One of the least talked about and least known aspects of hair is growth cycles. While it's not the most commonly discussed part of hair health and hair growth, it is the natural process in which hair growth and hair fall go through continuously throughout your life.
Understanding hair growth cycles and resting phases may help you better support your overall hair growth and health in each phase. Today we are sharing what each part of the hair growth cycle means and how it affects your hair.
How does your hair grow and what is it made from?
Hair grows from a root located under the skin. The root is at the bottom of a follicle and the follicle supplies oxygen and other vital nutrients to the hair root to support hair growth. This process helps your hair grow every day -- in fact, your hair grows approximately 0.3 to 0.4 mm each day!
Hair strands are made up of 95% keratin, and also dead skin cells. Keratin is a structural protein which is not only found in your hair, it's also is found in your skin and nails, too! Keratin can be found in onions, sweet potatoes, sunflower seeds, mangoes, kale, and more.
How many hair growth cycle phases are there?
There are four hair growth cycle phases that each person's hair goes through. They are:
What are the four Hair Growth Cycles?
Growth Phase: Anagen
The anagen phase of the hair growth cycle is the phase your hair actually grows in. The vast majority of your hair (about ~90%) is in this phase the majority of the time.
Are there any factors that reduce hair growth in the anagen phase?
While the amount of hair in the anagen phase typically does decline with age, there are a number of best practices and ways to support your hair growth and hair health continuously.
Aside from age, there are other factors such as hormonal changes, underlying health conditions, stress, nutritional deficiencies, dehydration, and other conditions that can affect the hair growth in this phase. If you're concerned about your hair growth, then we recommend visiting your doctor so they can best address your concerns.
How much will hair grow in the Anagen Phase?
While this does vary from person to person, on average a person's hair will grow 1/2 - 1 inch a month. This means typically a person will grow approximately 6 inches of hair each year.
Does pregnancy affect the Anagen Phase of Hair Growth?
Yes, pregnancy can have an affect on the anagen phase of the hair growth cycle. Some people may notice that during pregnancy their hair becomes longer more quickly, as well as thicker than usual. This is because the anagen phase can be prolonged during pregnancy and reduce the amount of strands shed per day.
After delivery, it is normal to experience an increased amount of hair fall (known as postpartum hair loss) as the hairs that stayed in the anagen phase for longer than usual enter into the catagen and subsequent hair cycle phases. While this hair loss may be alarming, it is normal and your regular hair cycle will resume within a few months.
Can hair growth vitamins help Anagen Phase hair growth?
Yes, the Tru Blom Hair Growth Vitamins contain essential hair nutrients and superfoods to help support your best hair growth in the anagen phase.
Other haircare practices to support your anagen phase hair growth: Aside from taking one Tru Bloom Hair Growth Vitamins a day, there are a few hair care practices that you can implement to help support your hair growth and health:
- Eat a nutritious diet
- Use the Beach Goddess Hot Oil Hair Mask weekly
- Massage your scalp for 5 minutes once a week
- Reduce heatstyling
- Swap your cotton pillowcase for a satin one (unlike silk pillowcases, satin is a great vegan option, too!)
Resting Phase: Catagen
The catagen phase is the phase when your hair growth stops. This stage affects about 1% of your hair at any time and can last for a few weeks or for a few months.
During this time the hair in this phase (which is known as a "club hair") will not continue growing but it also is not yet ready to shed. These hairs are typically the longest hairs on your head as they have gone through their full growth cycle.
Process Phase: Telogen
The telogen phase of your hair cycle is the phase in which your body is preparing to allow your club hairs to shed.
You may be wondering what the difference is between the catagen phase and the telogen phase. The core difference is that in the catogen phase your hair is simply resting, while in the telogen phase your body is actually beginning the process of hair fall.
Shedding Phase: Exogen
The exogen phase of the hair cycle is the phase in which you will experience actual hair fall and shedding. The club hairs will shed during this phase with the average person losing about 100 hairs per day. While this may sound like a lot, it is actually very normal. Given the average person has about 100,000 hairs on their head, losing 100 hairs per day during this phase is very minimal.The exogen phase typically only lasts a few days and then a new hair growth cycle begins.
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