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Hair Growth Cycle Myths and Facts

By January 27th, 20214 Comments

Hair Growth Cycle Myths and Facts

by Allison Cooper of NaturallyCurly.com

No matter who you are or where you come from, everyone has the same hair growth cycle. Despite the knowledge that we have about hair, there are still many myths about hair growth. Read on and you’ll find the answers to many unanswered questions regarding what to expect from your scalp and your hair.

Hair Growth Facts

The Real Deal on What is Happening

There are three different phases that take place within the hair growth cycle. These are known by name as “anagen,” “catagen,” and “telogen.” At its own pace, each strand of hair on your head transitions through these three phases.

The anagen phase is also known as the growth phase. Most of the hairs on your head, up to 85 percent of them, are going through this phase at the same time. This part of the growth cycle will take anywhere from two to six years to complete. Every year, each hair follicle has the opportunity to grow up to ten centimeters.

The catagen phase is also known as the transitional phase. This phase will last anywhere between one and two weeks. During this phase, the hair follicle will actually shrink to 1/6 of its original length. The lower part of the follicle becomes destroyed and the dermal papilla, what nourishes the hair follicle, will break away.

The telogen phase is considered to be the resting phase in the hair growth cycle. This will last anywhere between five and six weeks, in which the follicle stays attached to the scalp, but does not continue to grow. Overall, 10 to 15 percent of all hairs on your head at this time are going through this phase.

These different phases all come together as the telogen phase ends and then the anagen phase begins again. This complete the hair growth cycle.

Hair Growth Myths

Separating Fact from Fiction

Once major myth regarding the hair growth cycle is that sections of hair go through each cycle at the same time, leading to missing patches of hair. This is completely false, as each individual hair goes through these phases at its own independent rate. Even though you shed your hair on a regular basis, a healthy scalp and head of hair will never have complete sections of hair missing at one time.

Some people also believe that by frequently wearing hats, you will toy with the hair growth cycle in a negative way. This is highly unlikely, unless the hat is being worn extremely tightly, and cutting off circulation to the hair follicles, thus speeding up the releasing of the dermal papilla.

In addition, many people believe that excessive washing, drying and styling of the hair will increase hair loss. This won’t happen unless you are doing this at excessive measures, roughly and multiple times a day.

What You Should Expect

The Physical Aspect of Hair Growth

On a day-to-day basis, one can expect to experience shedding between 100 to 150 pieces of hair. This is a normal result of the hair growth cycle. Whenever pieces of hair shed, it is simply a sign that new hair will be growing in its place. Shedding is a sign of a health scalp. If you are experiencing excessive hair loss, then it is suggested that you speak with your doctor.

Hard & Fast Hair Growth Truths

  • The hair growth cycle is a natural process that cannot be rushed or slowed down by any methods.
  • There is no need to worry that everyday tasks are going to have an effect on the way that the cycle flows.

4 Comments

  • Anonymous says:

    i have been natural (with Loc's) for approximately 17 years. I am tired of the loc's and would like to take them out. Do you know the best way to go about this?

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi Anon,

    If your hair is fragile, you definitly shouldn't brush it! This will cause breakage, and it won't grow beyond a certain point. Check out the hairs left in your brush – if they have a white dot at the top, this is normal shedding, but if they don't, this is breakage.

    If your strands are fragile, they could be in need of protein. This helps to strenghten the hair, but treatments should only be done once a week, and followed with a deep conditioning treatment.

    I've personaly found sea kelp tablets have really helped with my growth, and my nails have improved too!

  • Anonymous says:

    I think that there are a lot of myths out there.Due to so much information on the internet for AA hair its often hard to separate fact from fiction. I have very fine 3c hair &retaining growth is MY issue. I see shedding even when finger combing. Any "out" style causes shedding & wash and go's look lovely but it pains me to see the hair left behind in my denman! Although My hair seems healthy, is very shiny and curly But my strands are very very fragile. I have researched biotin for hair,castor oil for thickening properties, henna for strengthening and have read some ppl take MSM (which a vitamin initially for bones and joints) because it is supposedly lengthen the antigen phase…(this sounds strange to me.) Alot of articles about AA Hair seems to either be too scientific (mixing up hair concoctions), poor information, or something from a antidote from a shaman's recipe book. Its very frustrating when trying to decide what is necessary for my hair, because all black hair is different.

  • Anya says:

    Great article! Thank you so much for the wealth of hairacation

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