This is why your hair turns grey (but there’s new research that’s promising to prevent it)

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  • (AKA Yippee!)

    First off, let’s just bust a few myths shall we? Stress doesn’t make you go grey and plucking one grey hair won’t result in more.

    What will make you go grey is a gene known as IRF4 (middle finger to that one!)

    This gene controls hair colour by regulating the production and storage of melanin – the pigment that decides hair, skin, and eye colour. So when it decides to not bless a strand of your hair with melanin, it turns grey.

    But don’t despair, there is hope on the horizon.

    A group of UK researchers have been developing an effective treatment for hair. Unlike traditional methods that simply colour grey hair, this new method treats the problem by getting down to the roots.

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    ‘For generations, numerous remedies have been concocted to hide grey hair,’ said Dr. Gerald Weissmann, editor-in-chief of The Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, which published the new study, ‘but now, for the first time, an actual treatment that gets to the root of the problem has been developed.’

    According to the researchers, grey hair is triggered by the accumulation of hydrogen peroxide, which generates harmful oxidative stress, in the roots of hair follicles – a process also said to occur in cases of vitiligo (a long-term condition that causes pale, white patches to develop on the skin due to the lack of melanin).

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