What Is the Rarest Hair Color?

Author: Staff Writers


Red is the rarest natural hair color in the world.

More Info: The reason for the rarity is related to chromosome 16. Redheads have two copies of a recessive gene which causes a change in a protein named MC1R. It is rare for a person to have two copies of a recessive gene which causes red hair. 1% - 2% of the entire population have red hair.

Redhead Studies

According to research published in the Journal Anesthesiology,  doctors from the Outcomes Research™ Institute and Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine, University of Louisville concluded that redheads are more sensitive to thermal pain and more resistant to anesthesia.

Redhead Historical Facts

According to Marion Roach, author of The Roots of Desire: The Myth, Meaning, and Sexual Power of Red Hair, strong perceptions, both positive and negative, have surrounded redheads for centuries.  As an example, in Greek mythology redheads transform into vampires after they die; during the Inquisition redheads were burned as witches; and a Corsican proverb instructs you to spit after you pass one.

Famous Redheads 

Redheads make us laugh with such notable comedians as Lucille Ball, Carol Burnet, Red Skelton and Conan O'Brien. Redheads have ruled their world. Queen Elizabeth I of England had red hair and King David of the Bible was purported to have red hair. Mary Magdalene and Achilles are also depicted having red hair.


Works Cited

Journal-Nature Genetics
Variants of the melanocyte−stimulating hormone receptor gene are associated with red hair and fair skin in humans
11 (1995): 328 - 330 . Print.

Roach, Marion
The Roots of Desire: The Myth, Meaning, and Sexual Power of Red Hair
New York: Bloomsbury :, 2006. Print

"Increased Sensitivity to Thermal Pain and Reduced Subcutaneous Lidocaine Efficacy in Redheads."
102.3 (2005): 509-514. Print.

Expert Opinion 

Quote:   "Once in his life, every man is entitled to fall madly in love with a gorgeous redhead."

Source: Lucille Ball

Quote:   "You can sleep with a blonde, you can sleep with a brunette, but you'll never get any sleep with a redhead!"

Source: Jamie Luner, Actress

Quote:   "I love being a redhead. It's a rare thing, so I think there's a bond between redheads."

Source: Laura Prepon, Actress

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"What Is the Rarest Hair Color?." Sophisticated Edge. N.p., n.d. Web. . <http://www.sophisticatededge.com/what-is-the-rarest-hair-color.html>.  

The information on this Web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to treat or diagnose any health problems or illnesses without consulting a physician. It is not meant to take the place of health care or services you may need. Please consult a physician with any questions you may have regarding your health.

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