Not all guys are blessed with a full beard that grows wild and free. Much of the male population doesn’t even see a five o’clock shadow until the next day, if at all.
With the style craze all about beards at the moment, it makes sense that men who struggle with facial hair growth are looking for ways to better their situation. Over-the-counter treatments are a sensible first step.
This is where minoxidil — the topical medicine better known as Rogaine — comes into play. Many guys figure that if it works to stimulate scalp hair, they might as well try it on their chin, cheeks, and mustache to get those potential beard benefits, right?
That’s our mission today: to discover if minoxidil is a hidden hack for beard growth or if you’re better off spending your cash and energy elsewhere to get results.
You may recognize minoxidil as one of the only two FDA-approved hair loss medications on the market, alongside oral finasteride. That’s no small feat considering the effort and investment in the hair restoration field each year.
But how does minoxidil work? Minoxidil is unique because it functions as a vasodilator, expanding blood vessels and boosting oxygen uptake, nutrient absorption, and other factors to help potentially activate scalp hair growth.
Researchers have found that follicle life cycles shorten and stagnate, leading to the miniaturization of hair and eventual loss. Minoxidil helps to potentially reverse that trend over time, combating the main mechanism of androgenic alopecia or male pattern balding.
All that additional blood flow helps keep hair alive and well, extending the anagen phase of follicle growth while minimizing the telogen, or resting phase. With ongoing use, hair is preserved for longer, and many patients even report hair returning in spots like the frontal scalp and vertex, the typical “Norwood pattern” areas of concern.
Minoxidil may help scalp hair survive for longer, but what about helping beards grow? Now that we know how the mechanisms of medicine work, we can make a more informed assessment.
The truth is that minoxidil hasn’t been studied with nearly the same level of scrutiny for facial hair, even though a small handful of examples show promise. When dealing with medicines for hair restoration, it’s always best to avoid products that aren’t widely recommended by doctors and choose those that are approved by the FDA.
While minoxidil does have FDA support for scalp hair, that stamp of approval doesn’t apply to beard growth. Furthermore, the evidence doesn’t add up for beard growth via minoxidil, so you would do best to skip this one and choose a proven option instead.
Androgenetic alopecia doesn’t appear to impact facial hair in terms of miniaturization and loss, further suggesting that minoxidil’s active ingredients don’t promote beard growth. At best, minoxidil is a supplementary medicine to help prevent hair loss on the scalp, rather than regrowth.
Preserving scalp hair from male pattern balding is one thing, while actively trying to boost beard growth is another objective altogether, with different processes working behind the scenes.
Minoxidil is therefore not a “copy-and-paste” solution for beard growth simply because it shows promise in preventing scalp hair loss.
Between the lack of clinical support and the science of alopecia vs. facial hair development, we can only conclude that minoxidil isn’t suited for beard growth, and other methods are more worth your time and effort.
Minoxidil isn’t approved for beard growth and it also comes with some risks that men should keep in mind when considering it for facial hair.
First of all, beard growth outcomes will vary depending on factors both environmental and genetic. Likewise, not everyone will respond to minoxidil similarly, and usage may backfire in some cases.
Side effects of daily minoxidil use may include redness, irritation, rashes, or bumps on the skin. Facial skin is especially sensitive. It’s best to avoid abrasive chemicals of all kinds when dealing with this area of the body.
Some users report feeling nausea or headache after administering this medicine in higher doses. Applying minoxidil to the face also increases the chance of ingestion or exposure to the eyes and nose — a move that’s definitely not recommended.
Minoxidil can also add up in cost over time, as well. $30 or $40 per month is not an insignificant sum, and as soon as you stop using the medicine, the results will not last. In other words, you’re stuck using minoxidil indefinitely once you start. Again, this is all for a medicine that might help your beard grow, but it isn’t FDA-approved for that purpose — and there are far better alternatives.
For permanent hair restoration, It’s wiser to consult with a beard expert like Jae Pak, M.D. to determine the best course of action to craft a plan that yields real results.
Leading hair professionals agree: minoxidil is not a useful addition to a beard growth strategy. However, many tactics can help move the dial regarding facial hair quality, longevity, and overall satisfaction.
If you’re ready to take beard growth seriously, you need an all-encompassing game plan that includes lifestyle, grooming, treatments, and more.
Here’s how to take a holistic, effective approach from square one.
The influence of lifestyle on hormonal health and beard growth can’t be overstated. In just a few months of optimizing for increased testosterone and lowered estrogen, men can see dramatic changes in their facial hair coverage, density, and speed of growth.
Diet, exercise, and sleep are the three main pillars of male health. If any men are lacking in the healthy lifestyle department, it might be time to get back on track.
In the meantime, medicines like oral finasteride can help minimize DHT buildup in the scalp and prevent loss on the hairline and vertex. But, such moves are best made when part of a comprehensive hair transplant plan under the guidance of a skilled surgeon.
Beards continue to develop in thickness and coverage until the age of 30, so time may be the missing link in achieving your ideal look.
For some men, it’s just a matter of waiting a few more years to attain their genetic potential. Minoxidil will not accelerate the process.
Since nobody can speed up the hands of time, consulting with a proven hair restoration pro like Jae Pak, M.D. is a more resourceful option. His personalized recommendations can help you figure out the best approach to your beard woes through a beard transplant and could help you save time and hassle in the process.
Facial hair responds particularly well to direct stimulation, from brushing and massaging to frequent shaving, trimming, and applying oils. Even if you aren’t happy with the current state of your beard, you can start seeing results by using a more rigorous grooming routine.
Commit to doing something each day to stimulate your facial hair, using dedicated tools and products to help keep you engaged. Besides, it never hurts to sharpen your skills and craft the look that best suits your face and style.
These habits could pay off in the long run if you decide to seek out a hair transplant consultation. Your efforts could compound for big returns.
Many patients are attracted to minoxidil because it’s widely accessible and easy to use — but it’s not FDA-approved for beard growth. Using a product “off label” without the explicit recommendation of a physician can be dangerous. You can’t predict how it will work or the potential side effects.
Your best option is to seek guidance on your beard growth. A professional hair transplant doctor can examine your beard and present you with potential plans. If those plans include medicine, you’ll be able to find out about any potential risks involved and better weigh your options.
With the right care, you’ll know if your beard growth is typical for your age or if there are things you can do to help improve its appearance. Either way, this is one situation where you don’t want to rely on hearsay for guidance. Find a great surgeon and schedule a consultation to learn more
This removes all ambiguity and keeps you on the right track for the best possible results.
Men have better options to bring their beards to the next level. You don’t need to rely on something that “might work,” especially when there are proven beard treatments available.
For men who want more immediate and permanent results, beard transplants are now a widely popular procedure with high client satisfaction rates. Surgeons like Jae Pak, M.D. lead the field with technical expertise, artistic vision, and execution.
Minoxidil isn’t FDA-approved for beard growth. The good news is that you have other options.
With Dr. Jae Pak, you can explore proven methods for beard growth to find the best fit for you. From lifestyle optimization to advanced therapies and transformative surgeries, Jae Pak MD Medical will set you on the path to your perfect beard, no matter your starting point.
Speak with Jae Pak, M.D. today!Request a Consultation