No, your hair does not continue to grow after you die. Much like your nails growing after you die, it looks like your hair continues to grow because your skin begins drying out and shrinking. This is what gives the illusion of your hair continuing to grow after you die.
When you’re healthy (alive that is), your hair grows about half an inch per month, or about 6 inches per year. Stem cells called “keratinocytes” (click here to learn about them) rapidly multiply, then die and turn into keratin hair strands that grow out of the hair follicles located beneath the outer layer of your skin.
By the time you can actually see a hair, it has already been growing beneath the skin for some time. It continues to grow throughout the “anagen“ phase of the hair growth cycle. But this does change depending on which part of your body we’re talking about.
The hair on your head will grow for several years (and depending on your genetics can grow to several feet long), but the follicles across the rest of your body grow hair for only a couple weeks or months at a time. That’s why the hair on your head is much longer than the hair on your arms.
But whether we’re talking about the hair on your head or the hair on your arms, all of your hair follicles develop during your fetal life. So by the time you’re born, you have all of the hair follicles you will ever have, and even though your hair strands are made of dead keratin cells, your hair does not continue to grow when you die.
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