Personal Care

Why doesn’t Pubic Hair Turn Gray

Picture of an older man

As soon as we are born we begin to age.  I hate to be a pessimist but it is true.  From the moment we are brought into this world, travelling down the birth canal and into the light breathing our first breath, from this point on every breath and every day are a step towards death.  Now, I do not want you to freak out or anything, time does pass by quickly but you should still try to enjoy your life and all the experiences it throws at you.  What I want you to get a sense of is the fact that from the time we are born we age and as we age there are certain changes both inside and outside the body that occur as we climb the ladder.  An example of these certain body changes is your hair.  Yes your hair as you age will most likely go through a number of changes from colour changes, to changes in thickness, and in some cases even falling out completely.  One of the biggest fears out there of people who are starting to get older is whether or not their hair is going to turn grey or even worse fall out, leaving them bald.  More often than not everyone’s hair will at least turn grey.  Another large concern of many over the age of forty who have noticed the greying of their head hairs is the possibility of their pubic hair turning grey.  So can your pubic hair turn grey?

In order to answer this question we need to look at two things.  For starters what exactly pubic hair is and secondly what gives hair, in general, its colour.

Pubic hair is the hair in your genital area, including the frontal genital area, the crotch, and it can sometimes be found at top of the inside of your legs, forming the area known as the pubic region.  Pubic hair grows as a result of the androgens (steroid hormones) on the skin that are present in your genital area.  Therefore making your pubic hair an example of androgenic hair, which is grows only after puberty and is different from the hair on your head and other parts of your body.  It is important to realize that pubic hair is different from the hair on your head and so when it comes to the idea of greying of the hair you should realize that this would occur differently in both.

Hair colour changes are a natural part of life and it can be one of the most obvious signs of aging.  Hair colour is caused by a pigment known as melanin, which is produced by hair follicles.  Most of the time with aging your hair follicles will produce less melanin.  More specifically melanocytes, which are present in both the skin (epidermal) and in your hair (bulbar), are what give both your skin and your hair its colour.  Bulbar melanocytes determine how dark or light your hair colour is.  The activity of these melanocytes can be hereditary or affected by disease but its actions are not affected by stress.  So your kids, job, or spouse stressing you out can not cause your hair to turn grey.  Bulbar melanogenic cells (area where hairs stem from) actually produce two different types of melanocytes.

One being eumelanin a very dark melanin granule that results in dark hair and the second is phaeomelanin which is a lighter melanin granule that results in blonde or red hair.  According to age and heredity these melanocytes are present in different combinations in hair.  An example of this is how even though many people have very light hair as children they often get darker hair as they become adults.  In a similar fashion these different melanocytes are present in differing amounts across different types of hair.  In the case of pubic hair eumelanin (dark) melanocytes are in greater proportion than phaeomelanin (light) melanocytes making your pubic hair darker than the hair on your head.  All over your body the natural hair colours you have are a result of the eumelanins and phaeomelanins working at different levels, with everyone’s hair on the whole being different.  And just as your body changes throughout your life so can these levels, affecting your hair’s colour, even turning it grey; including the possibility of your pubic hair also turning grey if these melanocytes come up with proper combination of light and dark to do so.  Always remember though that greying all over the body from the top of your head to the tips of your toes is genetically determined.  However, because you pubic hair is at least a decade and a bit younger than the hair on your head it should take it longer to grey.  Also because of the fact that it is a different type of hair increases your chances of the grey to wait or to not show up at all.

In closing, just like the hairs on your head, the hairs down there can turn grey.  It might take them longer than the ones on top but the ones down bellow can shine silver.  Don’t believe me ask Grandpa.  I am sorry that might have been crossing the line with that but I could not help myself.

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