Style Icon Aev­in Dugas

By Jc of The Nat­u­ral Haven Bloom

The scientific answer – or is it?

Many wom­en will by now know that hair will on aver­age grow for between 2 to 6 years. This fig­ure is wide­ly quot­ed as the aver­age length of the ana­gen phase (when hair is active­ly grow­ing dur­ing its growth cycle). This would there­fore trans­late to a max­i­mum hair length from any­where between 8–12 inch­es (shoul­der to armpit length) at the low end to 24 to 36 inch­es (waist length to tail­bone length) at the high­er end  This all assum­ing a year­ly aver­age growth rate of between 4 and 6 inch­es.

How­ev­er what many peo­ple do not know is that the wide­ly quot­ed sci­en­tific fig­ure is in fact based on 2–3 small scale stud­ies which account for as few as 2 indi­vid­u­als. There are in fact no stud­ies which actu­al­ly track a rea­son­able group of indi­vid­u­als over a peri­od of years to firm­ly deter­mine how long the hair growth cycle actu­al­ly is.

Fur­ther­more there is evi­dence that this 2–6 year wide­ly accept­ed length could be con­sid­er­ably wrong. One inter­est­ing study which mea­sured hair length of vis­i­tors to US the­me parks and hair lengths record­ed online on long hair sites, came to the con­clu­sion that the aver­age nor­mal length of the ana­gen phase could be as long as 12 to 14 years. This trans­lates to 48–72 inch­es at the low end and  56–84 inch­es at the high end. Both of the­se fig­ures trans­late to a max­i­mum hair length of below tail­bone to ankle length and beyond. To be clear, this means that the aver­age per­son can grow hair to well below tail­bone even with a 4 inch per year hair growth phase.

The sci­en­tific truth is that the max­i­mum hair length that a human being can achieve is not well estab­lished and human hair may keep grow­ing for 6 years or longer.

The hair care factor

Hair length is linked to genet­ics but this only deter­mi­nes how fast and how long your hair will grow. It does not account for how well you han­dle it. Some­times wom­en look at oth­er fam­i­ly mem­bers to deter­mine how long their hair will grow but this can be huge­ly erro­neous. If the vast major­i­ty of wom­en in your fam­i­ly have very short hair with­out inten­tion­al­ly cut­ting it, it does not mean that their hair is inca­pable of achiev­ing longer lengths. It may in fact indi­cate that the meth­ods that they use to care for their hair cause it to break.

In addi­tion, if you hap­pen to be the only one in your fam­i­ly whose hair appears not to be able to achieve a longer length, the fact is that your hair tex­ture is prob­a­bly quite dif­fer­ent from your oth­er fam­i­ly mem­bers. It may be the case that the stan­dard rou­tine used by the rest of your fam­i­ly does not apply to you. This is espe­cial­ly true if your fam­i­ly is of mixed her­itage.

Once hair is out­side of the fol­li­cle, the onus is on the own­er to main­tain it. The less dam­age it sus­tains, the more like­ly it is to be able to achieve its max­i­mum length (i.e still be present 6 or 12 years after emerg­ing.) If you find that your hair keeps break­ing at a cer­tain length, you need to change what you are doing at that length in order to help it over­come the break­age.

Ladies, what is the max­i­mum length your hair has grown?

Ref­er­ences
J Cos­met Sci, pp 367–378, 2003
Jour­nal of Inves­tiga­tive Der­ma­tol­ogy , pp 65–81, 1970

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79 Comments on "What is the Maximum Length Your Hair Will Grow?"

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Deandra

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Dominique

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Deandra

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Sheree

I vot­ed :)

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