As superficial as it seems, hair has the power to weigh us down and lift us up both mentally and physically. A bad haircut can make you want to hide and a good one can make you feel like a million bucks. Hair also has a functional effect in protecting our scalp from severe weather conditions.
The hairs on our heads aren’t the only ones that matter. Our eyebrows frame our faces, and the hair found at our armpits helps to expel moisture (when our skin is dry enough, it can prevent the development of bacteria that causes unpleasant odors).
Interested in learning more facts about hair from both the past and present time? Scroll below to read some bizarre trivia.
#1. Recognize this It Girl from the 1976 Winter Olympic? Dorothy Hamill popularized the wedge haircut after winning gold at age 19.
#2. Several studies indicate that redheads, who have a mutation in a gene that affects their hair color, are more sensitive to thermal pain and resistant to certain types of pain blockers.
#3. Fewer than 4% of the world’s population have natural red hair.
#4. Dinka people of the Bahr el Ghazal region in the Republic of Sudan don bronze hair after repeated washings in cow urine.
#5. Troy Polamalu, formerly of the Pittsburgh Steelers, made worldwide news when he insured his hair for $1 million under Lloyd’s of London.
#6. Approximately 70 percent of American women use hair-coloring products.
#7. The hair on your face grows faster than other hair on your body.
#8. There is an obsessive compulsive order called trichotillomania in which an individual has a compulsive urge to pull out their own hair, leading to hair loss and even balding.
#9. The results of one study revealed that “Rapunzel’s hair could easily support the weight of a man.”
Walt Disney Animation Studios
#10. While there is no solid evidence, historical documents including this cartoon hint at the idea that at one time fashionable eyebrows were made from mouse skin.
#11. Cavemen scraped off facial hair with rocks to remove and prevent mites. The Ancient Egyptians developed tools more closely related to modern day razors.
#12. Researchers from MIT concluded that eyebrows were more vital to facial recognition than eyes.
#13. In extreme temperatures, your hair can freeze and break off.
#14. Studies have shown that women feel more “fun” after dying their hair a lighter shade. Rachel McAdams, pictured here as Regina George in Mean Girls, is a natural brunette.
#15. Bone marrow is the fastest growing tissue, and the second is hair.
#16. The longest hair extension was achieved by Nikola Kulezic of Serbia on model Ivana Knezevic in 2013. The piece measured at over 2,500 ft.
Guinness World Records
#17. Valery Smagliy of Kiev believes that he has the longest pair of lashes in the world. He noticed that they’d grown after changing his diet, but he hasn’t yet revealed what special food sparked the change. He has since trimmed them.
#18. As far as forensic examinations go, one cannot tell a person’s gender from a strand of hair. Educated guesses can be made based on the type or amount of hair product used, but these aren’t always so straightforward.
#19. Merovingian Kings, a Salian Frank Dynasty, wore their hair long. While it is widely believed that this hairstyle had roots in royal symbolism, some historians argue that all free Franks with the exception of the lower class wore their hair in similar fashion.
#20. Blonde hair isn’t only seen in Caucasian populations. Melanesians, among other Oceanic people, also have lighter hair colors due to a mutation specific to South Pacific regions.
#21. The mohawk hairstyle is derived from the tribe of the Iroquois Confederation with the same name, who plucked the sides of their hair so that the middle grew longer. The version of the mohawk with shaved sides can be credited to Pawnee warriors.
#22. American actress and dancer Rita Hayworth dyed her black hair red and raised her hairline.
#23. Hippocrates, or the Father of Medicine, recommended a concoction of opium, essence of roses, wine, and the oil of green olives or a mixture of cumin, pigeon droppings, crushed horseradish, and nettles for balding. He sometimes used pigeon droppings alone for this problem.
#24. Tran Van Hay was a Vietnamese herbalist who was known as the man with the longest locks in the world. He had kept his hair uncut and unwashed for many years, because he would often get sick after a haircut when he was younger. Aged 79, Hay died of natural causes in 2010.