Devaude’s Journal

In-character Subject: Self-Analysis: Hair
Submitted: 2007-3-21 04.21

Not only my RSI has white hair. In the real my hair is white as well.
Gray hair is nothing special, even for a man in my age. I don’t know my exact age, but I must be around 30.
Getting gray hair is a normal aging process, and can start in your teens. Normally most people start becoming gray
at an age of 35. The odd thing is, every single hair on my body is white!

To the basics: The root of every strand of hair is surrounded by a hair follicle (=a tube of tissue under the skin). Each hair follicle contains a certain number of pigment cells. These pigment cells continuously produce a chemical called melanin that gives the growing shaft of hair its color of brown, blonde, red, and anything in between. As we get older, the pigment cells in our hair follicles gradually die. When there are fewer pigment cells in a hair follicle, that strand of hair will no longer contain as much melanin and will become a more transparent color – like gray – as it grows. As people continue to get older, fewer pigment cells will be around to produce melanin.

Gray hair, then, is simply hair with less melanin, and white hair has no melanin at all.
Melanin is also responsible for the skin tone. That means, if my body is unable to produce melanin at all, I must be an albino. That’s not the case, because my skin tone is more like chocolate than white. Ergo it cannot be an genetic defect.
It’s very unlikely that the natural aging process turned every hair on body white, because it only reduces the melanin but doesn’t stop the production.

Some people think that a big shock or trauma can turn a person’s hair white. But there is no scientific proof for this.
But currently it is the most reasonable explanation I can think of…


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