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MeMyselfandI
March 14th, 2008, 09:28 PM
Is there really a length that hair will stop growing at?

Does the hair just break off or what?

Terminal (length) - the length at which the hair will grow no longer. Another way to say it is "I'm growing my hair as long as it will grow"


I am so happy I found this page:

http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/vbjournal.php?do=article&articleid=10

All the abbreviations that I needed to know.

Silver & Gold
March 14th, 2008, 09:40 PM
Each hair on your head has a life expectancy. Once it reaches the end of it's little hair life, well, first it stops growing and just hangs out for a while, then it drops out of the follicle. The follicle lies dormant for a while (resting up) and then it begins to produce a new hair.

I think each follicle is good for 10-20 hairs in a lifetime.

sapphire-o
March 15th, 2008, 12:28 AM
Of course. Hair doesn't grow forever, otherwise we would never have shed hair. Fortunately for most healthy people the terminal is at least hip length. Quite long enough to qualify as long hair. :)

ilovelonghair
March 15th, 2008, 03:57 AM
I got a question:

I heard somewhere that a hair follicle can only produce and hair 7 times and then it dies off, I think this cannot be true, because otherwise there would be many bald people walking around: the ones with a short terminal hair lenght, lets say 2 years. Those people would be bald before they are adults.

So how does this work?

UrbanEast
March 15th, 2008, 04:08 AM
I got a question:

I heard somewhere that a hair follicle can only produce and hair 7 times and then it dies off, I think this cannot be true, because otherwise there would be many bald people walking around: the ones with a short terminal hair lenght, lets say 2 years. Those people would be bald before they are adults.

So how does this work?

Let's say a typical short haired person grows his hair to 2 inches before he gets it cut to 1 inch. Assuming a terminal length of 36" and assuming a 1/2 growth per month, that means that he's got 6 years until the the first hair follicle falls out. 6 years*7/hair follicles=42 years. That does seem pretty short, although it's usually when male pattern baldness starts.

Maybe some hairs can grow 8-10 times?

sapphire-o
March 15th, 2008, 04:14 AM
Where did you hear about this "7 times" thing? I thought everywhere say each follicle can grow 10 - 20 hairs in a lifetime?

ChloeDharma
March 15th, 2008, 05:33 AM
I'm wondering if this thing about how many hairs can grow from a follicle is just based on the average length of time a hair will be in it's growth phase and the average expected age people reach before they die?
I wouldn't personally get too worried about it, these mathsy types are always trying to oversimplify things :P

As for Androgenic Alopecia that's to do with DHT attaching to the follicle and causing it to shrink producing finer and shorter hairs until they stop growing.

MeMyselfandI
March 15th, 2008, 06:53 AM
Thank you for your answers.

Would that then mean any natural length that was easily attained as a child would be your individual terminal length?

eresh
March 15th, 2008, 07:48 AM
I heard hair even continues to grow after death, for a certain period of time.

GlassEyes
March 15th, 2008, 08:02 AM
I heard hair even continues to grow after death, for a certain period of time.

That's a myth.

It appears to grow because the flesh of the scalp recedes and thins, revealing the hair shaft more and more. It does the same to fingernails which is why people think they grow after death too.

It's what got a lot of vampire rumors started way back when. People would stake already dead bodies because they thought they were 'turning'.


And I'm curious about this too, because I want long long hair and if it all falls out before or after I may cry. A lot.

Oh, and I think different hairs have different cycles which is why no one goes bald as a follicle remains dormant. Well, no one goes bald FROM natural hair shedding at least.

eresh
March 15th, 2008, 08:13 AM
Hm I googled it and it does grow...but not very long :-)
http://en.allexperts.com/q/Pathology-1640/hair-nail-growth-death.htm

"In a way it is true up to certain limit where the growth post mortum stop
The only part of hair that's still alive is the follicle, which has its own blood supply. Once that supply is gone, there can be no growth. Fingernails are the same way."

TammySue
March 15th, 2008, 08:27 AM
Absolutely. Everyone has a terminal length at which their hair will grow; however, some never realize their true terminal lengths due to hair abuse, etc. Many factors come into play in reaching that goal, not only gentle care, but also genetics. I read somewhere to look at your Grandmother's hair (on your Father's side) for attainable length (not sure how accurate this infomation is or if it applies to guys or not).

