Local News

Dec 3, 2009 11:54 AM by Steve Adamson

Rain and bad hair days on the way

No, this isn't a story about personalities or one's emotional state. This is about hair. We've all heard the term "bad hair day" and most of the time, those hair complaints stem from the amount of humidity in the air.

Truth be told, if you're blond, your hair is more sensitive to changes in humidity. And why is that, you ask? It has to do with the thickness of the hair shaft itself. If you were to examine a strand of blond hair and a strand of dark hair with a microscope, you would notice the blond hair is thinner. There's less room within the hair shaft to hold moisture, so blond hair reacts to changes in humidity faster than dark hair.

A Swiss physicist named Horace Benedict de Saussure built the first hair hygrometer in 1783 to measure humidity. The instrument used a strand of blond hair as the sensing device to measure the humidity levels.

Hair gets longer as moisture increases and it gets shorter as the air gets drier. "Bad hair days" occur when there is a lot of humidity in the air. The hair becomes more frizzy with the abundance of moisture. Now to set the record straight, everyone's hair is going to be affected by humidity. The difference is, it'll affect blond hair more rapidly than dark hair. And in case you're wondering, how is red or gray hair affected? It falls in between the reaction time of blonds and brunettes. Not as fast as blonds, but quicker than the dark hair.

With rain becoming more likely next week, get ready for some bad hair days on the way. Keep an eye on the blonds. Their hair will start frizzing out before the rain actually arrives!


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