No! Facial hair refers to the hair of the face, grown usually on the chin, cheeks, and upper lip area. Hence it represents beard, mustache, and sideburns – not the eyebrows and eyelashes. Facial hair is the secondary sex characteristic of a male. Females also tend to develop facial hair, especially after menopause.
Eyebrows and eyelashes are some of the main features of our face. There are biological reasons for us having hair around and above the eyes.
Eyelashes are considered the body’s shortest hair with the longest life. Healthy lashes are not supposed to go grey, and they grow around the border of the eyelid. The upper eyelids of humans have almost 90 to 100 lashes, while the lower eyelids have about 70 to 100 lashes. Humans shed almost 1 to 4 lashes each day.
Functional Benefits of Eyelashes
- Eyelashes are human antennas that act as sensors for insects or air particles and thus cause a protective or reflexive blink.
- They add beauty to our facial features.
- A 2015 study concluded that eyelashes prevent tear evaporation and keep the eyes lubricated. In this way, they act as air filters for the eye.
- They act as dust-catchers – eyelashes preserve the eyes from the debris that may lead to infections or injuries.
Several health conditions may be caused by unhealthy eyelashes, including blepharitis, trichiasis, distichiasis, and styes.
Eyebrows are the curved strip of delicate hair above the eye socket. According to research, eyebrows regrow in around 4 to 6 months.
Functional Benefits of Eyebrows
- Eyebrows are there to channel the undesired moisture, sweat, and raindrops away from the eye to retain clear vision. The shape and direction of the eyebrows force the moisture to flow sideways.
- Eyebrows are meant to block the light and dust particles, hence avoid its falling within the eyes.
- Experts believe that human communication and expression are well expressed by the eyebrow movement.
- Research by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) confirmed that eyebrows are a key feature in a person’s identity, even more than the eyes.
Like every other hair of the body, eyelashes and eyebrows follow a life cycle, comprising three phases. However, these phases are not synchronized. Some hair may stay in one phase more than the other. This is why we don’t shed our hair altogether.
Following are the three phases:
1. Anagen – The Growth Phase
This one is the actively growing phase of hair, which normally lasts for 30 to 45 days. This is the phase where different cosmetic products can help your lashes and brows to reach their maximum potential. Hair length depends on the duration of the anagen phase.
2. Catagen – The Transition Phase
After reaching their maximum length, eyebrows and eyelashes stop growing because of the shrinking of hair follicles. This lasts for around 2 to 3 weeks. If you pluck hair during this phase, it won’t regrow until the duration of this stage is over.
3. Telogen – The Resting Phase
This stage lasts for 100 days and is the longest phase, technically. In this phase, the lashes and brows will end up shedding. After that, it takes about 4 to 8 weeks before new hair grows.
There are several medical reasons that cause eyelashes and eyebrows to fall off.
Some of which are:
- Hormonal imbalance
- Long Term illness
- Cancer chemotherapy
Eyelashes and eyebrows are on there for a reason, and that’s not just cosmetics. Although these two consist of hair, they are not considered facial hair. So, if someone comes to you and says that eyelashes and eyebrows are facial hair, share this blog with them.