Can we catch the coronavirus from hair?

Coronavirus in hair

The coronavirus is transmitted mostly through close contact with a sick person via droplets projected when speaking, sneezing or coughing. But contact with unwashed hands or surfaces soiled by those droplets is also a risk factor of contamination. But what about other parts of the body? What about our hair? Could one catch the coronavirus from contaminated hair?

According to experts, any virus can cling to hair, so technically it is possible to get infected from your hair. However, it is unlikely that just a few strands can make you sick just from fine droplets. Indeed, the coronavirus weakens very quickly once it is out of the body.

According to a French doctor Gérald Kierzek, there is no need to panic: “Viruses do not live on their own, they develop within a living host. This means that they must pass from a sick or asymptomatic person, but in any case infected, to another person. When they are in an inert environment the risks of contamination are very low. ”

In addition, your hair is regularly coated with a layer of oil by your scalp. The latter keeps germs from clinging to your mane and has an “antimicrobial effect” which tends to kill germs fairly quickly. The same goes for facial hair: no worries about your beard, your eyebrows or your mustache. It would indeed require large quantities of the virus for inert surfaces like our hair to be vectors of transmission.

However, if you have a habit of chewing the ends of your hair — some people surprisingly do — you could theoretically catch the virus. For that, you would have to put in your mouth the infected strand that has been infected by an outside agent. It would be really bad luck, but, as a precaution and for general hygiene, avoid doing it. In general, avoid touching your hair until you can wash it properly.

In conclusion: There is therefore no need to wash our hair every day: “There is neither the quantity nor the conditions sufficient for the virus to be viable” on our hair.