Why Do We Have Armpit Hair and Should It Be Removed?
Certain parts of the human body, like the armpits and private areas, possess dense hair growth, contrasting with areas like the head that have minimal hair growth.
1. The Science Behind Armpit HairResearchers from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine have identified a substance called Dickkopf 2 (DKK2), found in embryonic body tissues, which inhibits hair growth. The development of hair follicles in our body relies on the WNT signaling pathway. This signal promotes energy conversion into hair growth. When inhibitors like DKK2 are removed, follicles can grow robustly, explaining why humans lack hair on wrists and legs unlike many other mammals.
Post-birth, human hair follicles grow but lack self-regeneration capabilities, hindering recovery from severe burns or deep wounds.
2. Functions of Human Body HairHuman evolution led to the loss of most body hair, necessitating clothing for warmth. However, remaining body hair—such as in the nose, eyebrows, armpits, arms, and legs—serves various purposes. It aids in sweat evaporation, protects against dust and rain, and potentially attracts mates.
Thicker hair in men, like chest and armpit hair, is influenced by androgen hormones. It's believed that ample body hair may have acted as sun protection for the head.
Additionally, body hair could play a role in attracting mates based on preferences for length, color, position, or scent emissions.
However, excessive armpit hair can sometimes lead to unpleasant odors, causing discomfort.
3. Should Armpit Hair Be Removed?
Many individuals, especially women, desire to remove armpit hair due to itching, discomfort, or aesthetic reasons.
Plucking armpit hair with tweezers is a common method, but it's temporary and can stimulate quicker, coarser regrowth. It may also darken the skin, risk infection, and generate an unpleasant odor.
Razor use is more convenient but results in faster, thicker regrowth.
Modern hair removal techniques offer better solutions. Natural products like turmeric starch, fresh milk, lemon, and honey might inhibit hair growth.
Ultimately, the decision to remove armpit hair depends on personal choice and comfort. Moderation and understanding the impact of different methods on hair growth and skin health are crucial.