What is the hair growth cycle?

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Written By Sam Robinson

It's key to understand the stages in the hair growth cycle in order to understand and recognise the problems you can encounter with your hair. The hair growth cycle is made up of three stages:

  • Anagen phase: This is the growth stage, this starts in the hair follicle and can last from two to six years, so a full-length hair averages 18 to 30 inches. 
  • Catagen phase: This is the renewal stage, this allows the follicle to regenerate, during this phase the follicle is around 1/6 its original length pushing the hair shaft upwards. The catagen phase lasts around 10 days to 2 weeks.
  • Telogen phase: This is the resting phase, during this period the follicle remains dormant for 1 to 4 months, around 10 to 15 percent of the hairs are in this phase at any one time. Once the follicle begins to grow again the hair base will break free from the root and the hair will shed. Within 2 weeks the new hair shaft will emerge.
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