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3 Grey Hair Myths Debunked | Philip Kingsley

Q. Does pulling out one grey hair make two grow back in its place?

A. If this myth were true, pulling out grey hairs would be an excellent way to make your hair thicker! It is, however, completely false.

How did the notion get started? Perhaps this way: When you notice a stray grey hair, you may pull it out. This action can damage the hair follicle, and the replacement hair takes longer to regenerate. By the time it eventually grows back, another grey hair may be beginning to grow next to it. Before you know it, you have two grey hairs — but this is purely coincidental. Q. Are grey hairs coarser than other hairs? A. When you go grey, your hair may feel quite dry. But this is not because of its texture — it is because hair usually greys at an age when your sebaceous glands (which are attached to each hair follicle) begin to secrete less oil than before. Grey hair is unlikely to be coarser in texture than your other hair. In fact, our hair gets finer as we age, so unless you turn grey very young, grey hair is usually not coarse at all. Q. Can my hair turn white overnight? A. Scientifically, this is impossible. The myth may have started with a condition called alopecia areata, whereby clumps of hair fall out and are sometimes replaced with white hairs. However, this process occurs over several months, not overnight. It is true that stress can affect your hair colour — but this too is a gradual, subtle process.

Q. Are grey hairs coarser than other hairs?

A. When you go grey, your hair may feel quite dry. But this is not because of its texture — it is because hair usually greys at an age when your sebaceous glands (which are attached to each hair follicle) begin to secrete less oil than before. Grey hair is unlikely to be coarser in texture than your other hair. In fact, our hair gets finer as we age, so unless you turn grey very young, grey hair is usually not coarse at all.

Q. Can my hair turn white overnight?

A. Scientifically, this is impossible. The myth may have started with a condition called alopecia areata, whereby clumps of hair fall out and are sometimes replaced with white hairs. However, this process occurs over several months, not overnight. It is true that stress can affect your hair colour — but this too is a gradual, subtle process.