What Percentage of the World's Population Has Brown Hair?

Brown hair is the second most popular hair color in the world.
Brown hair is the second most popular hair color in the world.

Hair color refers to the pigment that is found in hair follicles due to two types of melanin, namely pheomelanin and eumelanin. People with dark hair have high amounts of eumelanin while those with lighter colors have higher amounts of pheomelanin. The level of the melanin determines the severity of the color. For example, people with the darkest hair have higher amounts of eumelanin compared to those with simply dark hair. There are two types of eumelanin, namely brown and black. On the other hand, the level of blondeness is determined by the concentration of pheomelanin. The natural hair color that a person is born with can change over time. In addition, one person can have differently colored hair follicles.

The Population of the World With Brown Hair

In the world, almost 20% of the human population has brown hair or a variation of brown hair. Brown hair is the second most common color in the world with black being the most common. Brown hair is caused by higher amounts of brown eumelanin compared to pheomelanin. People with brown hair usually have thick strands of hair although not as thick as red hair. In some cases, “brunette” is a word used to describe individuals with brown hair. The word “brunette” is French and translates to either brown, dark-haired, or brown-haired. 

Most people with brown hair come from Europe. Those people in the northern and central parts of Europe mostly have hair with lighter shades of brown. On the other hand, people with hair that is colored with darker shades of brown come from the remaining parts of Europe, especially the Iberian Peninsula. People with hair that is colored with medium to light shades of brown also exist in large numbers in Australia, the United States, and Canada. Most of these people in these three regions are descendants of immigrants from regions like the eastern, northern, and central Europe.

People with dark brown hair also exist in the Middle East, Central America, and Central and South Asia. In some regions of East Asia, people have hair with an extremely dark brown color, which can be easily confused with black. The same is also true for parts like Pakistan and South America.


More in World Facts