As humans, we grow hair all over our body except on the palms of our hands and under our feet. You may wonder why your leg hair doesn’t grow as long as the hair on your head, thank God! There’s a reason for that and it’s called, a hair growth cycle. The process of hair growth is the same for all hair across the human body but the time spent to complete that cycle is different depending on where the hair is located on the body.
Let’s start at the beginning. The Growth Phase (Anagen) starts with blood flow feeding oxygen to cells at the root of the hair, creating the buds of keratin cells. Those keratin cells create hair that pushes through the surface of the skin. In this phase, hair grows on average 1/4 inch per month, depending on where it’s located on the body. The hair on your head can have a growth phase as long as 2-6 years. Your unique genetic makeup tell the hair to stop growing. Environmental factors, genetics, hormone imbalances and stress levels determine the hair growth rate during this phase. Once that phase ends, the hair stops growing and the next phase kicks in.
The Transition Phase (Catagen) lasts for about 2-3 weeks and occurs when the blood supply is cut off from the follicle. The hair is not growing and transitions into a dormant state called The Resting Phase.
The Resting Phase (Telogen) is when hair detaches from the follicle and sheds which completes the hair growth cycle. This hair growth cycle is completed 25 to 30 times in our lifetime.
It’s important to note that 100% of your hair is not going through the exact same phase of the hair growth cycle all at once. If that were the case, all of your hair would grow and shed at the exact same time.