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Hair Growth By Age: Understanding The Natural Progression

UPGUYS > Blog > Hair > Hair Growth by Age: Understanding the Natural Progression
The person who wrote this article

Written by the UPGUYS Editorial Team
Published on July 11, 2023

Understanding the rate at which hair grows at different ages is essential for setting realistic expectations and maintaining healthy hair. Hair growth is influenced by a multitude of factors, including genetics, overall health, and lifestyle choices.

By exploring the correlation between age and hair growth rate, individuals can gain insights into the natural progression of hair growth and make informed decisions regarding hair care and treatments.

In this article, we will discuss the significance of comprehending hair growth rate by age and examine the various factors that can impact hair growth, providing a comprehensive understanding of this vital aspect of hair health.

We are going to cover the following:

Hair Growth Basics

The natural hair growth cycle consists of three distinct phases: anagen, catagen, and telogen. Understanding these phases is crucial for comprehending the overall hair growth rate and the duration of each phase.

1- Anagen Phase (Growth): This is the active phase where hair follicles produce new hair cells. The duration of the anagen phase varies individually, but it typically lasts between two to seven years. Hair growth occurs during this phase, contributing significantly to the overall hair growth rate.

2- Catagen Phase (Transition): Following the anagen phase, hair enters the catagen phase, which is a transitional period. This phase lasts for about two weeks. During catagen, hair growth stops, and the hair follicle prepares to enter the resting phase.

3- Telogen Phase (Resting): The telogen phase is a resting period for the hair follicle. It lasts around two to three months before the old hair sheds and new hair starts growing again. Approximately 10 to 15 percent of hairs are in the telogen phase at any given time.

The duration of each phase and the ratio of hairs in each phase contribute to the overall hair growth rate. By understanding the natural hair growth cycle and the average duration of each phase, individuals can gain insights into the factors affecting hair growth and maintain realistic expectations for their hair's growth rate.

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Hair Growth in Early Life

During infancy and early childhood, hair growth follows distinct patterns and reaches significant milestones. Here are some key aspects to consider:

1- Hair Growth Patterns:

In the first few months of life, many infants are born with fine, soft hair, known as lanugo. This hair is usually shed within the first few weeks, making way for vellus hair, which is thin, short, and barely noticeable. As the child grows, vellus hair gradually transitions into terminal hair, which is thicker, longer, and pigmented. The rate of hair growth varies among children, but on average, hair grows at a rate of about half an inch (1.25 cm) per month during infancy and early childhood.

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2- Hair Growth Milestones:

Between 6 months and two years, most children have a full head of hair, although the texture and thickness can differ. Hair growth milestones include the development of different hair textures, changes in hair color, and the emergence of new hair patterns, such as curls or waves. It is important to note that hair growth can vary among individuals, and some children may experience slower or faster growth rates.

3- Influencing Factors:

Several factors can affect hair growth in infants and children:

  1. Nutrition: Adequate nutrition, including a balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals, is crucial for healthy hair growth. Nutrients like protein, iron, zinc, and biotin play significant roles in supporting hair health.
  2. Health Conditions: Certain health conditions or medical treatments can impact hair growth. For example, underlying medical conditions, scalp infections, or medications may influence hair growth patterns. If you have concerns about your child's hair growth, consulting a healthcare professional is recommended.
  3. Hair Care Practices: Gentle hair care practices, such as using mild shampoos suitable for young children, avoiding excessive heat styling or chemical treatments, and regularly moisturizing the scalp, can contribute to maintaining healthy hair growth in infants and children.

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Understanding the patterns, milestones, and influencing factors of hair growth in infancy and early childhood allows parents and caregivers to track and promote healthy hair development. While individual variation is normal, if you have specific concerns about your child's hair growth, consulting a healthcare professional or pediatrician can provide further guidance and reassurance.

Hair Growth in Adolescence and Young Adulthood

During adolescence and young adulthood, significant changes occur in hair growth rates and patterns as a result of hormonal shifts and puberty. Understanding these changes can help individuals navigate the transition and maintain healthy hair.

Here are some key aspects to consider:

1- Hormonal Influence:

Hormones, such as androgens, play a crucial role in hair growth during adolescence. Androgens, including testosterone, can stimulate hair follicles, leading to increased hair growth in various areas, such as the scalp, face (in males), underarms, and pubic regions. However, hormonal fluctuations can also lead to variations in hair growth patterns among individuals.

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2- Hair Growth Patterns:

Adolescence is often characterized by changes in hair texture, density, and growth rate. It is common for hair to become thicker, coarser, and oilier during this stage due to increased sebum production. Additionally, some individuals may experience changes in hair color or curl pattern. Hair growth rates can also vary during this period, with some individuals experiencing faster growth while others may have slower growth rates.

