Perm In A Pill: Scientists Discover The Curly-Hair Gene

Are you a curly girl who's always wanted straight strands? A flat-haired dreamer who longs for ringlets? When it comes to hair, it's said that you always want what you don't have. However, a new finding by Australian scientists could lead to letting you switch your hair texture by popping a pill.

It sounds like science fiction, but Nick Martin of the Queensland Institute of Medical Research tells the UK's Daily Mail: "Potentially, we can now develop new treatments to make hair curlier or straighter, rather than treating the hair directly." How? It's due to the discovery of the gene that predicts whether a person will have curly or straight hair.

Already known to influence follicle development, the trichohyalin gene has now been found to determine the curliness of its host's hair. In addition to predicting what a baby's hair texture will be and helping forensic specialists establish if a perp has a wavy mane, this discovery could mean a future free of flattening and curling irons, chemical straightening treatments and perms.

How far in future? Martin says, "I will be discussing this with a major cosmetic company in Paris in January."

Would you take a pill to change the texture of your hair? Tell us why or why not by leaving a comment below.


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  • Anonymous

    This is clearly a personal choice. As long as its *safe *optional *permanent *affordable There's no reason to not develop this next generation tool for equality and self expression. As far as money goes, a permanent solution such as this is less degrading than constant hours risking burns of a hot iron, damage from chemicals, time spent inside getting weaves, replacements costs and ect. No one should be trying to stop this option giving god-send.

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  • Adrian

    As long as it's safe and wouldn't make my hair fall out, i'm all for it.

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  • Anonymous

    Wow...I'm more shocked at these sad self-degrading comments moreso than this idea of a 'hair pill'. God didn't make any mistakes when he made us...embrace. This society has ruined us smh. If u don't love who u are then who will? And did anybody mention the side effects that may come with it.This is exactly what 'they' want us to do, keep hating ourselves so they can make another dollar..

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  • DiappointedYouth

    The responses to this post are the most self-hating and degrading comments that I've been subjected to in a long time. Having kinky curly hair is not a bad thing and its not hard to manage. What's hard to manage is your own self worth associated with the texture because you were born into a society that brain washes you into thinking that you are unbeautiful in your natural state. I feel sorry for all of those who are convinced that they need to go through the arduous task of relaxers and flat iron/hot comb treatments. I shudder to think the repercussions and negative impact this pill will have on the self worth of those who become addicted to it...

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  • spicykinks

    There's an awful lot of self-hate on this board. Having said that, common sense would tell anyone that anything that alters your genes, will alter the rest of you in some shape form or fashion and the consequences tend to outweigh the benefits as is the case with most synthetic drugs. I'll pass on this. I'm quite happy with my hairitage!

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  • Sunshine

    Now ask what are the side effects......

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  • Anonymous

    I think Jackie O was taking a drug to keep gray out. She is no longer alive. That has been years ago. Scientist are making headway on so many things. Now finding out "we all have blue eyes" and knowing that brown is the only real color of eyes and flakes of brown pigment make our eyes have different shades of brown. I am open, because this discovery is being opened just like contact lenses were discovered and hair relaxers were discovered. Our world is evolving and new discoveries are coming out and the fact taking a pill to cause the hair to straighten that is hugh. I know a phamacist commented and that is a wise decision to wait. But I don't think we should wait and see. I think the fact that these discoveries are being unleased they are being allowed to be discovered. The ones fixed on race purity are saying no. But that is one reason for their negative comments, they want to be able to tell the difference, but why?. So yes, I would love to take a pill. We take birth control pills, and weight control drugs, etc. I never took those drugs, because I couldn't, but others could.But now their maybe some I can take. But they are widely used. There so many drugs. I would take the hair straightener pill, because my Dad had curly hair and a definient curl in his hair. My hair is soft and really my hair kinky when dry. I would like have straight or larger curls. My sister loves her hair and she sprays it and pampers her kinky hair. I wear a wig with the curly look I like.

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  • Nila

    The moment they market the pill I will one of it's pioneering customers!!!

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  • MissCurly

    I used to have curly, crazy, and beautiful hair. BUT now it's gone straight. I would love to have my old hair back.

