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How Long Does It Take for Hair to Grow? 4 Phases of Hair Growth

What Determines How Long It Takes for Hair to Grow?

This is a question that many people ask, and unfortunately, there is no one definitive answer. How long it takes for hair to grow depends on a variety of factors:


As we age, our hair begins to gradually thin and receive fewer nutrients. As such, the older you become, the less your hair will grow and the more nutrients you will need to intake in order to maintain healthy hair.

Hair Type

Every person is born with slightly different hair types that vary in texture, durability, color, and so on. Some people are born with thinner hair that is more prone to breakage. Others are born with thicker hair that can knot and tangle easily.

Overall Health

Maintaining a balanced diet is one key part of hair growth and promoting hair growth. Without the necessary nutrients (which are discussed below), your hair will struggle to grow due to a variety of reasons.

Specific Health Conditions

As with maintaining overall health, sometimes that isn’t entirely in your control, such as if you have a chronic health condition or have had conditions including cancer.

What Is the Hair Growth Cycle and Its Stages?

Woman with long hair

Not everyone’s hair growth cycle is going to look and be the same, as indicated by the factors listed above. Your hair growth cycle will also change as you age and as your life changes, such as during higher times of stress or changes in your health unrelated to age.

Growth Phase (Anagen)

Hair growth begins in this stage and is the longest phase in the cycle, lasting between three and five years. However, this stage will vary from person to person based on several factors, as some hair can grow as long as up to seven years, and it differs between hair types.

For example, the hair on your face has a shorter anagen phase than the hair on your head. This is one way that changes as you age, as your head of hair may struggle to grow, but your facial hair (if applicable) will continue to grow almost as normal. During this phase, your hair follicles will continue to grow until either they are cut or until the phase stops.

Transition Phase (Catagen)

Once the anagen phase is over, the catagen phase begins and lasts up to ten days. During this phase, the hair on your scalp will begin to shrink. Your hair growth will also begin to slow down. Only between 5 and 10% of your hair is in the catagen phase at any moment in time.

Resting Phase (Telogen)

Next up is the resting, or telogen, phase, in which your hair isn’t growing, but also isn’t falling out just yet. This phase lasts approximately three months and between 10 and 15% of your follicles are in this stage.

Shedding Phase (Exogen)

The exogen stage was once combined with the third phase but recently separated to mark the beginning of the hair shedding process. It is normal to lose an average of 50 to 150 strands of hair every day, allowing room for new hair growth. This also depends on your hair type and other factors as well.

Can You Promote Healthy Hair Growth in the Anagen Phase?

It is possible to promote hair growth during this phase with the help of a few products to make your hair grow. You might consider trying caffeinated hair products. Similar to how many people drink coffee in the morning to kickstart their days, caffeinated products can help to stimulate hair strands on the scalp at a cellular level.

Improving your diet can also help promote hair growth, by increasing your intake of foods that contain biotin, collagen, omega-3 fats, vitamin D, and more. These foods include carrots, salmon, nuts, and eggs. Improving your diet now will also help as you age when hair fall becomes more common.

Hand holding collagen supplements

Another way to promote hair growth is through scalp massage. A daily scalp massage can help to improve blood circulation, which improves oxygen flow to your hair. Healthy hair grows best when properly “fed” not only with nutrients but proper blood flow and oxygen.

How to Make Hair Grow Faster

Frequent Trims to Keep Split Ends Away

Hair salon

Getting a trim every few months helps to manage split ends and existing breakage. If left unattended, small splits can lead to larger damage that would result in you having to cut more length off to preserve hair health.

Healthy Scalp, Healthy (Long) Hair

Taking care of your scalp and using products to protect scalp health is key in protecting each hair follicle throughout every stage. It’s important to keep your scalp free of dead skin cells, but while not disrupting the natural growth cycle.

Go Easy on the Shampoo

Washing your hair with shampoo

Washing your hair frequently and with a lot of shampoo and other hair products may seem like the best way to keep your hair fresh and clean, but this can, in fact, lead to more damage.

Shampoo, mixed with hot water, easily strips the hair of its natural oils. Your natural oils are needed to protect the strands from additional damage from your environment and styling tools. Also, pay attention to your hair type and what shampoo you are using. There are hair care products out there for every type of hair, so check out your options, or even ask a professional hair stylist.


This is one factor that we hear about constantly when talking about the human body. A balanced diet provides the body with the necessary nutrients it needs to function, including your hair, which needs a mix of vitamins and minerals as well to retain moisture, strength, and shine.

