25 Hair-Raising Facts About Hair


This week’s special episode of the List Show is the first in a new series we’re creating with Head & Shoulders about The World’s Smartest Hair. Over the next few months we’ll be telling you everything you’ve always wanted to know about your hair, your scalp, and how to keep both healthy and beautiful.

Why make a special series about hair? Because it’s surprisingly fascinating! In fact, we found so many incredible facts about hair that we couldn’t fit all of them into this video. Here are a few more bonus hair facts that we just had to share:

- We’re lucky that modern hair care has made it pretty easy to take care of our locks.  In years past, hair care could be pretty time-consuming and expensive. Just ask Queen Elizabeth I. She owned 80 red-haired wigs made of hair and silk. Really seems like she could have gotten by with no more than 60, doesn’t it?

- John mentions in the video that dandruff and a dry, itchy scalp aren’t exclusively winter problems – they happen year-round. That’s because cold weather doesn’t cause dandruff. Dandruff is the handiwork of a microbe called Malassezia globosa that lives on our scalps and interacts with sebum, the scalp’s natural oils. When this microbe reacts with sebum, the end result is an itchy, flaky scalp.

- Unfortunately, Malassezia globosa really gets around. If you’ve ever experienced dandruff, you’re not alone – 69 percent of people will experience dandruff at some point in their lives. And dandruff isn’t a hygiene problem, either – your personal sensitivity to the havoc the Malassezia wreaks determines whether or not you get a dry itchy scalp, not how carefully you wash. To control dandruff, you have to control this tricky little microbe. 

- So what’s the dandruff solution? Science! A compound called zinc pyrithione can target Malassezia in its hiding places to eliminate even the toughest dandruff problem. No more irritated scalp, no more itching. Thanks, zinc pyrithione!

- Even if you have thinning hair, be thankful that nobody is trying to actively take your hair away from you. Composer Franz Liszt was such a rockstar in his day that his fans would inundate him with requests for locks of his hair. Eventually, Liszt got so many of these letters that he had to get creative – he bought a dog and started sending snippings of the pooch’s fur to crazed fans.