Sunday, 11 September 2011

Hair weight and headaches

I think everyone with over BSL hair have heard comments on hair weight and headaches:  
“Wow, your hair must be so heavy!”
“Don’t you get headaches with all that hair?”
Uhm, no. But thanks for not being able to keep such an unintelligent comment inside your head?

The truth is that hair isn’t heavy at all. An average inch of hair weighs about 50 µg. Calculating from those numbers and actually attempting to weigh my hair (That isn’t easy to get accurate!) lands my thick, knee length hair at around 250 gram. That’s not a whole lot, is it?
The weight of hair itself doesn’t cause headaches.

What actually causes hair-headaches are:
  • Unevenly distributed weight from an updo where a lot of weight is pulling on a few hairs
  • Not packing the updo close to the head. Its basically torque like we know from physics and mechanics
But today after my cassia-treatment I can feel it. Not a headache as such, but more feeling… Irritated and heavy in the head.
Of course this is after first 1 hour 15 minutes of cassia and then 3½ hour of V05!
So how much weight do I have piled on my head?

Water weight: I’m not sure how much the moisture inside my hair adds to the weight. Double it? Less? More? The only way to know would have been if I weighed it before adding the conditioner. I will set it to just 100 grams extra (Equals having absorbed just 1 dl of water, which I doubt it set too high)
Conditioner: 200 ml = At least 200 gram
Cling wrap and metal foil = Are less than my digital scale can register, so 5 gram?
Heatpack = 85 gram
3 warm hats = 240 gram

So that ads up to 630 grams (!) extra weight left piled up on my skull for 4 hours and 45 minutes.
As I wrote already: I don’t have a headache, but my head doesn’t feel entirely happy either.

When it takes so much to actually cause a headache, why do people cling to the headache-argument against long hair? 


  1. I have never had headaches from long hair either, but my scalp gets tender/sore if I have a tight french braid or any tight style in for a period of time.

    I think most people ask me how long it takes me to wash it. The five minute answer makes people's jaw drop. :) However, I think when you get past hip length, long hair IS work to keep it looking nice.

  2. I've never had headaches from long hair. When we were teenagers, one of my cousins had headaches that her mother was convinced were caused by her hair being longer. Not that her mom was against the long hair, she was all for it. They might have been political ideas as the stepmother had cut my cousins hair super short... I am envious of knee length. :)

  3. My hair doesn't give me a headache, I think. But if I already have one, taking down an updo often redistributes the hair's weight in a way that makes my head ache a little less.

    Also, the first time I ever did an updo (when I was 12?) I did get a neck ache after a few hours because I'd never had it up like that before.

    It's definitely an issue of weight distribution, like you said, not one of sheer heaviness.

  4. I was just wondering, where do you get the V05? I have heard good things about this for COing. I am from Norway and have not found it anywhere.

    Oh, and your blog is really good!

  5. To Anonymous: I found it at Willy’s here in Sweden and a few times at Rema1000 in Denmark as one of those random items they have. No clue where to find it in Norway though, but thank you very much:)