Don’t Use Heat Styling Tools Frequently

Although having stylish hair is nice, it’s recommended to find non-heat styling techniques to use. Thinning hair and fragile hair will be more susceptible to breaking after extensive heat styling, so it is also a good idea to use a heat protectant spray before using a curling or straightening iron.

Don’t Brush Wet Hair

Woman with wet hair

Brushing wet hair is more prone to breakage, as the strands are fresh and open. However, if your hair type is prone to tangling after washing, then using a gentle wide-tooth comb or detangling brush can assist in that process with minimal breakage.

Don’t Wash Your Hair With Hot Water

As with heat tools, hot water is capable of encouraging breakage. Luke warm water is preferable when washing hair.

Diluted Essential Oils

Essential oils are useful in helping to stimulate hair follicles to grow, including lavender, chamomile, thyme, and peppermint essential oil. They should be diluted with any carrier oil of your choosing, such as coconut, sunflower, mineral, or castor, to name a few.

Make your hair grow faster with oils

Increase intake of vitamins and minerals, including:

  • Omega-3 and DHA
  • Zinc
  • Biotin (vitamin B7)
  • Vitamin C
  • Iron
  • Vitamin D

What Can Affect Hair Growth?

The primary factor that affects hair growth is your genetics. Your genes can not only affect what type of hair you will end up having as you age but can also determine when it will stop growing and where and whether you are prone to hair loss. However, a healthy hair growth cycle can also be affected by your lifestyle, diet, health, and so on.

When Should You See a Doctor About Your Hair Growth?

If you are losing an extensive amount of hair at once, then you should consider calling your doctor to figure out what is causing the hair loss.

Also, if your hair is not growing, this could be a sign of a nutrient deficiency, which you might also want to contact and discuss with your doctor.

Hair loss on top of head

It can also be helpful to visit your doctor or ask during your next routine checkup, about ways to make your hair grow. They can offer guidance and what options you might have, especially if you are living with any health conditions.

What Can Impact Hair Growth and Recovery From Hair Loss

Pattern Hair Loss

This is most commonly due to genetics, as men typically inherit hair loss genes from their fathers. However, women due experience significant hair loss as they age as well, in addition to their hair thinning.

Alopecia Areata

This is a health condition that causes hair loss in any area of the body. This can include hair on the head and body hair. Alopecia areata also causes bald spots in these areas.

Scalp Psoriasis

This health condition looks similar to that of severe dandruff, but in fact, it is tick plaques that cover the scalp. Thankfully, hair loss due to this condition is temporary and easily treatable as you treat your psoriasis.

Hormonal Changes

Hormonal imbalance happens in life, expectedly or unexpectedly, and can cause hair loss. The most common causes of these changes are in bodies that experience pregnancy or menopause. If you are losing hair due to pregnancy, then this is often temporary.


Stress is a part of hormonal changes that can impact the way your hair grows. Major stressors or extended periods of stress can result in hair fall and can continue to do so until the stress decreases.

Thyroid Problems

An irregular thyroid has also been linked to a decrease in hair loss, as a result of hormonal changes.

Nutritional Deficiencies

As stated earlier, if you do not provide your body and hair with the nutrients it needs, then making your hair grow can be difficult. A lack of proper nutrition can lead to hair loss.

How Long Does It Take for Hair to Grow FAQs

Does Washing Your Hair Every Day Help With Hair Growth?

Braids in hair

No, the natural oils in your hair are necessary for protecting the strands from external sources of damage, including UV rays and heat. Natural oils also help in maintaining your hair’s natural shine and moisture. Washing your hair every day can lead to excessive dryness.

Does Weather Affect Hair Growth?

Yes! Various weather conditions, such as wind and rain, can impact not only how you’ve styled your hair, but how your hair grows. Dry air is more likely to suck the moisture out of your air, where humidity will make hair frizz, for example.

Does Your Hair Grow Slower As It Gets Longer?

Girl growing her hair

No, your hair length does not slow down its growth. Rather if your hair growth has slowed, it could be because of any number of factors, including age or diet.

How Long Does It Take for Hair to Grow After Waxing?

Getting a wax typically means you’ll be hair-free for at least six weeks since waxing pulls the follicles from their source.

Does Hair Grow Back Thicker?

No, while it may appear that way in the beginning, your hair will not grow back thicker after shaving or waxing.

How Long Does It Take for Hair to Grow Back After Chemo?

Woman with hair loss due to chemotherapy

Radiation therapy most often causes hair fall and so, many cancer patients opt to shave their hair. After their chemo has finished, there are drugs that help make your hair grow back, with varying results. In general, hair takes about a full year before returning to any substantial growth.

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