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  • Liza

    I would love for this pill to come out now.. If we all could do a petition for this pill to come out faster.. I'm not happy with this nappy kuntA -kin- teaee hair. I'm. Sooooooooooooooooooooo unhappy with my hair. Lets pray it comes out soon

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  • LL

    I hate having kinky hair. Some women like it but I'm not one of them. If you need test clinics I would be more than happy to be one. I would love straight hair vs. kinky hair.

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  • cheryl12

    I would love a pill to alter the texture of my hair. I hate, hate, hate having to put relaxers on my head. And I hate how difficult it is to manage my natural hair. I am a low maintenance person but having kinky hair makes you look terrible unless you are a very beautiful woman. When a pill or injection comes out, I'm getting it because I am just a wash and wear girl as it is-besides the relaxer. I wish I never had to put that stuff on my head again. The gray I can live with. Even though I'd like to eliminate that too. But the kinks are real self esteem busters. Straight hair is wonderful. All you have to do is brush it and go. Not manipulate it by pulling and tugging and combing and brushing over, and over. I should be glad that my hair grows so quickly because African Americans are always talking about the difficulty of growing their hair. I've never had that problem. I cut my hair off and in no time it is back. The bad thing about it is that it comes out kinky. Not pretty like with chemicals. So yes, when there's an internal treatment to fix this hair I will RUN to where it's at. Thank you scientists!

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  • curlsrock

    I know so many women who would love this. Especially to have thick curly hair! Deep down, every girl values curly hair and most guys love it when they actually get the chance to touch it and be around it more. Curly hair gives character! Get this pill out ASAP!!!

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  • ssahil verma

    from where i can get this pill..? and how much cost required for this pill..?

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  • Anonymous

    Are you kidding? Of course, I would love to change the texture of my hair to get some beautiful, grow to my waist thick loose curly hair!!! I'd be willing to pay up to $10,000 for this, if research demonstrated that there were no physiological side effects. I am tired of perming my hair to get it straight. And even with straight hair, I still have to run and hide from the rain. So, please, get to working on this and providing a safe treatment for consumers ASAP.

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  • Penny

    yes i would!!!!!!!!

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  • KIA

    I'M AFRICAN AMERICAN SO MY HAIR IS SUPER KINKY AND FRIZZY NATURALLY. CURLY WOULD BE AN UNDERSTATEMENT, WAVY WOULD BE A DREAM COME TRUE. SUPER KINKY AND FRIZZY TEXTURE MAKES IT DIFFICULT TO STYLE IN IT'S NATURAL STATE EVEN PAINFUL BECAUSE OF THE EXTREME TANGLES. I GET CHEMICAL RELAXERS EVERY 6-7 WEEKS TO STRAIGTEN MY HAIR WHICH THEN MAKES MY HAIR STRAIGHT BUT EXTREMELY FRAGILE AND BRITTLE. NOT TO MENTION THE CHEMICAL RELAXERS ALMOST ALWAYS ENDS UP ON MY SCALP AND BURNS MY SCALP LEAVING WOUNDS WHICH DEVELOPE SCABS AS MY SCALP ATTEMPTS TO HEAL. I COULD JUST PRESS MY HAIR WITH A SUPER HOT PRESSING COMB WHICH DOES LESS DAMAGE TO THE HAIR AND LEAVES IT SHINIER WITH MORE BODY BUT THAT ONLY LAST 2 WEEKS OR UNTIL MY HAIR GETS WET. AND I'M PRAYING AND WINCING THE WHOLE TURTUROUS TIME HOPING THAT THE STYLIST DOESNT GET THAT HOT COMB TO CLOSE TO MY SCALP. UNFORTUNATELY, PRESSING ALWAYS GETS ME BURNED. SO YES, I WOULD DIFFINITELY BE INTERESTED IN A TREATMENT THAT WOULD MAKE MY NATURAL HAIR STRAIGHTER WITHOUT TORTURING ME IN THE PROCESS.

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  • anonymous

    YES. I've wanted straight hair my entire life. I use a flat-iron a couple times a weak, and burn my hair just to get the look. If I was given the opportunity to take a pill and BAM, straight thin hair? Hell yeah I'd take it.

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  • mia

    Absolutely without question. Women spend a fortune trying to get the perfect hair look. Now if only we can find the gene that determines cellulite-free thighs and buttocks for women that would be even hotter!

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  • Sandi

    I would take a pill with side effects if the end result would be more hair, thicker hair, curly hair or just plain over all BETTER hair. When the pill gets invented for hair loss or thinning hair....It will make TRILLIONS OF DOLLARS!!!!

