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Waxing Myths Debunked: Does Hair Really Grow Back Thicker and Darker?

One of the most persistent myths surrounding waxing is the belief that hair will grow back thicker and darker after treatment. This myth has been perpetuated for years, causing many people to avoid waxing altogether out of fear of undesirable hair regrowth. In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the science behind hair growth, examine the evidence (or lack thereof) supporting this myth, and provide insights into what you can actually expect from your hair after waxing.

Understanding Hair Growth

To understand why this myth is unfounded, it's important to first understand the basics of hair growth. Hair grows in cycles, with each strand going through three distinct phases:

1. Anagen Phase

The anagen phase is the active growth phase, where the hair is firmly rooted in the follicle and growing outward. This phase can last anywhere from 2 to 6 years, depending on the individual and the area of the body.

Hair Growth Cycle

2. Catagen Phase

The catagen phase is a transitional phase that lasts about 2 to 3 weeks. During this time, the hair follicle shrinks and detaches from the dermal papilla, the structure that supplies the follicle with blood and nutrients.

3. Telogen Phase

The telogen phase is the resting phase, where the hair follicle is dormant and the hair is shed. This phase typically lasts around 3 to 4 months, after which the cycle begins again with the anagen phase.

The Science Behind Hair Thickness and Color

Hair thickness and color are determined by a combination of genetic and hormonal factors. The size of the hair follicle and the amount of melanin (pigment) produced by the follicle are the primary determinants of hair thickness and color, respectively.

Waxing, on the other hand, is a physical process that removes hair from the root. It does not affect the underlying follicle or the factors that determine hair thickness and color.

Debunking the Myth

There is no scientific evidence to support the claim that waxing causes hair to grow back thicker and darker. In fact, numerous studies have shown that waxing has no effect on hair thickness or color.

One study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology followed a group of women who underwent waxing treatments for several months. The researchers found no significant differences in hair thickness or color between the waxed and non-waxed areas.

Waxing Study

Another study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science found that while waxing may cause temporary irritation and redness, it does not lead to permanent changes in hair growth patterns or characteristics.

What to Expect from Hair Regrowth After Waxing

After waxing, you can expect your hair to grow back at its natural rate and with its natural thickness and color. However, you may notice some differences in the regrowth pattern:

1. Finer, softer hair

Over time, repeated waxing can lead to finer, softer hair regrowth as the follicles become less stimulated.

2. Slower regrowth

Waxing can disrupt the hair growth cycle, leading to slower regrowth between treatments.

3. Reduced ingrown hairs

Waxing can help prevent ingrown hairs by removing hair from the root and exfoliating the skin.


In conclusion, the myth that waxing causes hair to grow back thicker and darker is just that - a myth. There is no scientific evidence to support this claim, and numerous studies have shown that waxing has no effect on hair thickness or color.

While waxing may lead to some changes in hair regrowth patterns, such as finer, softer hair and slower regrowth, these changes are temporary and do not represent a permanent alteration to the hair follicle or its characteristics.

If you're considering waxing as a hair removal method, don't let this myth hold you back. Waxing can be an effective, long-lasting, and even beneficial way to remove unwanted hair, with no risk of thicker or darker regrowth. As always, it's important to choose a licensed and experienced professional for your waxing treatments to ensure the best possible results and minimize any potential risks or side effects.

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