back to article Researchers find evidence that stress does turn your hair grey, and it can be reversed – you just need a holiday

Researchers have found that stress does indeed turn your hair grey, and that taking a break from all your worries sure would help a lot, even reversing the process – a discovery with potential ramifications for our understanding of the ageing process. "Just as the rings in a tree trunk hold information about past decades in …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's true!

    I retired, bought a cottage in the country and endured 3 years of building work - and then went into lockdown. Ah! peace at last... and over the last year my faded mousey- going -grey hair has steadily got browner and the grey is almost gone: a bit of a miracle. It's exciting getting up in the morning and peering into the mirror - and I am over 70, (hence the anonymous post). Go figure.

    1. Keven E

      Re: It's true!

      I read "peeing into the mirror"...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: It's true!

        I think I need ten years off... that should fix the problem :-)

        More seriously I've only ever seen one person go grey after major surgery and then get their colour back... and for her it happened more than once. (no, not due to colour from a bottle!)

  2. macjules

    Its not the colour that's the problem

    Did the stress test also cover hair falling out?

    1. tfewster

      Re: Its not the colour that's the problem

      Maybe the future Picard will still have that problem. That IS why you used that icon, isn't it?

      1. EricB123 Bronze badge

        Re: Its not the colour that's the problem

        I was watching a Star Trek with Picard long ago, and my wife commented "You'd think by the year 20 gazillion they'd find a cure for male baldness". Progress takes time I guess.

        1. MacroRodent

          Re: Its not the colour that's the problem

          More likely Picard just likes it that way. After all, even today there are men who keep their heads shawed bald.

        2. Screepy

          Re: Its not the colour that's the problem

          That's because baldness isn't really in illness and doesn't need curing.

          Sadly, it has been monetised by big corp so we think it needs curing = huge piles of money for them.

        3. MyffyW Silver badge

          Re: Its not the colour that's the problem

          Maybe by the 23rd century people had moved on from the narcistic beauty industry?

  3. My other car WAS an IAV Stryker

    A draft one ---> for the author

    For using the line "taking a break from all your worries sure would help a lot", at a place where everyone knows their name.

  4. xyz Silver badge

    I thought grey was compulsory...

    For developers. Sys Admins always go bald and err... Fat. That's how you can tell the 2 sides apart.

    1. Ragarath

      Re: I thought grey was compulsory...

      What happens in Dev-ops? Do we have a third option, an amalgamation of the two or a cancelling out?

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ah, I'll try that argument and see if my manager agrees that I need a few months off - according to my hair I need it !

  6. Claptrap314 Silver badge


    This eighteen-month "holiday" hasn't helped my hair much. I think I could do with some of the stress of having a job again.

  7. T. F. M. Reader Silver badge

    I'll go on vacation...

    ... and will wait till a confirmation study that will use a decent sample size and something other than self-assessment of past stress. That will be the appropriate time to get back to the office and review the paper.

    "There was one individual who went on vacation ..." just doesn't cut it.

    1. ThatOne Silver badge

      Re: I'll go on vacation...

      ... especially if only "five hairs on that person's head reverted back to dark"...

      1. Warm Braw

        Re: I'll go on vacation...

        It's encouraging news for Homer Simpson, though.

  8. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge

    I Confess

    It's been four months since my last use of Just For Men.

    Some of my hair is white, others are grey & some still maintains a semblance of its normal (Albeit faded colour).

    Some of which I can attribute to a general lessening of stress in my personal life, compared to when I was applying the tube every four weeks last year.

    Doesn't stop me loosing the stuff (Icon (Still a longish way off I hope)) & despite the shedding I am in desperate need of a proper haircut as I am modelling the Albert Einstein look (Lock down keeps closing the places, just as I am ready to go in).

  9. wolfetone Silver badge

    I found this out the hard way. When my Dad died I was 24 and not at all grey. Then after he died I got a grey patch about the size of a £2 coin on the side of my head.

    Nothing happened then until this year when the wife says she's expecting our first born. That wasn't the stressful part, it's the full on nagging I've had since demanding everything be right. Who knew a new born baby could be so fussy over the colour of carpet on the stairs?

    Now my whole head is dotted with greys.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Tell her that the carpet needs to be gone unless it matches the curtains

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    How to stop losing your hair?

    Take a large envelope...

  11. chivo243 Silver badge

    Runs in the family

    Rumor has it mom was dying her hair in her 20s, I started going grey in my late 30s. Now, well just call me the Silver Fox...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They've only just discovered this? Really?!

    I first started getting some grey in my hair in my thirties, due to huge and prolonged stress. The grey would start at the base of affected hairs, but if ihad a happier few months, the same hairs reverted to the usual brown. The difference was perfectly visible to the unaided eye. I'm in my sixties now, and overall there's a lot more grey in my hair generally, but it is still markedly affected by whether I am under great stress or not. And anecdotally, I've known others experience similar. I find it hard to credit that this hasnt been known to science for a great many years. The only interesting part t me is that they can detect variatios in colour due to less extreme stress of lack thereof.

  13. werdsmith Silver badge

    My hair has stayed resolutely and incongruously dark brown. Considering some grey highlights so make it match the rest of me.

    1. cjp

      My hair has also stayed brown. Sadly though, it has not manged to stay on my head.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Other stories you might like