Does Hair Grow Back Faster If Shaved or Cut?
We’ve all heard the saying that if you cut your hair it will grow back faster than it did before. But does this saying have any truth to it?
Commonly associated with facial hair and shaving, this saying has been around forever and people still believe it to this day.
The short answer is, no, your hair will not grow back faster if you cut it or shave it.
We’ve heard of people getting their hair trimmed more frequently because they had been told that the hair would grow faster that way, and they wanted long hair. Some even cut their hair on the new moon because folklore says that will make it grow faster.
If you want your hair to be longer, just be patient and let it grow naturally. Cutting your hair more frequently, or shaving your facial hair, will not cause the hair to grow back faster or thicker.
How Hair Follicles Control Hair Growth
Trimming the ends of your hair has no influence on how fast or slow your hair will grow. Your hair follicles control your hair growth, and the speed at which your hair grows is predominantly determined by genetics. However, it can also be influenced by your diet as well as the climate in which you live.
So why has this myth been around for so long and why do people still believe it?
While getting your hair trimmed regularly will not, in itself, cause your hair to grow faster, it will help you maintain a healthy head of hair, which removes damaged ends that could be preventing you from attaining the hair length you desire.
Trimming your hair on a regular basis can help prevent your hair from trichoptilosis (fancy medical term for split ends). While split ends start at the end of the hair, they can eventually split further up towards you scalp. When this happens, it makes your hair more fragile and can cause your hair to snap off, which would prevent your hair from continuing to grow to the length you desire.
So while the act of cutting your hair will not cause the hair itself to grow any faster, it can prevent your hair from becoming damaged, which could, in turn, cause your hair to grow to longer lengths.
Hair usually grows an average of ½” per month, which can vary slightly depending on genetics, climate and your diet. The act of cutting your hair will not change the rate in which your hair grows.
Your hair follicles located in your scalp are what control the rate of growth.
But what about body hair? There are plenty of people that swear that their body hair, whether it’s facial hair, leg hair, or even armpit hair, grows back thicker after shaving.
Does Shaving Cause Hair to Grow in Thicker?
Another common misconception when it comes to hair growth is that shaving body hair will cause it to grow back thicker than it was before.
This is also not true.
Just as with the hair on your head, body and facial hair growth is controlled by the follicles, so trimming or shaving the ends of them, even all the way down to the skin, won’t alter the follicles in a way that will cause your hair to grow back in thicker.
You may claim that you’ve witnessed this myth first hand, but the reality of it is that hair regrowth is going to look different when it’s shaved all the way down to the skin.
When hair begins to grow back after shaving, the hair at the base is a blunt trimmed end that only feels more coarse. This also causes the illusion of the hair being thicker when it regrows after shaving but it’s just an optical illusion.
When a hair first emerges from the skin it will have a thin, tapered end which gradually thickens as the follicle continues to grow to its full “terminal” size. (Terminal hairs are the thicker sized hairs on our scalp, face and body after puberty). Often times our first shaving experiences are at puberty when the body hair is truly changing in color or thickness. In this case, if the subsequent hair growth appears more coarse or thick, these changes are due to hormones, not from the act of shaving.
In adulthood, the hair itself is not growing back any thicker or any faster than it was before you shaved, it just appears that way due to the base of the hair being more coarse and darker than the ends of your hair.
So if you’ve been trying to help your hair grow faster by getting trims more frequently, you may want to reconsider your methods. Yes, hair trimming will help prevent hair damage, which can stunt hair growth after certain lengths, but if you’re cutting off too much each time you go to the stylist, your hair will never reach the length you desire.
And as for facial hair and body hair, do not be afraid to shave it for fear of it growing in thicker and faster, that’s just not how it works.
If you’ve been cutting your hair more frequently (or timing your trims with the new moon) because you notice that it’s not coming in as thick as you’d like, there are other options out there to help with hair growth.
At the Limmer Hair Transplant Center in San Antonio, Texas, we’re here to help restore your hair to its former glory. Whether you require medicinal treatment or a hair transplant procedure, we can help determine what is best for you and your situation.
Contact us today to find out how we can help!