(STUDY FINDS) -- CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Goosebumps can be an odd sight. Some people get them when they’re cold, while others get them when they’re spooked or excited. So what causes these little bumps to pop up on your skin? Harvard University scientists say they have the reason and it’s all about growing hair. A recent study finds the same muscles and nerves that cause your goosebumps also tell your cells it’s time to make more hair.
Although animals with thick fur seem to use this trait to protect themselves against cold weather, it has seemed to have little use for modern-day humans. The report in the journal Cell finds muscles in the skin contract to make goosebumps. These muscles also form a bridge between sympathetic nerves and stem cells in control of your hair.
When it’s cold, your skin feels it and this system reacts. In the short-term, they’re giving you goosebumps. In the long-term however, the Harvard team says these nerves send out signals telling hair follicles to activate.
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