How Your Hair Growth Cycle Affects Permanent Hair Removal
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Though the results of permanent hair removal options tend to be long-lasting, it’s crucial to know how to best manage the hair growth cycle as it can impact the results of your hair removal. If you understand how hair grows on the various parts of the body, you can use the knowledge to more efficiently prepare for outcomes and minimize the length of time needed for your hair removal treatment in Singapore or anywhere else in the world.
What is hair growth?
Hair follicles can be seen in most locations on our bodies, such as our arms and legs, but also grow on various parts of the body. The hair on our heads is usually different in length, shape, and texture than the hair on our arms or legs, though each one is the result of the same bodily process. The base of each strand of hair contains a group of cells whose sole purpose is to form hair from a protein, called keratin. Keratin building blocks are added to the base of the hair in layers, with each additional layer pushing the increasingly longer strand of hair further from the skin.
Now, the reason why our hair on our head grows longer and thicker than that on our arms or legs is due to the differences in the hair growth cycles of head and body hair. Each strand of hair on our heads also grows according to the normal human hair growth cycle, but the length of the cycle is what determines whether we will start looking younger and hair will appear thinner on our bodies later.
The different phases of the hair growth cycle
The hair growth cycle is a series of events that happen in the scalp over a period of time. The different phases of the hair growth cycle are the anagen phase, the catagen phase, the telogen phase, and the exogen phase. Each of these phases has its own set of goals and requirements for the hair follicle.
The Anagen Phase
Also known as the active phase of hair growth, the anagen phase is the time during which the cells within the follicle are actively producing new hair materials from the keratin building blocks. On average, human hair grows at a rate of about 1 in. , or about 5 mm, within a 28-30 day period. The length and duration of the anagen phase are drastically different for scalp and body hair. Scalp hair’s anagen phase usually lasts about 2-5 years, whereas body hair’s usually lasts for only 5-7 weeks.
Furthermore, it should also be noted that the anagen phase duration also differs from one individual to another because it results from genetic factors. This is why some individuals have trouble growing extremely long hair on their heads, regardless of how patient they are.
The Catagen Phase
The next phase of the hair growth cycle is when the hair enters rapidly growing state, characterized by a time of maturation of the follicle, as well as the growth of the hairs forming the shaft. At the catagen phase, hairs are no longer capable of producing length, with the fiber at and around the root of the hair remaining glued to the strand. In general, a healthy head of hair will spend about 2 to 3 weeks in this stage before transitioning to the next stage.
The Telogen Phase
The third stage of the cycle of hair growth is known as the telogen stage. The human hair in this phase detaches from the follicle and strands; during this stage, the hair may eventually fall out with the body’s natural processes. For many people, the telogen stage of the hair growth cycle will last for approximately 12 to 13 weeks, or about 100 days.
During the course of the telogen interval, the hair follicles eventually wake up, producing a new hair growth cycle, over, over, and over again. This unique characteristic of the hair’s life cycle is why when you shave, pluck, wax, sugar, or apply depilatory creams to remove hair you wish to be removed, they won’t be removed altogether. However, you need refrain from conducting such methods often in order to keep the same look.
How the hair growth cycle affects permanent hair removal
The hair growth cycle is something that affects permanent hair removal in a few different ways. For example, during the anagen phase, hair is growing and becoming longer. This is the phase where most hair removal takes place. During the telogen phase, hair falls out and is replaced by new hair. This is the least effective time to remove hair, as it’s when the hair is at its weakest.
Planning Laser Hair Removal Treatments To Account For The Hair Growth Cycle
Now, let’s examine the connection between the two hair growth cycle and IPL hair removal, which will remove any hair permanently. To start with, the follicle has to have hair inside it for light to be absorbed and converted into heat energy. The follicle that is currently shedding hairs due to the resting phase of the longitudinal hair growth cycle will not be affected by the treatment. Let’s clarify this a bit further.
At any point, hair follicles on our bodies can be in any of the three stages, with some re-entering the active growth phase, while others will adopt a transitional or dormant state. When performing an application, you are only affecting individual follicles on your skin that currently have hair within them. Follicles that have lost their hair during the anagen phase will not be able to be repaired until they enter the telogen phase once again and grow enough hair material to absorb light.
To experience 100% efficacy with regard to permanent hair removal, the implementation of time and patience are essential. During the telogen phase, which occurs for approximatively 100 days, more than 3 months will pass before all of the asleep hair follicles are treated. In successive procedures, more follicles in the anagen and catagen stages will be addressed. As the follicles in the telogen phase awake, they will be addressed next, and so on and so forth. This continues until all follicles in the treated area have returned to the anagen phase. Once all the follicles in the treated area have gone through this process, it will be completely hair free, permanently, as there will be no more untreated follicles in the area to awaken.
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