What Makes Hair Grow?

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Hair grows as the papilla, a small bulb-like root of each hair follicle, absorbs nutrients in the bloodstream and passes them up to the follicle. Understand how hair grows, which is usually a half-inch per month, with beauty advice from a professional hair stylist in this free video on hair care.

Part of the Video Series: Hairstyles & Braiding
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Video Transcript

Hi my name is Lauren and today I'm here to discuss what makes hair grow. Your hair is attached and goes in through your hair follicle which is your pores within your scalp. Down into your hair follicle, at the very base of it, is something called a papilla. The papilla is a little round shape, it almost looks like a bit of a bulb, that connects to your hair follicle and gives it nutrients that your hair needs in order to grow. Your papilla gets the nourishment and passes those nutrients along by taking them out of your blood flow. As your blood rushes past, the papilla grabs them and then brings them up and nourishes your hair follicle in order to have your hair grow healthy and shiny. And also at a medium rate. Your hair goes through a growth cycle. That growth cycle begins with the anagen phase which is the growing phase. The growing phase usually last about 85 days. Your hair will grow anywhere from a 1/4 of an inch to a 1/2 inch per month during this phase. 85% percent of your hair is actually growing at that same time. So therefore most of your hair is actually growing. After it leaves that phase, it'll then go into the catagen phase. Your catagen phase is actually your transitional phase. Your follicle becomes 1/6 of it's normal size and your papilla actually detaches from the hair follicle and sinks back down. After that sinks back down it'll sit for about 1 or 2 weeks. Ultimately your papilla is actually gaining more nutrients and somewhat transitioning itself into another period. After it leaves the catagen phase, it's going to then go into the telogen phase. The telogen phase is the resting period. Ultimately your follicle and papilla, they'll both reattach, they go back to normal size. However, your hair doesn't do anything is just is. It'll just be. Your hair will just simply rest for about 4 weeks and then it'll start again and then start to grow. This cycle will continue throughout the course of your life and it'll grow and stop growing and then rest back and forth so that way your hair will grow healthy, it'll hydrate itself, nourish itself, and this is how your hair grows.

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