One of the great body hair myths debunked
As a species, humans are pretty much obsessed with removing their body hair – shaving, plucking, waxing or even lasering those pesky tufts of fuzz away. But it’s all for naught, as it’s a well-known fact that body hair, once removed, grows back bigger, badder and blacker than before…doesn’t it?
It’s like when people tell you yanking a grey hair out by the root will make three more grow in its place (and by that we mean it’s a big fat lie). While the act of cutting hair may make it look like it’s growing back thicker, the fact is there’s no science to prove it; it’s just that cutting hair off straight when hairs are naturally tapered makes them look bristlier when they grow back. Which is temporary, folks – they’ll get back to being good little tapered follicles in no time. And as for plucking and waxing…would you grow back stronger after being yanked out by the root? No? Neither does hair.
In fact, scientist sorts have actually done rather a lot of studies into this myth; unsurprisingly, they all disproved it. Once particularly amusing example involved having two young men shave just one of their legs, once a week, for months on end – presumably they wore long trousers to avoid staring, although we suppose it’s possible they rocked shorts and lapped up the attention. The scientists then actually COLLECTED THE HAIR (ew) for comparative purposes and concluded that nope, there was not a jot of proof that the post-shaving, regrown hair was any different. And come on, women shave their legs all the time – imagine if the hair got thicker every time?
One final thought on this one, though – if you were going bald, wouldn’t it be kind of great if hair did grow back thicker post-shaving? Just shave your head and ta-da! …problem solved.