From Middle English *heed-heer, from Old English hēafodhǣr (“hair of the head, headhair”), equivalent to head + hair. Cognate with Dutch hoofdhaar (“headhair”), German Haupthaar (“headhair”), Danish hovedhår (“headhair”), Swedish huvudhår (“headhair”).
- Hair which grows on the head.
- 1967, The Transatlantic review:
- [...] breakfasted before dressing, cleaned up; floors swept, dusted, things moved around and, replaced listened to the news on the radio, shaved carefully, going over the white stubble two times. "Funny how my headhair is dark, not one grey hair, you see, and how my beard, if I let it grow is all white. [...]"
- 1973, George Quasha, Jerome Rothenberg, America, a prophecy:
- [...] Brothers strut like generals spinning & tangling of hair entanglement of headhairs was among them [...]
- 1992, Buddhadeb Chaudhuri, Religion, Rituals and Festivals:
- The midwife shaves the headhair of the child, takes it in a Phumk (vessel of Sal leave) and immerse in the water of Bonga-Pokhri.
- 2002, Sandro Meallet, Edgewater Angels:
- I could see my snipped-to-pieces and differentlengthed [sic] headhair all over her knees.
- 2009, Barbara Zipser, John the Physician's Therapeutics:
- If something else (gets in the ear) put the tips of the headhair in the ear as far as possible.
- Far more common as two words: head hair.
- The plural headhairs is used when referring to more than one individual strand of hair on or from the head, but is also very rare.