- Percentage Of People Who Have It: 1 to 2%
If you thought having naturally blonde hair as an adult seemed rare, having red hair is even rarer. Many assume most people from Ireland have red hair, or at least several in the United Kingdom. However, the most common hair color there (as it is worldwide) is brown or black. In fact, you’ll find more people with brown hair in Ireland than red hair. While some assume if your mother or father has red hair, you will too, this is not always the case.
People can have redheads in the family but still not end up with this color. However, if one does have red hair, it is always due to genetics. Red hair comes from a mutation in the melanocortin 1 receptor or MC1R, which is usually passed down from parent to child. Essentially, this causes the body’s skin and hair cells to produce more than one specific type of melanin, as well as less of another. In some cases, the mutation does not affect a child but will still be passed on to their future child.