The terminal length factor has always been one of interest to me! :cool:

BlndeInDisguise
March 15th, 2008, 08:31 AM
Hair must have a lifespan as well, though, right? Otherwise someone who kept their hair at say, APL all the time would never shed any because their hair would never hit terminal.

k_hepburn
March 15th, 2008, 08:39 AM
I'd still be intrigued to know if any of our members can report having reached terminal length. We tend to hear about the theory (hairs having a set life-cycle) and that damage from handling / chemical prodedures can cause your hair to break off before it reaches its terminal length. Occasionally people ask the question if they are at terminal length, to which the answer usually is, that it is too early to tell, since hair can stop growing for a period of time and then start again.

But I'm not sure that I have seen first-hand reports from members yet who have left their hair in its virgin state and have not cut it in at least two or three years without having experienced any growth at all, and who thus can report with reasonable confidence that they have indeed reached terminal length. I do wonder if the length to which human hairs can grow - as well as their life cycle - isn't generally underestimated, since too many external factors (dyeing, highlighting, perming, cutting, rough handling) influence the "effective" terminal length in most people.

katharine

trolleypup
March 15th, 2008, 09:43 AM
I'd still be intrigued to know if any of our members can report having reached terminal length.
Terminal at 53 inches...been at this length for years. The longest individual hairs are 42". Each hair still grows at 1/2 inch per month though.

All the markers for terminal:
Consistent length for more than a year
Fairytale ends
Regrowth after a trim is normal growth rate til terminal length is reached again.

MeMyselfandI
March 15th, 2008, 11:26 AM
I'd still be intrigued to know if any of our members can report having reached terminal length. We tend to hear about the theory (hairs having a set life-cycle) and that damage from handling / chemical prodedures can cause your hair to break off before it reaches its terminal length. Occasionally people ask the question if they are at terminal length, to which the answer usually is, that it is too early to tell, since hair can stop growing for a period of time and then start again.

But I'm not sure that I have seen first-hand reports from members yet who have left their hair in its virgin state and have not cut it in at least two or three years without having experienced any growth at all, and who thus can report with reasonable confidence that they have indeed reached terminal length. I do wonder if the length to which human hairs can grow - as well as their life cycle - isn't generally underestimated, since too many external factors (dyeing, highlighting, perming, cutting, rough handling) influence the "effective" terminal length in most people.

katharine

I stopped perming, cut my hair and let it grow for over 20 years. I rarely used a curling iron or a blow dryer, a few times in the 20+ years. I cut it short a few times and it quickly grew then seemed to stop growing.

I could never figure out why it would reach a certain length and not get longer. Now knowing the markers for terminal hair. I can say I reached terminal a couple of times. I cut my hair short 12 years ago it was about waist length and grew back to about that length. I think my terminal has shortened. As a child my hair was always at hip lenth, without trims.

I remember often looking at my maternal grandmother's long hair. I coul not figure out how it was always the same length without trims.


Terminal at 53 inches...been at this length for years. The longest individual hairs are 42". Each hair still grows at 1/2 inch per month though.

All the markers for terminal:
Consistent length for more than a year
Fairytale ends
Regrowth after a trim is normal growth rate til terminal length is reached again.

WOW trolleypup, that is long hair.

Thank you for the markers of terminal hair.

I will leave my hair grow until I see no more growth before I start cutting out the layers from my last major hair cut.

MeMyselfandI
March 15th, 2008, 11:35 AM
I should add that I did not often have Fairytale ends.

I thought they looked to straggly when my hair would be hanging loose. I always cut them and let the hair grow again. I thought that all hair was suppose to be one straight blunt cut. As soon as I cut them and put my hair in a bun, I would miss those ends, since they formed a much neater bun then my blunt cut hair.

spidermom
March 15th, 2008, 12:55 PM
The formula for terminal length:
Number of years that the hair grows times number of inches hair grows per year.

For example, a hair that grows for 6 years and gains an average of 6 inches per year will be terminal at 36 inches long. If you've cut 2 inches off of it in trims as it grows, then it will be terminal at 34 inches long.

I remember my grandmother having hip-length braids all the time I knew her.

Buddaphlyy
March 15th, 2008, 01:26 PM
Hair must have a lifespan as well, though, right?

Yes, hair has a life cycle. It has 3 stages: anagen (growing), catagen (resting), and telogen (shedding). Most growth cycles are between 2 -7 years, but some people claim some can last as long as 10


Otherwise someone who kept their hair at say, APL all the time would never shed any because their hair would never hit terminal.

No, their hair would still shed. What one does to the ends of hair does not effect the roots. So just because one doesn't retain their length until terminal doesn't mean that the hair didn't grow to the end of it's cycle.

ChloeDharma
March 15th, 2008, 03:41 PM
Yes, terminal length makes sense.....i do think there are often false terminal lengths though. For example diet might be effecting it, or illness, or handling.....and then once those are fixed the hair can go on to grow to its actual terminal length.

