The biggest myth about shaving hair is probably one you believe — here’s why – Markets Insider
Shaving hair from our faces, legs, armpits, and other parts of
the skin is a daily routine that millions if not billions of
However, many shavers around the world believe a
pervasive myth about the practice: that hair grows back
stronger or thicker after being razored off.
“That’s not been demonstrated to be so,” Kurt Stenn, a biologist
who’s studied hair for more than 30 years, told Business Insider.
We asked Stenn about the notion during
a video shoot, since he’s a hair follicle scientist who
recently dove into the mechanics, evolution, culture, and history
of the subject in the book “Hair: A Human
Stenn said it’s easy to see why people believe the myth. When
people shave their hair after awhile, he said, the hair often
feels very thin.
“But then they see the hair comes back thicker,” he added. “In
fact the bottom portion of the hair shaft that’s shaved is
This thicker part of a hair follicle’s shaft is the first to
emerge from shaved skin, giving the appearance and feel of
thicker-growing hair. Yet this thick base naturally wears down
into a thinner tip over time as the hair continues to grow.
However, there may be at least one interesting ramification of
closely shaving your skin when it comes to hair growth.
“If you roughen it up, the hair will be stimulated to grow back,”
he said, adding that it’s just not yet proven the hair grows back
“Scientists have tried to demonstrate, to test this idea, and
some scientists claim that this occurs,” he said. “But usually
the science is not very good. I don’t think it’s ever been
demonstrated clearly that cutting or roughing your skin causes
the hair to come back thicker — it comes back quicker.”
Like the rest of us, Stenn isn’t growing any younger and would
love for this to be true.
If it were, he added: “Then balding should go away. It doesn’t.”
Watch the full video debunking the myth below.
Grace Raver contributed to this post.