3- Individual Variation:

It's important to note that hair growth patterns can differ significantly among individuals during adolescence and young adulthood. Genetic factors, ethnic background, and overall health can influence hair growth and its characteristics. Some individuals may experience more pronounced changes in hair growth rate and patterns, while others may notice minimal differences.

Understanding the hormonal influence and common patterns of hair growth during adolescence and young adulthood provides valuable insights for individuals navigating this stage. It is essential to maintain a healthy hair care routine, including proper cleansing, conditioning, and protection from heat and styling damage.

If you have concerns about your hair growth or notice any drastic changes, consulting a healthcare professional or dermatologist can provide further guidance and ensure optimal hair health.

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Hair Growth in Adulthood: Factors and Individual Variation

During adulthood, the hair growth rate may undergo changes influenced by various factors, including hormonal fluctuations, stress levels, and lifestyle choices. Understanding the dynamics of hair growth in this stage can provide insights into maintaining healthy hair.

Here are key aspects to consider:

1- Factors Affecting Hair Growth: Hormonal changes, such as those experienced during pregnancy, menopause, or certain medical conditions, can impact hair growth. Additionally, high levels of stress and unhealthy lifestyle choices, such as poor nutrition, smoking, or excessive heat styling, may contribute to hair loss or slower hair growth.

2- Normal Hair Growth Rate for Adults: On average, hair grows about half an inch (1.25 cm) per month during adulthood. However, it is essential to recognize that hair growth rates can vary among individuals. Factors like genetics, overall health, and hair care practices can influence the rate at which hair grows. Some individuals may experience faster hair growth, while others may notice slower growth.

3- Individual Variation: Each person's hair growth journey is unique. Factors such as genetics play a significant role in determining hair growth patterns and the rate at which hair grows. Some individuals may have naturally faster or slower hair growth due to genetic predispositions. It is essential to focus on maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, proper hair care, and stress management, to support optimal hair growth.

Understanding the factors that can affect hair growth and the normal hair growth rate for adults allows individuals to make informed decisions about their hair care routine. Prioritizing a healthy lifestyle and adopting hair care practices tailored to individual needs can contribute to maintaining healthy hair growth and overall hair health throughout adulthood.

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Changes and Age-Related Patterns of Hair Growth

As individuals age, changes occur in hair growth rate, reflecting the natural progression of the aging process. Understanding these changes can help individuals navigate the effects of aging on hair and adjust their hair care routine accordingly.

Here are key aspects to consider:

1- Slowing Down of Hair Growth: With age, the rate of hair growth tends to slow down gradually. Hair follicles may spend more time in the resting phase (telogen) and have shorter periods of active growth (anagen). This can result in a reduced hair growth rate overall.

2- Age-Related Hair Changes: Aging can lead to various changes in hair, such as thinning, graying, and reduced hair density. Hair may become finer, and there may be a decrease in the number of active hair follicles. Additionally, melanin production decreases, resulting in a loss of pigment and the appearance of gray or white hair.

3- Individual Variation: It is important to recognize that hair changes with age can vary among individuals. Genetic factors, lifestyle choices, and overall health can influence the extent and progression of age-related hair changes. Some individuals may experience more noticeable effects, while others may have minimal changes.

Understanding the changes in hair growth rate and age-related hair changes allows individuals to adapt their hair care routine to support healthy hair as they age. Proper hair care, such as using gentle products, protecting hair from excessive heat and styling damage, and maintaining a balanced diet, can help maintain the overall health and appearance of aging hair.

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Consulting a healthcare professional or dermatologist can provide personalized advice and recommendations for managing hair changes in the aging process.

Influential Factors on Hair Growth Rate

Hair growth rate can be influenced by various factors, regardless of age. Understanding these factors is crucial for maintaining healthy hair growth and addressing potential concerns.

Here are key aspects to consider:

1- Genetics:

Genetic factors play a significant role in determining hair growth rates and patterns. Individuals inherit unique genetic traits that can impact the rate at which hair grows. Some individuals may have genetically faster or slower hair growth.

2- Health Conditions:

Certain health conditions, such as thyroid disorders, hormonal imbalances, and autoimmune conditions, can affect hair growth rates. Additionally, nutritional deficiencies or chronic illnesses can contribute to changes in hair growth. It is important to address underlying health conditions to support optimal hair growth.

3- Medications and Treatments:

Some medications, such as chemotherapy drugs, can affect hair growth rate. Additionally, certain treatments, like radiation therapy, can have an impact. If experiencing changes in hair growth due to medication or treatment, it is advisable to consult with a healthcare professional.

4. Environmental Factors:

Environmental factors, such as exposure to pollutants, harsh chemicals, or excessive heat styling, can affect hair health and growth rate. Protecting hair from environmental stressors and practicing proper hair care can support healthy hair growth.

