Posted by Lewis on May 05, 2005
In Reply to: White overnight posted by Smokey Stover on May 05, 2005
: : : I've heard a phrase something like, "Her hair turned white overnight" as a by-product of an extreme shock. Are there actual instances of this? I didn't think that was scientifically possible. Where did that phrase or idea come from? Thanks for any info!
: : Here's what I read somewhere. A person's hair doesn't turn white. But stress can cause rapid hair loss and "reveal" white hair that was already white.
: ESC meant, of course, that hair does not turn white overnight. It obviously DOES turn white in the course of aging. As for the rest of what she says, that's certainly the theory of those who ought to know. SS
Hair is already dead and is a particular colour when it is extruded - thus hair cannot naturally shed its colour once it is visible. whether the phrase originated as along the lines of 'virtually overnight' and then was exaggerated to 'literally overnight' I don't know - but I very much doubt that the colour component can change is such a short time without intervention.