For ages, women have been searching for the secrets to growing longer, faster hair in the shortest amount of time but the truth is, there really aren't any products that can make your hair grow like magic. Your hair growth can however be stunted or you may be having issues with severe breakage. In this case, the hair that is breaking is usually falling faster than the hair that is growing.
The time, length and fullness of your hair is mostly dependent on your genetics. Hair grows in cycles that are unique to each and every one of us based on our DNA makeup. However, there can be underlying health issues, or the mistreatment of hair that can cause an interruption in your hair growth cycle.
You may find products or supplements that treat hair breakage, thinning hair or other issues that may cause the hair to appear as if it is growing at an alarming rate.
The hair growth cycle can be broken down into four basic phases:
1. The Anagen Phase (the active growth phase)
In this stage, your natural hair growth is considered to be in an active growth phase which usually lasts from two to six years, but could range for some. The hair could grow anywhere between 18-24 inches until it begins to shed into the next phase.
2. The Catagen Phase (the transitional phase)
The Catagen phase is the shortest of the hair growth process and can last anywhere from 1-2 weeks. In the Catagen phase, the lowest part of the hair follicle gets cut off from the blood supply, gets destroyed and shrinks to approximately 1/6 of its normal length.
3. The Telogen Phase (the resting phase)
This stage is when hair growth goes into a dormant stage lasting approximately 1-4 months. Almost 10-15 percent of all hairs are in the Telogen phase at one time, in which the hairs stay attached to the follicle in preparation for returning to the Anagen phase. If the old hair has not already shed then the new hair pushes the old hair out and the growth cycle restarts.
4. Exogen Phase (the shedding phase)
The hair is now in a stage where it's preparing to return to the growth phase and start forming new hairs. The hair will start to shed easily with the simple stroke of a comb or brush. Once the hair starts to shed, it begins the growth process over and returns to the Anagen phase. Keep in mind that not every hair strand on your head will be in the same phase at the same time.