Plural of Hair
The Quick AnswerHair is singular when it refers to an entire head of hair (e.g., brown hair, blonde hair, curly hair).
When describing individual strands of hair, the plural is hairs.
The Plural of HairWhen describing an entire head covered with individual hairs, hair is treated as a single object or group, which is why it is referred to in a singular form.
- I washed my hair this morning. (Here, hair is refering to the entire head. It is a mass noun.)
- I found three gray hairs this morning. (Here, hairs refers to three individual strands. They are countable.)
Are You Good at Plurals?Here's a quick test.
The Standard Rules for Forming the PluralsThe table below shows the standard rules for forming the plurals of nouns in English.
|Type||Example of Type||Forming the Plural||Plural|
|Most Nouns|| hair
|add s|| hairs
|Noun Ending s, sh, ch, x or z|| bus
|add es|| buses
|Nouns ending [consonant] o|| mango
|add either s or es
(There are no rules for this - you have to know.)
| mangoes or mangos
|Nouns ending [vowel] o|| patio
|add s|| patios
|Nouns ending [consonant] y|| story
|change the y to an i and add es|| stories
|Nouns ending [vowel] y|| monkey
|add s|| monkeys
|Mass nouns|| hair
|some nouns do not have a plural form
|Nouns ending f or fe|| dwarf
|ves and/or s
(There are no rules - you have to know.)
|some nouns undergo a vowel or letters change|| geese
|More exceptions|| salmon
|some nouns have their own rules|| salmon
Why Is There Confusion over the Plural of hair?Confusion arises because hair is typically a mass noun. A mass noun is a noun without a plural form. Mass nouns refer to things that can't be counted (e.g., rice, milk, chalk).
When refering to strands of hair, hair can be countable. The plural is hairs.