3 Phases of Hair Growth Cycle


Hair growth starts since birth and will grow till old age. It is one of the most hard working part of your skin because it grows throughout your lifetime and hardly stops working.


Throughout the years, your hair is bombarded with chemicals from your shampoos, colorings, perms and conditioners. It faces wind and sun, sweat and pollution yet it still continues to grow. After a while, the hair follicle rests and then starts to produce a new hair follicle again. This is known as the hair growth cycle. Before you decide to start any hair growth treatment or any hash hairdressing service, it’ s good to understand how your hair grows first to give yourself better perspective and options when choosing your treatments.

Getting to Know Your Hair

Before we start explaining the hair growth cycle, let’ s take a look at the diagram below for a brief explanation of your hair.

Your hair follicle is a small complex organ which is a part of your skin. Some of the important parts are

  • Sebaceous gland
    The sebaceous glands produces sebum, a kind of oily substance that is responsible for protecting your hair from
  • Becoming dry
  • Brittle and cracked
  • Inhibits growth of microorganism on the skin

However, the glands can overproduce sebum that can cause oily scalp. This is usually caused by factors like stress and DHT.

  • Blood and lymph vessels
    The blood and lymph vessels are your energy and nutrient supply line to the skin and hair follicles. This supply will be disconnected from your hair follicle when it reaches the CATAGEN phase.
  • Arrector pilli muscle
    The Arrector pilli muscle is attached to your hair follicle, this soft muscle is responsible for making your hair stands up when you have goose bumps. It also function by raising the hair to catch the heat to keep you warm. Stem cells are found in the junction of this muscle and your hair follicle and are responsible the ongoing hair production during the ANAGEN phase.

The Hair Growth Cycle

There are basically 3 cycles that each hair follicle has to go through around 20 times in your life. Imagine it as a never ending process until it dies to produce your crown of glory. These 3 phases are known as


Let’ s get in depth with each of the hair phase.

The ANAGEN Phase

This is the first phase of your hair growth cycle which is also known as the growing phase. At any one time, 80 – 90 percent of your hair follicles on your scalp are in the ANAGEN phase. During this period

  • Your hair grows continuously
  • The growing will continue for 3 to 7 years
  • Grows at the rate of half an inch a month
  • The hair bulb produces your hair pigment
  • Blood supply provides nutrients and minerals to your hair
  • Looks thick and nourished


After the ANAGEN phase, your hair will turn into a transitional phase before going to rest. This short phase is known as the CATAGEN phase which last for 2 to 4 weeks. During this time,

  • Your hair detaches from the blood supply
  • The detached follicle will slowly shrink to about 1/6 its size
  • The hair bulb stops producing the color pigment
  • The bulb will be pushed upwards towards the surface when the new hair is formed
  • Approximately 2 – 3 % of your hair will be in this phase in your scalp


This is the final phase of your hair growth cycle. It is also known as the resting phase where your hair follicles will slowly fall off and replaced by a new hair.

  • Around 10 – 15 % of the hair in your scalp will be in TELOGEN phase
  • 50 – 100 hairs from this phase will shed daily
  • This period lasts for 3 months before the hair falls out
  • The hair follicles become weak and thin and you can easily pull them out – new hair follicle will emerge once the hair the hair falls.

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