15 Things About Hair You Probably Don’t Know
We spend a lot of time on our hair: washing it, styling it and coloring it. But how much do we really know about our tresses? Here, some startling strand statistics:
1. Black and brown hair colors are the most common in the world, with more than 90 percent of scalps sprouting dark strands. Redheads, by contrast, are the rarest, with less than four percent of the population qualifying as natural gingers (blondes come in a close second on the rareness scale).
2. Hair can grow almost anywhere on the body. In fact, almost 95 percent of the body is covered in some kind of hair (including that soft downy fuzz on your cheeks or arms). The exceptions: your lips, the soles of your feet, your palms and mucous membranes.
3. We shed between 50 and 150 strands of hair a day. But don’t freak out—on average, we have between 100,000 to 150,000 strands on our head, so a little daily hair loss is barely discernible. In fact, for balding to even become apparent, you must lose nearly 50 percent of the hair on your head.
4. Natural blondes have the most strands on their scalps, while redheads have the least.
5. File this under don’t try this at home: When it’s wet, a strand of hair can be stretched up to 30 percent of its original length before breaking.
6. Another good to know (but not to try) factoid: One strand of human hair can support up to 3.5 ounces. So, figuring you have 100,000+ strands on your head, your hair, collectively, could support 22,000 pounds—or five SUVs.
7. Most scalps lack insulating fat, so hair is like having a permanent hat to keep your head warm.
8. What a waste of water: Eighty-percent of Americans wash their hair twice a day.
9. It’s not a myth—your hair does grow faster in the summer. Why? Hot air stimulates circulation in the scalp, enabling blood to carry extra, growth-accelerating nourishment to your follicles.
10. A new strand begins to grow immediately after one falls out or is plucked from your scalp. Phew.
11. At any one time, about 90 percent of your hair is actively growing, while the other ten percent is taking a rest.
12. Hair grows at an average of half-an-inch per month—or six inches a year. That means, if you start with a pixie, it will take you two to three years to grow shoulder-length strands.
13. The expression “it made my scalp crawl” is a real thing. When we’re are scared, the muscles inside hair follicles contract, creating goosebumps—and the sensation of skin tightening—all over your scalp.
14. Hair coloring has become a household habit. In the 1950s, only about seven percent of women dyed their hair. Today, more than half of women color their hair.
15. Be kind to your hair because it knows all your secrets. Forensic scientists can use a hair sample to identify everything that’s been in your bloodstream, including medicine, drugs and alcohol.
To maximize your hair—whatever its color, density, strength or style— create a customized regimen that makes the most of your mane. Get started here.