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Maintaining a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet rich in essential nutrients, regular exercise, and stress management, is important for supporting optimal hair growth. Additionally, adopting healthy hair care practices, such as using gentle products, avoiding excessive heat styling, and minimizing chemical treatments, can contribute to maintaining healthy hair growth at any age. Consulting with a healthcare professional or dermatologist can provide further guidance tailored to individual needs.

Nurturing Healthy Hair Growth

Maintaining healthy hair growth is essential at any age. By adopting certain practices and incorporating key elements into daily routines, individuals can promote optimal hair growth.

Here are some tips and recommendations to consider:

1- Balanced Diet: A well-rounded diet rich in essential nutrients supports healthy hair growth. Include protein, vitamins (such as biotin, vitamin E, and vitamin D), minerals (like iron and zinc), and omega-3 fatty acids in your meals. Incorporate foods like fish, nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to nourish your hair from within.

2- Proper Hair Care Routine: Establish a gentle and consistent hair care routine. Use mild shampoos and conditioners suitable for your hair type. Avoid excessive heat styling, chemical treatments, and harsh hair products that can damage the hair. Regularly trim the ends to prevent split ends and promote healthy hair growth.

3- Scalp Care: Pay attention to scalp health as it forms the foundation for healthy hair growth. Keep your scalp clean, well-moisturized, and free from excessive oil or product buildup. Gently massage your scalp to stimulate blood circulation, which can promote hair growth.

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4- Stress Management: Chronic stress can negatively impact hair growth. Practice stress management techniques, such as exercise, meditation, deep breathing exercises, or engaging in activities you enjoy. Prioritize self-care and establish a healthy work-life balance to reduce stress levels.

3.Supplements and Hair Care Products: Consult with a healthcare professional or dermatologist to determine if supplements, such as biotin or other hair growth supplements, are suitable for you. Additionally, choose hair care products containing ingredients that promote hair health, such as keratin, collagen, or natural plant extracts.

Remember, promoting healthy hair growth requires consistency and patience. It is important to note that results may vary among individuals. If you have concerns about hair growth or experience significant changes, consulting with a healthcare professional or dermatologist can provide personalized guidance and recommendations tailored to your specific needs.

Expert Guidance for Hair Growth Concerns

When it comes to concerns about hair growth rate, seeking professional advice from a qualified healthcare professional or trichologist is crucial. These experts can provide personalized recommendations and treatments based on individual needs. Here's why professional guidance is important:

1- Accurate Assessment: A qualified healthcare professional or trichologist can accurately assess the factors contributing to hair growth concerns. They can evaluate your overall health, review your medical history, conduct necessary tests, and identify any underlying conditions that may be affecting hair growth.

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2- Tailored Recommendations: Based on the assessment, a professional can provide personalized recommendations for promoting healthy hair growth. They can suggest lifestyle modifications, dietary changes, and hair care routines that cater to your specific needs and address any underlying issues.

3- Available Treatments and Interventions: Healthcare professionals or trichologists can recommend appropriate treatments or interventions, depending on the underlying causes of hair growth concerns. This may include topical medications, laser therapy, PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) treatments, or other specialized therapies.

Consulting with a qualified professional ensures that you receive accurate assessments, personalized recommendations, and access to suitable treatments or interventions tailored to your unique hair growth concerns. If you have specific concerns or notice significant changes in your hair growth rate, scheduling an appointment with a healthcare professional or trichologist is recommended.


In conclusion, this guide has provided a comprehensive overview of hair growth rate by age, highlighting the natural progression of hair growth throughout different stages of life. Key points discussed include the factors influencing hair growth, such as genetics, health conditions, and lifestyle choices. By empowering individuals with knowledge and understanding, we aim to promote informed decision-making and realistic expectations regarding hair growth.

To maintain healthy hair growth, it is essential to adopt healthy hair practices, including a balanced diet, proper hair care routine, scalp care, and stress management. Seeking professional advice from qualified healthcare professionals or trichologists is recommended for any concerns about hair growth rate, as they can provide personalized assessments and recommendations.

For further information and guidance on hair growth and hair care, the following resources and references can be consulted:

1.Canadian Hair Research Foundation

2.American Academy of Dermatology

3.HealthLink BC - Hair Loss in Men and Women

4.National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases - Hair Loss Fact Sheet

5.Mayo Clinic - Hair Loss

These resources offer valuable insights, tips, and expert advice on hair growth, hair care, and addressing hair loss concerns. Stay informed, maintain healthy practices, and consult reliable sources for further information on promoting and maintaining healthy hair growth throughout life's different stages.


UPGUYS has strict sourcing guidelines to ensure our content is accurate and current. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We strive to use primary sources and refrain from using tertiary references.

This article is written for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information provided in the articles cannot and should not replace advice from a healthcare professional. Talk to your healthcare provider about any physical or mental health concerns or the risks and benefits of any treatment or medication.