Would Pulling Out 1 White Hair Lead to 3 New White Hair?


Last Updated on 2023-05-14 , 12:21 pm

One of the worst things that we could ever hear from our friends, parents or partner would be this: “Eh, you have white hair liao ah?”

That’s because we all know the myth, right?

We’ve always been told by our parents that whatever you do, you must never, ever pluck out the white hair or you’ll have three white hairs on your head in the future.

And we always took it for truth, but if you were to ask us the mechanics about it, we’d most probably stop for a moment, then say because my mom says so.

Allow us to dispel this myth for you.

Of course, we’re not going to tell you if you should pluck out your white hair.


Instead, we’re going to tell you what’s going to happen when you pluck out that white hair of yours and let you make your own decision.

The mechanics of white hair

The first question is this: Why do we get white hair? The reason why that particular strand of hair can turn white is because of the hair follicle its attached to.

Somehow, malonogenesis, which is the pigmentation process done by the hair follicle when it produces the hair, gets wonky and cause the hair that grows out to be white.

So should you pluck out that white hair?

According to cosmetic scientist Randy Schueller, there’s no harm in plucking out that strand of white hair.

At least not in the way we thought.

Plucking out that white strand of hair will not cause three white hairs to appear on your head, nor will it spread and infect its neighbouring hair follicles, causing them to spout out white hairs as well.

Instead, what happens is a new strand of hair will grow out of your hair follicles. If you’re lucky, the hair will be darker in color because the colour of the new hair that grows out of the same hair follicle varies.  Or like us Singaporeans would say, bo heng suay.

So, I should pluck out the white hairs until I get a dark one?

I mean, that’s how Singaporeans work, right? If it fails, try again until you get a satisfactory result, right?


If you pull too much hair from the same hair follicle, you’re going to damage it and cause it to stop producing hair.

So if you’ve destroyed enough hair follicles, you’ll find that your white-haired woes have gone, only to be replaced by the problem of balding.

Featured Image: Supaleka_P / Shutterstock.com

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