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How Hair Grows

Did you know that a full, healthy head of hair consists of about 100,000 - 150,000 individual hairs? It’s true. And only 90% of those hair follicles are usually in a stage of growth. The remainder are either resting or transitioning.

IDENTIFYING AN ACTIVE FOLLICLE

Did you know that you have all your hair follicles in place when you’re born? It’s true — and the number never changes. So when we refer to an active follicle, we mean a follicle on your head that’s still able to produce hair. 

SHEDDING HAPPENS

A little hair in the shower drain or your hairbrush is nothing to be concerned about. In fact, most people shed an average of 50–100 strands per day, which is normally replaced with new hair. If you notice yourself shedding a bit more than usual, keep an eye on it — it could be a sign that your hair is beginning to thin. 

HAIR GROWTH PHASE 1: GROWING

Every hair on your head is constantly going through one of the 3 stages of the hair growth cycle. The first phase is a growth phase, called anagen, and it can last anywhere from 2 to 6 years. While in this phase, group of cells at the base of the hair, called the dermal papilla, multiply rapidly. As new cells form, the old ones move upward creating the hair you see. 

HAIR GROWTH PHASE 2: TRANSITIONING

Next, the cells at the base of the hair stop multiplying, the hair stops growing, and it enters into catagen, or the transition phase. This part of the hair growth cycle only lasts from 2 to 3 weeks. 

HAIR GROWTH PHASE 3: RESTING

Finally, the hair enters a phase called telogen. At this time, the hair rests for 2 or 3 months before it is shed by the follicle. 

HAIR GROWTH CYCLE 4: GROWING AGAIN

After the hair has been shed, a new hair begins to grow, and the cycle repeats itself — through anagen, catagen and telogen — for each hair follicle on your head for as long as it is active.