In this article:
A full, thick beard is often perceived as a representation of masculinity and a feature of alpha males. Thus, it is not uncommon to hear teenage boys wanting a thick beard as soon as possible.
Various factors influence beard growth. While you cannot alter your genes, you can improve your diet and take care of your facial hair to facilitate its growth.
This article will discuss the medical treatments, home remedies, and self-care measures that you can do to support the growth of a full beard. This article will also bust myths surrounding beards.
Causes of Poor Beard Growth
Beard growth and facial hair quality depend on multiple factors:
- Genetic makeup: Ethnicity and genes are the major factors influencing beard type and growth. Chinese men, for example, are seen to have finer beard growth than Caucasians. (1)
- Hormonal issues: Low levels of testosterone, commonly as a result of hypogonadism, can delay beard growth.
- Autoimmune conditions: The immune system may attack the body’s own cells, such as the hair follicles, and stimulate hair fall and bald patches, causing alopecia areata on the beard or scalp.
- Nutritional deficiencies: A lack of some nutrients can make the beard thinner, and low protein levels in the body can result in reduced testosterone production and beard growth. (2)
- Medications: Different medications or treatment therapies such as chemotherapy may stimulate thinning of the beard and hair as a side effect.
- Age: Hair fall and balding are part of the natural aging process.
Ways to Grow a Thick Beard
Several methods can boost beard growth, increase its density, and also prevent hair thinning to help achieve a full beard.
Consult your doctor on the use of the following treatment modalities:
- Hair growth medications: Minoxidil is the only topical medication for thinning hair approved by the FDA. While these treatments are formulated for scalp hair, they can be used for the beard as well. (3)
- Hair transplant: You can also consult your doctor for hair transplant procedures if you have bald patches in your beard.
- Treatment of the underlying condition: If an underlying condition is hindering the growth of your beard, your doctor will suggest a suitable treatment after a careful evaluation.
A number of over-the-counter products that you can use from the comfort of your home can help improve beard growth and texture.
1. Beard balm
Beard balms are generally used for styling and shaping the beard, often making the beard look thicker, but these products also moisturize the beard, acting as a leave-in conditioner.
Various beard balms are available commercially, and it is best to select those that contain natural ingredients such as cocoa butter, shea butter, and beeswax, instead of petroleum jelly-based balms, which can irritate the skin. These ingredients act as sealants that help hold the beard shape.
In addition, look for moisturizing components such as jojoba oil, which helps improve facial hair health.
2. Beard oil
Similar to oiling your scalp hair, it is vital to oil your beard hair to encourage healthy growth. You can use beard oils, which are readily available.
These oils not only provide nourishment and softness to the hair but also hydrate the skin beneath your beard, therefore preventing itchiness. Besides, massaging the hair and skin with the oil boosts blood flow to the area, improving hair growth.
It is recommended to select beard oils containing natural plant-based oils such as jojoba oil.
3. Beard shampoo
You need to wash your beard to maintain hygiene and prevent problems such as infections that can impede hair growth. Since facial skin is sensitive, avoid using normal shampoos to wash your beard; instead, go for special beard shampoos to cleanse your beard once a week.
4. Beard dye
Dyeing your beard doesn’t affect its growth, but dark colors can give a thicker appearance. This is especially useful if you have a light-colored beard. Camouflage is a temporary fix. Beard sprays, dyes, and powders are used to mimic a full and thick beard.
Self-Care Measures: Beard Grooming
Grooming your beard is an essential step in making your beard look thick, full, healthy, and clean. It is suggested to trim your beard whenever it becomes uneven at the ends or you notice split ends.
Trimming your beard timely also prevents it from tangling. Make sure to trim your beard in a smooth, set shape to make it appear full. You can also trim and shape your sideburns and the cheek line of your beard for a sharp appearance.
To achieve a perfectly shaped beard, it is recommended to invest in a beard tool and exercise patience when trimming it.
Myths About Beard Growth
These are common myths about beard growth:
1. Shave your beard often to grow thicker hair faster.
Shaving your beard only makes the tip of the hair blunt rather than pointy. Therefore, when your hair grows back, it appears thicker on the surface, while in reality, they are of the same thickness as before.
2. Smoking can lower testosterone production.
How long does it take to grow a full beard?
The growth rate of facial hair is influenced by genetics, medical history, and lifestyle factors. On average, your beard may grow in 2–4 months at approximately ½ inch every month.
Can dermarollers boost beard hair growth?
It is not advised to use dermarollers for stimulating beard growth, especially at home, as their use is associated with an increased risk of infections.
Many men desire a full, thick beard, but hair thinning and bald spots in the beard may develop. The good thing is several treatments can boost beard growth and give it a full appearance.
Besides treating your beard, it is also vital to take good care of it by maintaining its hygiene and getting proper nutrition. Also, try not to worry much about having a full, thick beard as beard growth is largely influenced by genetics, which is something out of your control.