November 18, 2010

Back to the Basics - The ABC's of Hair

Each hair grows approximately at the rate of 1 centimeter per month. This growth continues for 2-6 years. When the hair attains full growth it resets for 2-3 months and is later shed.
A new hair starts growing in its place. Thus at any given point of time 10 percent of the total hair on our scalp is in a resting phase and 90 percent of the hair is in growth phase.
1.      Follicle - The opening of the skin, which contains the hair shaft and root.  It is the point from which hair grows.
2.      Shaft - the non growing portion of a hair that protrudes from the skin, from the follicle and contains 3 layers.

3 LAYERS OF HAIR SHAFT – Each strand of hair contains:
1.      Cuticle – outer layer (gives shiny appearance).  Protects the cortex.
2.      Cortex – middle layer between the cuticle and medulla
Determines the texture and strength of the hair, contains pigment and keratin
3.      Medulla – innermost layer

1.      Anagen Phase – hair growth phase
Approximately 80% to 90% of our hair is in this phase at any given time.
2.      Catagen Phase – the transition phase where hair growth begins to shut down and stop activity.  Approximately 2% of our hair is in this phase at any given time.
3.      Telogen Phase - the resting phase
Approximately 10% to 18% of our hair is in this phase at any given time.


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