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5 Facts about Redheads and Their Connection to Ireland

March is Irish Heritage Month

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March is Irish Heritage Month and March 17 is St. Patrick’s Day! While not all redheads are Irish, lots of redheads do have some sort of ancestral connection to Ireland even if your Ancestry.com results say something different. Here’s everything you need to know about redheads and their connection to Ireland: 

1. At least 10% of the Irish population has red hair 

Ireland has one of the highest numbers of redhead people per capita (some reports claim Scotland has more, while others boast Ireland is in first).

2. Fishermen in Ireland believed that to see a red-haired woman was very unlucky.

READ: 7 Unique Facts About Redheads

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3. It is estimated that 46% of the Irish population carries the recessive freckles gene.

Red hair is recessive and redheads usually carry more recessive traits. Check it out here. 

4. While red hair is synonymous with Ireland, it didn’t even originate there. Red hair can actually be traced back to Central Asia. 

So whether you’re a redhead with Irish roots or not, your genes probably originated from the same place. But who would have thought it was Central Asia?!

READ: 5 Reasons St. Patrick’s Day is Unofficial Redhead’s Day

5. The original depiction of a leprechaun didn’t have red hair. That idea came later in the more modern interpretation of the leprechaun. 

Over time the leprechaun image was changed as a symbol of the Irish. Their clothes were made green and their hair red. Is it because there are a high number of redheads in Ireland? Or are the colors for the Irish flag? Maybe. Read the entire story here. 

Rock it like a Redhead! 


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