Smoking and Hair Growth

Scissors cutting a cigarette in half
Q: Is smoking bad for your hair? I know that it will make my hair smell bad, but is it bad in terms of damage, less hair growth or hair loss?
A: Yes. Because smoking has systemic effects on the human body, affecting greatly the cardio-vascular system.
Especially cigarette-smoking can affect the blood flow and oxygen supply of the dermal papilla where the new cells of the hair are formed. Such decrease in blood-oxygen supply can result in slower cell division and poor cell development.
It should also be noted that smoking affects hair growth and hair loss in many ways: from creating an imbalance in the cellular chemistry in tissue development, to causing inflammation in the follicles and fibrosis of the follicle tissues. It also causes enzymatic imbalances that can contribute to disruption of the hair growth cycles and hair loss in both men and women.
Let's also not forget the demonstrated links between smoking and prematurely graying hair.
Many health education groups are starting to focus on the damage caused to the hair, its growth cycles and the contributing factors to hair loss in their campaigns to encourage people to avoid and stop smoking.
Photo: Alfa Photostudio/Shutterstock
See also:
How fast does hair grow?
What is hair made of and how does it grow?
The hair growth cycles
Hair damage