HTMA Testing: How to Collect Hair Sample for Hair Analysis

Proper hair collection is very important for you to get accurate hair tissue mineral analysis results. Here are some tips to help you collect your hair sample.


  • Clean scissors
  • Lab collection kit- small white envelope, blue paper scale with instructions
  • Lab form- please complete the top portion/highlighted areas as instructed
  • Hair clips (optional)

Best Collection Method:

  • Wash your hair before cutting your sample. Use regular shampoo or a clarifying shampoo like Neutrogena Anti-Residue shampoo.
  • Rinse your hair in distilled water (you can buy a gallon at the grocery store).
  • Allow hair to air dry for at least 4 hours. Collect after it is completely dry. Please don’t exercise or sweat during this time.
  • Use clean scissors and cut as close to the scalp on the back of your head. Keep 1 inch of the hair ( from scalp side) and discard the rest. Collect enough hair to tip the scale.
  • Place hair sample in the provided paper envelope. Do not wrap your hair in plastic, aluminum foil or any material that could contaminate it.

Please be aware that the following can affect mineral readings:

  • Head and Shoulders/dandruff shampoo/Selsun Blue (avoid for several days)
  • Sweat from physical activity/Contaminated scissors
  • Salt from water softener/ well water/ Swimming in the ocean or clay-rich creek or lake
  • Highlights- wash at least 8-10 times after the treatment before taking the sample
  • Permed or bleached hair, wait at least 8 weeks
  • Taking an Epsom salt bath (can get hair wet)

Video Transcript

Hi, I’m Keiko, and I’m a health coach with KTM Holistic Health.

I’m going to show you how to collect your hair sample for the HTMA. So you’ll need your little scale to weigh your hair and an envelope to send your hair sample in. You’ll also need a pair of stainless steel scissors that are clean, and clips can be very helpful.

A few reminders, the things that can affect your mineral readings. Your shampoo, if you use something like Head and Shoulders you want to avoid those for a few days. Sweat can affect your reading. Water softener, if you have one, if you can turn it off, turn it off. If not, use reverse osmosis water or distilled water to rinse your hair to get rid of that extra salt that’s on your hair.

If you have dyed hair, wait about eight weeks so that you have new growth. If you have highlights, wait about eight to ten washes.

You want to make sure that you wash your hair and let it naturally dry before you do your collection.

Okay, so now we’re going to collect the hair. You want to collect from about four to five spots on the back of your head. I’m going to go ahead and let my husband cut a little bit off. He needs to cut as close to the scalp as possible.

Okay. And then once I get the hair, if you look, it’s about an inch and a half. So that’s all you want, and you want it from the scalp side. So you’re going to go from here and then cut. And this extra part is trash.

Then you want to keep collecting until the scale tips. I’m going to have him do one more. See? Oh, here. And I’ll change this back. Where did my clip go? Here, let’s see. All right, I’ll just hold it. Okay. And you’d be doing the same thing until the scale tips. So I’ll probably need another two more spots.