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Why Do We Need a Hair Sample?

A primary goal of this study is to compare levels of stress between you and your child by examining the cortisol that can be measured in hair. By looking at this stress hormone among dyads, we hope to learn more about the two of you on a biological level! We will not be examining any other factors and your information will be kept confidential.

We will be sending you materials for you to collect you and your child's hair sample. After you receive the materials for hair collection in the mail, please follow the steps described below for both you and your child.

What You Need:

  • Scissors

  • Comb

  • Hair Clip

  • Floss or String

  • Aluminum Foil

How to Collect Hair Sample:

  • Starting at the end of each eyebrow, trace a horizontal line and separate hair so that you divide two large sections. You should have a top and bottom section.

  • Use a hair clip to lift and hold the top section of hair, revealing the midsection of the scalp.

  • Collect a bundle of hair of about 3 - 5mm, which is about half the diameter of a pencil. When you separate the sample, trace horizontally as well.

  • Comb the strand.

  • Using a piece of floss, tie a double knot around the bundle about .5 inches away from the scalp. The knot will indicate which side of the clipping was closest to the root. Do not tie too close to the scalp because the floss might fall off or untie when you cut the hair.

  • Cut the hair above the knot and as close as possible to the root. Keep the tie on the hair when you store the clipping.

  • Repeat these steps and collect a second hair clipping from a different section along the midline you created.

  • You should have two hair bundles that have a double knot on the root side of your clippings.

  • Use the same process to collect 2 samples of your child's hair

Handling Hair Sample

  • On the piece of aluminum foil, place both hair samples so that they line up with the side labeled, “Root”.

  • Fold the aluminum foil without bending the hair. If your hair is too long to fit without bending the clipping, please cut the ends so that it fits on the foil (not the root side of the clipping).

  • Fold the top and bottom sides first (perpendicular to the hair clipping), and then fold the long sides second (parallel to the hair clipping).

  • Write today’s date on the foil.

  • Place the aluminum foil in an envelope and label the date on the front of the envelope.

Shipping Address

Stacey Doan Claremont McKenna College 850 Columbia Ave. Claremont, CA 91711

To participate in this study:

Enroll Here!