Why do grandparents have grey hair?

And not just grandparents too!

Professor Hallux

Here’s what Professor Hallux has to say:

Great question! Hair comes in all sorts of colours – yellow, orange, red, brown and black.

But whatever the colour, why does hair turn white as we get older? To find out why you need to take a closer look at a hair!

Hair is made of two parts – the long wavy shaft and the root under the surface.

The root is surrounded by a follicle that houses pigment cells containing a chemical called melanin. The more melanin you have, the darker your hair will be.

GeorgeOf course, if someone’s hair is blue or green then that’s NOTHING to do with melanin. That’s called Hair Dye.

As you get older, less melanin is produced in your follicles and so like a felt tip that’s running out of ink, your hair gets lighter and lighter.

There can be a change in the amount of melanin produced at any time, so you can get grey or white hair at any age. But it’s normally only when you get older.

So if your parents say you’ve given them grey hair tell them that’s rubbish! They’re just OLD!

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