Mold-Free Hair: Understanding What Types of Fungi Can Grow There

Mold is a fungus that develops in damp environments and reproduces using spores. While there’s no scientific evidence that mold grows on human hair, another fungus type called yeast can grow on the scalp and result in hair loss. This article examines fungi hair growth and what types of yeast can grow on your scalp.

What Fungi May Affect Your Scalp and Hair?

Different yeast infections can potentially grow on your scalp or hair, including:

Trichophyton tonsurans: This is responsible for approximately 95 percent of yeast overgrowth cases in the United States
Tinea capitis: This is a common scalp infection caused by a yeast infection
Black piedra: A key sign of this fungal infection is black growths on your hair shafts. It is mostly common in tropical regions, especially in people with long hair and poor scalp hygiene
Malassezia: A malassezia yeast overgrowth can cause seborrheic dermatitis and result in dandruff

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), mold spores can rarely enter your body through skin cuts and cause a severe infection. This is known as cutaneous mucormycosis, a life-threatening disease common in immunocompromised people.

How Can You Prevent Fungal Hair Growth?

While you don’t have to worry about mold growing in your hair, you can lower the chances of transferring infection-causing yeast by:

● Showering after exercising and drying your hair completely
● avoiding sleeping with wet hair
● Using a different towel to clean the infected area
● Avoiding contact with pets that could have ringworm
● Avoiding sharing combs and towels with people who have ringworm

What Are The Common Risk Factors for Developing Fungi in Your Hair?

Scalp ringworm occurs more in children than adults, with a peak diagnosis age range between 3 and 14 years. Children who attend daycare or visit other places with other children increase the possibility of contracting the fungus.

Certain yeast infections, such as Candida albicans, also happen more in people with a weakened immune system.

What Are The Symptoms of Fungi Growth in Your Hair?

Symptoms of a cutaneous mucormycosis include:

● pain
● blisters
● swelling
● redness

Ringworm infection of your scalp could cause:

● bald patches that get bigger
● scaly or inflamed hair patches
● tenderness or pain on the scalp
● brittle or fragile hair

What’s The Treatment for Hair Fungal Growth?

Fungal infection treatment on your hair or scalp depends on the underlying cause:

Scalp Ringworm

According to the CDC, scalp ringworm must be treated with prescription antifungal creams, powders, or lotions for 1 to 3 months. Treatment options include:

● Itraconazole
● Terbinafine
● Fluconazole

Cutaneous Mucormycosis

This condition needs immediate medical attention with treatment options, including antifungal medications or surgical removal of damaged tissue.


Shaving your head is the most effective way to treat piedra. Alternatively, you can apply antifungal creams or shampoos such as 2 percent miconazole for 3 weeks.


Although most people are searching for a way to remove hair mold, there’s no scientific proof that mold grows human hair.

However, some other fungi, like yeast and piedra, can grow on your scalp or hair. They can be easily managed at home, or you can consult a doctor to diagnose your infection and recommend a treatment plan.