I can't remember her name now but there was one member who replied on a thread about this ages ago, and she said that her hair always used to only grow to a certain length then stop (for arguments sake lets say waistlength....my memory is rubbish) but she always wore it down. Once she changed some habits and kept it up all the time it started growing again and got MUCH longer. So untill all other factors are taken into account don't give up hope of a few more inches :)

Kirin
March 15th, 2008, 07:37 PM
There is a thought out there, that terminal is affected by the growing phase, but that that phase can be "cut short" (no pun intended) by the weight of the hair. That the thickness, and weight of hair reaches a point, then stops, helping determine ones terminal length.

I do not know how true this is, however, the theory is, hair worn up, taking the weight off a vertical down pull on the hairs, can lengthen terminal length.

Mojavewolf
March 15th, 2008, 08:30 PM
Well,I dont want to believe in Terminal length but I have to face the fact my hair has not grown in ay least two years! But then again,I have had alot of stress factors in my life and a tragedy..My hair seems to fall out...I also have lived for about three years where the water is horible and hard and full of minerals..Nasty well water here...

trolleypup
March 15th, 2008, 11:12 PM
There is a thought out there, that terminal is affected by the growing phase, but that that phase can be "cut short" (no pun intended) by the weight of the hair. That the thickness, and weight of hair reaches a point, then stops, helping determine ones terminal length.

I do not know how true this is, however, the theory is, hair worn up, taking the weight off a vertical down pull on the hairs, can lengthen terminal length.
Doesn't seem to work this way for me.

My routine has always been some version of benign neglect...with better routines at LHC, I've gained maybe a half inch on the thinnest ends over two years.

ilovelonghair
March 17th, 2008, 04:35 AM
Where did you hear about this "7 times" thing? I thought everywhere say each follicle can grow 10 - 20 hairs in a lifetime?


I don't know where I heard that.

I wonder how terminal lenght works for people whith hair like this:

http://i252.photobucket.com/albums/hh17/ilovelonghair/extremelylong.jpg


I wanted to find that picture of the german lady with the 5 meter long hair, but I can't find it anywhere.

Beesweet
March 17th, 2008, 06:04 AM
Ever heard of someone having a terminal length at shoulders or bra strap?
My aunt said hers wouldn't grow past a level between shoulder and BSL ever, but she had very dark hair that she colored Barbie blond for years.

I just worry because I have never had my hair past shoulder length, where it is now, in my life and I am growing it for the first time with some doubt as to my ability to have it long. I am doing everything "right" -- taking great care and other things, but every time I lose a hair I think, "Dang! That's one hair that's going to take at least two years to get back where it was.
And if I lose 50 hairs per day (a number I heard is normal shedding).....that seems like a losing cycle somehow.

I am stuck in shoulder purgatory and am pretty blue about my hair right now.....
Just wanted to chime in.....

tiny_teesha
March 17th, 2008, 08:33 AM
As a kid i reached a bit more then classic, with taper, but it was very neglected and fine and washed with baby shampoo (wrong pH for hair). On my now (i kept the chopped of braid) It reaches TB, so i know i can at least get to TB!!!
I do not want to get more then knee, TB would be awesome. (I never want hair shorter then waist [as me now] and i think TB and Classic and Knee would look nice.)

I am always changing my mind on it but if i grow to knee once (IF I CAN!) I can then chop it to TB if i desire. Then i can see if Knee is good for me.

trolleypup
March 17th, 2008, 03:56 PM
I don't know where I heard that.

I wonder how terminal length works for people with hair like this:
Same way...just a longer cycle. The picture shows taper, as you would expect with terminal length hair.

Just as there are people with very long terminal lengths, there are people with very short terminal lengths. A six month cycle is not unheard of.

spidermom
March 17th, 2008, 04:13 PM
I often shed hairs that are 2-4 inches long. I can tell they were shed because there is a root bulb on one end. I'm glad that all my hair doesn't have such a short terminal length! I did have a friend whose hair never grew longer than between APL and BSL. She was half American Indian, and her hair was thick and nearly black - very pretty hair. She didn't do anything bad to it, but it never grew any longer. The last time I saw her, she hadn't had her hair cut for about 8 years.

Ohio Sky
March 17th, 2008, 06:18 PM
Hm I googled it and it does grow...but not very long :-)
http://en.allexperts.com/q/Pathology-1640/hair-nail-growth-death.htm

"In a way it is true up to certain limit where the growth post mortum stop
The only part of hair that's still alive is the follicle, which has its own blood supply. Once that supply is gone, there can be no growth. Fingernails are the same way."


