Have you ever experienced tremendous hair growth, only to have it stop suddenly? Understanding the phases of hair growth may help you to make better decisions when it comes to hair care.
Hair grows in three stages:
Stage One: The Anagen Phase
This is the growing phase. The hair begins in the papilla and can last from two to six years, depending on genetics. The longer this stage, the longer the hair will grow. About 85% of the hairs on your head are in this stage.
Stage Two: The Catagen Phase
Also known as the transitional phase, when the follicle renews itself. It lasts for two weeks and the follicle shrinks due to disintegration. The papilla detaches, cutting the hair strand off from its nourishing blood supply, and the hair shaft is pushed upward giving birth to new hair.
Stage Three: The Telogen Phase
This is the resting phase, where the hair remains dormant for one to four months. At some point, the hair follicle will begin to grow again, breaking free from the root. Within two weeks, the new hair shaft will begin to emerge.
Our friends, Pure Royal shares the factors that contribute towards retardation of hair growth:
1.Dryness – Despite looking and feeling strong, Afro hair is very fragile. The coily, curly or kinky shape or form makes it very hard for oils to moisturise and condition this unique hair type. Lubricants and oils from the scalp travel have to travel along the spring-like shape of the hair strand hardly ever reaching the ends, resulting in dryness.
2. Chemicals – African hair is difficult to manage in its original state, but chemicals used to soften the hair can damage it, resulting in over-processing and breakage.
3. Heredity – Some individuals have a shorter Anagen Stage (Stage One), causing slow growth, and a long resting stage where the new hair doesn’t emerge as fast as other hair types. This delays the cycle of regrowth and explains why some people have longer hair than others.
4. Bad Haircare Habits – When hair is not groomed properly it experiences buildup. Potential scalp disorders and infections result in limp, weak hair that breaks easily. The use of unsuitable products for the specific hair type will cause malnourished, weak, limp and dull hair.
5. Bad eating habits and drugs – It is always best to eat healthy foods, drink lots of water and follow a healthy grooming regime of shampooing with mild shampoos and conditioners designed for African natural hair or African chemically treated hair. Prescription drugs and/or medical procedures also have a negative effect on the growth of hair. Be sure to seek professional advice before and after certain medical procedures.
Source: Pure Royal. Images: iStock