Get Rid of a Cowlick

Alexander Skarsgard hair with a cowlick
Alexander Skarsgard - Photo: Taniavolobueva/Shutterstock
Q: Is there any way to get rid of a collick in your hair?
A: The term is actually ‘cowlick’ and is a result of the particular growth pattern of the hair. Lindsay Lohan, Nick Jonas and Alexander Skarsgard are celebrities who have a cowlick.
Hairs rarely emerge from the follicle at a specific angle or in a particular direction. Some people’s hair grows more vertical, while others’ hair may grow at an angle close to the scalp. And then there are those individuals who have specific areas of the hair that grow in a particular direction.
If the hair grows in an outwardly spiraling pattern, it is referred to as a ‘whorl’. When a section of hairs all grow in the same direction and at the same angle it is called a ‘hair stream’. Then there are those individuals who have sections of their hair that grow at odd angles or in dramatically different angles to the rest of the hair; these are known as ‘cowlicks’.
Lindsay Lohan's cowlick
Lindsay Lohan - Photo: Everett Collection/Shutterstock
Unfortunately, there is no way to permanently remove a cowlick in your hair. They are formed because the hair grows in a specific pattern, or the follicles are unusually shaped. In some cases, children with cowlicks can see their cowlicks go away as they mature and their hair follicles alter in shape. Other cases have seen cowlicks form during adolescence or after injury to the scalp.
You can, however, learn to "manage" a cowlick, and a well-trained stylist knows how to compensate for different growth patterns when cutting the hair and/or selecting a style. Depending on the texture and thickness of the hair, many styling products can help to manage a cowlick as well.
Finally, in many cases, an individual opts to have their hair permed or straightened in order to sufficiently alter the wave pattern of the hair to compensate for the cowlick. This only lasts until the hair begins to grow out and the new growth conforms to the pattern set by the follicles, but is generally very useful in more extreme cases of cowlicks.
See also:
How do you wrap a perm for a cowlick?
How to cut a fringe when you have to deal with a cowlick
Is there any help for cow licks?
What causes cowlicks and why is my hair getting worse as I age?