How to Help Patchy Beard Growth
What man doesn’t dream of growing a full, luscious beard? Whether you’re aiming for a perfectly crafted David Beckham, or a rugged Tom Hardy, having the ability to control your facial hair as you see fit is nearly every guy’s dream.
However, when the desire strikes to go full lumberjack, you find yourself quickly discouraged as those pesky patchy spots start to show. Each morning, you look in the mirror with the anticipation of fresh facial hair. Instead, all you can see is the emptiness where your new beard should be growing.
Take a deep breath and put down that razor. Believe it or not, patchy beard growth affects many men, including those with fabulous facial hair. There are endless techniques to improve the volume of your facial hair, from the simple, to the scientific.
What Causes A Patchy Beard
So why does facial hair become spotty in the first place? Though there isn’t one straight answer, it generally all goes back to genetics and hormones. These two factors then work together in telling your hormones when, where, and how your hair will grow.
The most important hormones to determining beard growth are called androgens. As you might guess, testosterone is the essential androgen in boosting that bushy beard.
Ideally, an ample amount of testosterone travels into each of your hair follicles. The testosterone then tells the dermal papilla, which is basically the hair follicle’s control center, to start growing. Once inside the cell, testosterone is converted to its active form called dihyrdotestosterone, or DHT by the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase. Without this enzyme the hormones will not be able to act on the follicle. If any of these hormones or enzymes are lacking, a spotty beard is often the result.
Overall, genetics determine the number of hair follicles you have and some people are simply naturally hairier. Some ethnic groups are simply predisposed to be hairrier and some less so. Asians and Native Americans are known for less beard and body hair while Mediterraneans and Indians are known for more but these are generalizations.
Genetics are also to blame for how your body responds to normal levels of hormones. According to this University of Melbourne study, heredity is to blame for nearly 80% of baldness. Men who are bald or have thicker beards are not necessarily producing more testosterone. However, when testosterone is found in excess you often see increase in beard and body hair but recession of scalp hair.
Why Someone Might Want to Improve Their Facial Hair
Patchy beard growth is a very common problem for many men around the world. Though it’s easy to feel like you’re the only one with sparse beard woes, rest assured you’re not alone.
Though some men might deny their desire to sport facial hair, showing off a robust beard is an undeniable sign of masculinity. The inability to produce this perceived standard of manliness often gives way to feelings of inadequacy.
Hearty beard growth may not be vital to survival, but for many, the confidence gained from finally achieving their dream locks can be positively life changing.
5 Ways to Improve Patchy Beards
1. Grow it Out
Give your beard time to live up to its full potential. It’s discouraging to see those bald spots pop up right after you quit shaving, but don’t give up hope! Great beards take patience.
Uniform hair growth can often take months. Push though those awkward, itchy phases and don’t end your beard growth journey before it really begins.
2. Groom to your Advantage
Like a snowflake, every beard is different. Learn to groom specifically for the facial hair you have. Trim areas to even out inconsistent lengths, or highlight the more luscious areas of growth.
Use beard balm to style longer hair over patchy spots. Brush out your beard to create extra volume. Find your own best tricks to distract or shave away from those problem areas, and focus on where it’s fullest.
3. Vitamin Supplements & Better Nutrition
Vitamins, supplements, or a better diet altogether can be an extremely effective way to provide your body with any nutrients you may be lacking.
Vitamin deficiencies can cause sparse hair growth and taking supplements such as Vitamins C, E, B6 & B12, biotin, Omega-3 & -6 fatty acids, and zinc may help. Check out this great list of vitamins and minerals for beard growth from Beard Resource.
4. Medical Treatments
If you’re intent on growing that beard no matter the price, several medical treatments do exist. Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) uses platelets extracted from the patient, which are then injected into patchy areas may stimulating hair growth.
Hair transplants also make for an effective option. Medical professionals will use your own scalp hair as the donor hair, which is then grafted to fill in those unwanted patchy, facial hair spots.
If you choose to go the medial route, always conduct thorough research to ensure your provider is an expert specifically certified in hair growth treatments.
Foams, shampoos and solutions containing Minoxidil (e.g. Rogaine) are intended to growth scalp hair and can be discussed for use on facial hair. Latisse (bimatoprost) is approved to stimulate eyelash growth but is another potential topical treatment.
5. Own it
We’re always the hardest on ourselves. Take a close look at most bearded men. It’s likely you’ll notice patchy areas on them as well. Choosing to accept the beard you were born with is often the best way to go.
Remember, confidence looks great on everyone.
Looking for more expert advice on growing the healthy beard you desire? Curious what treatment options might be available for any of your hair needs? Call the Limmer Hair Transplant Center at (210) 496-9992 or request an online appointment today. We’re here to make you confident and comfortable with however you choose to wear your hair.