What is our hair made of?
According to About.com
Hair is much more complicated than it appears. It has two separate structures, the hair follicle in the skin and the hair shaft that we can see. One of the main functions of hair is to act as a sensetive touch receptor.
The hair follicle:
This is a stocking like structure that contains several layers with different jobs. At the base of the hair follicle is a projection formed like a sticky finger in the bottom of a stocking and pushes it in a small amount. The projection is called a Papilla( c’mon everyone let’s say this together P-A-P-I-L-L-L-A) and it contains capillaries, or tiny blood vessels, that feed the cell. The living part of the hair is the is the bottom part and the only part that is fed by the capillaries.
The hair follicle is surrounded by two sheaths – the inner and the outer. These sheaths protect and mold the growing hair shaft and ends below the opening of the sebaceous gland. The outer sheath continues all the way up the the gland.
The sebaceous gland is important because it provides sebum, which is a natural conditioner . More sebum produces after puberty. The sebum production decreases in women through their lives . This decrease also happens in men, but not as much as in women.
The hair shaft:
The hair shaft is made up of dead, hard protein called keratin in three layers. The inner layer is called the Medulla and may not be present. The next layer is the cortex, the cortex makes up most of the hair shaft. The outer layer is the cuticle. The cuticle is formed by tightly packed scales in an overlapping structure similar to roof shingles.
Most hair conditioning products attempt to affect the cuticle, which is the outer most layer that we can see. So get to know what your hair is made of so that you know what each product can do for you and your kinks. Take care of your kinky hair from the inside out along with the outside to maximize kinky hair health and shine.