I feel obligated to chime in, as I actually work in a mortuary and have noticed these things and done some really odd research. The part about the blood supply is true, but theres more to it. When you die, all fluid in your body drains to the lowest point, causing a discoloration known as morbid lividity. Where this point is depends on what position you are in when you die. If you die with your arms down and some of the blood remains in your hands, then yes, the fingernails do actually continue to grow, but not much. Same with hair, but its harder to tell, and usually only happens on the backside of the head, or on the side, whichever was on the pillow (which is usually where people die).
As a side note, embalming ceases all bodily functions that may continue for any amount of time after death.
Nothing to add on terminal length exept I dont think it really exists, just have to chime in whenever anyone mentions death. :D

MeMyselfandI
March 17th, 2008, 06:44 PM
Yes, terminal length makes sense.....i do think there are often false terminal lengths though. For example diet might be effecting it, or illness, or handling.....and then once those are fixed the hair can go on to grow to its actual terminal length.

I can't remember her name now but there was one member who replied on a thread about this ages ago, and she said that her hair always used to only grow to a certain length then stop (for arguments sake lets say waistlength....my memory is rubbish) but she always wore it down. Once she changed some habits and kept it up all the time it started growing again and got MUCH longer. So untill all other factors are taken into account don't give up hope of a few more inches :)

I find the idea of terminal length being effected by how you wear your hair very intresting.

My hair is down 95 % of the times. In the summer it goes into buns or ponytails for a couple of hours. I

I think things like diet, personal health, stessors affect hair growth, but do they affect terminal length?

That picture of the lady with the long hair is amazing. There is an Indian man who has long hair as well.

ChloeDharma
March 17th, 2008, 07:00 PM
I find the idea of terminal length being effected by how you wear your hair very intresting.

My hair is down 95 % of the times. In the summer it goes into buns or ponytails for a couple of hours. I

I think things like diet, personal health, stessors affect hair growth, but do they affect terminal length?

That picture of the lady with the long hair is amazing. There is an Indian man who has long hair as well.

I'll give you an example......last year i was rushed into hospital with a diabetic condition where the blood turns to acid, this had built up over time and my hair had been shedding. A couple of months afterwards i was loosing hair by the handful and have now gone down to an i thickness from previously being a midish range ii.
Illness like that can triger a condition called telogen effluvium where a much greater proportion of hairs prematurely enter the resting phase as a reaction to illness, stress and i think malnutrition.
It makes sense that if it can happen that dramatically then its likely to be a factor in terminal length. Not saying that someones genetic terminal length can be extended with diet (though i'm open to the idea, i just cant prove it) but i do think that a chronic lack of nutrition or a health problem would cause a shorter growth cycle.

EdG
March 17th, 2008, 09:08 PM
I've noticed that terminal length is different on different parts of my scalp. I have some hairs (on the back of my head) that are still growing. Other hairs never seem to get longer than 1-2 feet. The resulting taper cannot be described by a single number. :)
Ed

ilovelonghair
March 19th, 2008, 01:59 AM
I often shed hairs that are 2-4 inches long.


I have that too, it's absolutely weird, they are stunted in growth, they are not like the long hairs I shed, they are much thinner. I hope it's just a temporairy thing, it's something that I've only noticed lately.

freznow
March 19th, 2008, 02:06 AM
I think everyone has the shorter terminal length thing. I took a survey once, and even though only about 5 people responded, in every single person about 3 or so inches down from the nape, the thickness dropped dramatically. That means that there are a whole bunch of short hairs that just won't grow longer than that. There can't be that much decrease just with damage.

I believe in terminal length, but I also believe that it's a lot longer than most people think it is. (Often, it's damage or a stall that's causing a 'fake' terminal, IMO) On the other hand, I totally wouldn't mind if my hair grew forever :D Could just trim it when it gets too long, but don't have to worry about being too short.

Hairstorm
March 19th, 2008, 01:15 PM
Can you imagine if hair grew forever? We'd all need capes to trail behind us on which to rest the hair, or perhaps we could have attendants to carry it for us. When walking, we'd have to watch out for trailing hair so we wouldn't step on it. We'd all be like kings and queens.

Ohio Sky
March 19th, 2008, 01:20 PM
Can you imagine if hair grew forever? We'd all need capes to trail behind us on which to rest the hair, or perhaps we could have attendants to carry it for us. When walking, we'd have to watch out for trailing hair so we wouldn't step on it. We'd all be like kings and queens.