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  • Heather

    What are you people talking about hormones? This article never mentioned hormones. Not once. Learn to read for clarity AND comprehension. Maybe you need a pill for that. And speaking of hormones, millions of women taking them everyday. They are called birth control pills. If I could take a pill for cute curly hair... Yes, I would.

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  • anonymous

    In. A. Heartbeat.

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  • Dena

    Absolutely Yes!! IF there are no major side effects and IF it doesn't require a lifelong costly prescription; then absolutely yes I would love to relax my tight curls to a less curly texture. And I'd take a supplement to get rid of the grey and prevent hair thinning too!

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  • bja

    The first person started talking about a hormone and everyone jumped on that bandwagon. There are no hormones discussed. They are talking about gene therapy. Big difference. It would be interesting to see whether that gene would change other things beside curly or straight. Would it too change texture or color? Could it be they have found what changes your hair as you age? Give back that beautiful shine and gloss that seems to disappear after 40? I'm sure with testing in Europe it will eons before the states would approve any type of "pill". Sounds too good to be true.

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  • Mel

    Blossom, conspiracy theorist much?

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  • Anesidora

    As a practising pharmacist for almost a quarter century who specialises in anti-ageing, functional and regenerative medicine, I would definitely want to take a wait and see approach even after looking through the data. When I first started practising, I used to tell my students, both medical and pharmacy, to wait at least two years before prescribing or recommending any new drug. Now I tell them to wait four years to see if the drug will even stay on the market. The relationship between Big Pharma and the FDA used to be, appropriately adversarial; now it's hard to tell who's who these days. Be careful.

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  • Dana

    Assuming this pill carried no serious risks, I'd be thrilled to take a pill to make my hair smooth & straight. I've severely damaged my fine, weak kinky-wavy hair several times attempting to make it look presentable. I'd also take a pill to get rid of gray hair. Once you begin noticing the aging process, having unattractive hair means more than it probably should, but I think it would help those of us who need encouragement at this phase of our lives.

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  • karen

    i am not that unhappy with my hair, but i have always wanted big loose "Gissel" waves, who wound'nt? but, what if the pill made my hair worse! instead of super straight hair i have now , what if the pill gave me crazy frizz instead of nice curls? lets test it out and see, and i agree, if there was a pill to prevent gray hair i think i would try that .

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  • Blossom

    There is no way this would not have systemic effects. This is just a teaser news story being used to raise capital investors. Leave the genome alone.

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  • Joy

    I would love something in a pill form that would change my fine hair into a thick mane with body. I already take Identical Bio- $ormones. The next thing would a pill to wipe out the hair.

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  • brigit

    sounds too good to be true and prob is..sorry

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  • DJ Becker

    Unfortunately, our society places too much emphasis on hair texture. If it's kinky (like mine is) then many people assume that you're either poor or uneducated. Pick up any magazine, including New Beauty and you will rarely if ever see a beauty with an African hair texture,kinky and worn in all it's natural glory. I would be more concerned with the health of my hair than the texture. If I could keep the youthful shine, strength and color of my natural hair, then yes, I would try it after it was on the market for several years.

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  • Bettie

    Would love to find a pill that could not only make hair curly, but would love to find something that would make hair THICK !

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  • anonymous

    I Agree with the first comment that there could be reprecusions and consequenses to taking hormones so after it is tested I would be glad to try it. I have such straight hair that I have always wanted soft medium sized ringlets with out the use of hot rollers which fall out in a matter of minutes after the rollers are removed.

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  • Nancy

    Proven safe? You bet I would. I have had stick straight, baby fine hair my whole life. If there are no health issues with taking a gene that is not in my DNA, it would be nice, since I am aging, to at the very least, look like I have better hair.

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  • Mimi

    I would take a pill to prevent gray hair.

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  • anonymous

    I would be cautious of the side affects and wait sometime after its out in the market. I would take a pill but not to change my curley hair to straight or vice versa but to make my hair healthier and shiny.

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  • RealTalk

    I would have to see the studies and findings for possible side-effects. Hormone inducing pills to alter biological could spell trouble and major lawsuits in the future. I will take the wait-and-see approach and let others be the guinea pig to expose side effects. If all goes well, I'll give it a try (would love to turn my kinky hair straight to lay off the heating devices and perms).

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