But then who would carry our attendants' hair? :confused:

Hairstorm
March 19th, 2008, 01:57 PM
But then who would carry our attendants' hair? :confused:

And the attendants' attendants' hair... :twisted:

Emichiee
March 19th, 2008, 01:59 PM
I got a question:

I heard somewhere that a hair follicle can only produce and hair 7 times and then it dies off, I think this cannot be true, because otherwise there would be many bald people walking around: the ones with a short terminal hair lenght, lets say 2 years. Those people would be bald before they are adults.

So how does this work?

I read that most follicles never stop working but the anagen phase shortens and hair might get thinner.

dagonlilly
March 19th, 2008, 08:17 PM
Ever heard of someone having a terminal length at shoulders or bra strap?
My aunt said hers wouldn't grow past a level between shoulder and BSL ever, but she had very dark hair that she colored Barbie blond for years.



My mother in law hair has never been past her shoulders in the 14 years I have known her and it is not from the lack of trying. But I think her's has been abused by cancer treatments , smoking, and poor diet.

Ellswyth
March 19th, 2008, 08:45 PM
In response to the old photo: we also don't know how tall that lady is. I'm guessing short, because that's how she looks. So she might be about 4 foot 2 for example.

MadPirateBippy
March 20th, 2008, 01:36 AM
Let's not forget that Lady Godiva's hair seemed to grow better when she just drank more water, so in the case of TrolleyPup, for instance, if there were supplements, water increase, spending time in saunas to increase surface circulation, massages and such, his terminal might get longer...

At that point, you have to ask, am I still having fun with this? For most people I'd guess the answer was no...

I've been interested in calorie restricted diets for reducing aging, perhaps it'd be interesting to see if a CR diet would increase terminal hair length?

Javadandy
March 23rd, 2008, 11:32 AM
My husband swears by water. His hair grows amazingly fast and he can lose a haircut in 3 weeks with swimming. He says for maximum growth, I should swim everyday and thoroughly soak my hair. I guess in hind sight, my best growth has always been after extended days at the pool. Swimming lessons, etc. that keep me poolside with the kids. We don't have a pool and in the many places we have lived, pools were only sort of an option. So I guess that leaves long baths?:?

*Wednesday*
February 1st, 2018, 09:34 PM
All the markers for terminal:
Consistent length for more than a year
Fairytale ends
Regrowth after a trim is normal growth rate til terminal length is reached again.

Is fairytale ends a sign of approaching terminal?

Goatcraft
February 2nd, 2018, 06:55 AM
Is fairytale ends a sign of approaching terminal?

I think it just depends. I started to get fairytale ends when my hair was at waist length.. maybe even before that.
I actually cut my hair to the top of my hips in November because I truly believed I had reached terminal..
Well, my hair is now even longer than it was before I decided to cut it. Halfway down my bum.

So yeah, I think it depends on the person. For me, personally, fairtale ends have not meant 'the end'.

*Wednesday*
February 2nd, 2018, 10:39 AM
I think it just depends. I started to get fairytale ends when my hair was at waist length.. maybe even before that.
I actually cut my hair to the top of my hips in November because I truly believed I had reached terminal..
Well, my hair is now even longer than it was before I decided to cut it. Halfway down my bum.

So yeah, I think it depends on the person. For me, personally, fairtale ends have not meant 'the end'.

Thank you. ☺. I love your hair in your signature.

Guitargod
February 2nd, 2018, 02:26 PM
Is fairytale ends a sign of approaching terminal?
If you're at terminal then you will have fairy-tale ends.
But that doesn't mean you are close to terminal just because you have them. They can also be caused by damage and individual hairs growing at different rates.

Xan
February 9th, 2018, 09:27 PM
Can you imagine if hair grew forever? We'd all need capes to trail behind us on which to rest the hair, or perhaps we could have attendants to carry it for us. When walking, we'd have to watch out for trailing hair so we wouldn't step on it. We'd all be like kings and queens.

I love your thinking imagine floor plus, id be thrilled with knee but I would love to have floor+ hair if I can get there, how awesome I saw pics of Susan L. when her hair was long how amazing. :) ;)

Alun
February 11th, 2018, 03:51 PM
The paternal grandmother theory is interesting. Unfortunately, mine died before I was born, and I don't even know what she looked like.

OTOH, my maternal grandmother had very long hair. I don't know how long. I don't think I ever saw it down, but she used to wear crown braids. She not only believed in Water Only, she would only wash it with rainwater they collected in a barrel.

ETA: The latter lived 1897-1979, and passed on a week before what would have been her 80th birthday.

I don't seem to be able to grow beyond waist, but my hair is normally loose.