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How to Grow a Beard If You Can’t | Try This

How to Grow a Beard If You Can’t | Try This

While some people may grow a healthy beard within days, others wait an eternity for little to no progress. If you fall into that second category, hope isn’t lost – here’s how to grow a beard if you can’t. 

How Do You Grow a Beard If You Can’t?

Whether it’s genetics, age, or stress that’s impeding your beard progress, here’s a quick recap of how to grow a beard if you can’t: 

  1. Make Sure You’re Taking Care of Your Skin
  2. Try a High-Quality Beard Oil 
  3. Alter Your Diet
  4. Keep Up With Regular Exercise
  5. Don’t Forget About Good Sleep
  6. Try Peppermint Oil 
  7. Give Minoxidil a Chance

For a more in-depth look at how each step can help you grow out your beard, here’s everything you should know below. 

How To Grow a Beard If You Can’t in 7 Steps

Man with a patchy beard for a piece on how to grow a beard if you can't

While some people may have a harder time growing a beard than others, using these six major steps may be able to help you make some major progress with your facial hair. 

1. Make Sure You’re Taking Care of Your Skin

You can use all the supplements you want, but if you’re not taking care of your skin, it can become a struggle for you to grow a beard. Your face is full of tiny pores, which can accumulate dirt throughout the day. 

Enough dirt can block your hair follicles and slow down beard growth, but a daily or even just a weekly skin care routine can make all the difference. To get rid of any excess dirt or dead skin cells, it’s generally recommended to exfoliate your face with a high-quality exfoliating scrub or mask a couple of times per week.

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Exfoliating won’t just stop hair follicles from getting blocked, but there’s even evidence to suggest that getting rid of those dead skin cells can stimulate new hair growth as well.

Keep in mind that good skin care doesn’t just include exfoliating – gently washing and rinsing your face with soapy water and applying moisturizer can also help prevent breakouts or your skin becoming too dry. 

2. Try a High-Quality Beard Oil 

While you may have heard of people using beard oil to make their facial hair look softer or fuller, what about using it for hair growth? Although there’s still research to be done, there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence that suggests using a high-quality beard oil could help stimulate beard growth.

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Many beard oils include essential oils, which can help nourish your skin. And, if you’ve already got a little stubble or some facial hair progress, a high-quality beard oil can help soften the hair that’s already growing. 

While directions can vary from product to product, knowing how to use beard oil correctly is crucial – and here are some general tips to make sure you’re getting the most out of the oil you decide to buy: 

  • Apply the beard oil when your facial hair or stubble is damp but not completely soaked or drenched 
  • Don’t overdo the amount of beard oil you use, especially if you don’t currently have any facial hair. The product should have instructions about how much to use, but most oils don’t direct you to use more than five drops at a time
  • Make sure you work the oil through your entire beard for even growth, and if needed, you can use a comb to brush the oil into your stubble or beard

3. Alter Your Diet

Alter your diet for a piece on how to grow a beard if you can't

New Africa/Shutterstock

Although many people are quick to latch onto supplements and oils for beard growth, there are a few lifestyle changes that can also help you grow a beard – like altering your diet. Your body may struggle to grow a beard if it lacks the essential vitamins and minerals it needs for hair growth. 

Folic acid, for instance, is responsible for healthy cell growth and has the potential to stimulate hair growth as well. Fortunately, this vitamin is found naturally in a lot of healthy foods, including leafy greens, whole grains, and nuts. 

Biotin, another vitamin, plays a big role in how your body produces keratin, the main protein in your hair. Studies have shown that biotin can help improve hair thickness, so there may be potential for beard growth if you’re willing to add it to your diet.

Like folic acid, biotin is found in a lot of fresh foods – like cauliflower, fish, carrots, beans, bananas, and even egg yolks. While you shouldn’t force yourself to eat foods you don’t enjoy, just including more vegetables, fruits, and healthy grains in your diet could make a significant difference in how well (and fast) you end up growing a beard. 

4. Keep Up With Regular Exercise

A major component of healthy beard growth is testosterone, and if you’re not producing enough of this hormone, you probably won’t see a lot of progress with your facial hair. While this isn’t always the cause of not being able to grow a beard, there are some natural ways to boost your testosterone levels – including exercise.

Working out can increase your testosterone levels, and as a result, you may see more facial hair growth as well. This doesn’t mean you have to spend hours in the gym to grow your beard. Playing a sport or lifting weights can all count as a testosterone-boosting workout.

But if you want to see long-term benefits, you’ll need to make it a habit. Since exercise doesn’t raise your testosterone levels for long, you’re most likely to see beard growth benefits if you work out regularly. 

5. Don’t Forget About Good Sleep

Man with a beard sleeping because he can't grow a beard

Just Dance/Shutterstock

Along with regular exercise and a good diet, getting a healthy amount of sleep can also impact your facial hair growth. You may not realize it, but a lack of sleep can make your facial hair grow much slower.

A lot of testosterone is released while you’re sleeping, skipping out on a restful night can have a negative impact on your beard. Another reason why sleep may be important for growing your beard is that it reduces stress.

Too much stress can wreak havoc on your hormone levels, and over time, impede your facial hair. So, if you want to make your body has all the right ingredients (and hormones) to grow a beard, you shouldn’t underestimate the long-term effects of good sleep. 

If you can, aim to get anywhere from 7 to 10 hours per night. Just like exercising, one night may not make a difference, but if you’re continually getting bad sleep, you may end up seeing the results in your beard growth. 

6. Try Peppermint Oil 

In addition to keeping up with natural tactics for beard growth, like exercise, sleep, and a good diet, there may be some products that can help stimulate new hair growth – like peppermint oil. There are a couple of reasons why peppermint oil looks promising for beard growth, such as: 

  • It contains menthol: One of the ingredients in peppermint oil, menthol, can help blood flow. More blood flow also means blood circulating to the follicles, which may be able to help stimulate new hair growth. And, if you struggle with acne or sensitive skin, the menthol can act as an anti-inflammatory as well.
  • It’s an antifungal agent: As we’ve already mentioned, your skin can hold a lot of dirt and bacteria, all of which can impede hair growth. Peppermint is a natural antibacterial and antifungal agent, which means that it can play a role in decreasing the excess bacteria on your skin and face.

Like any product, you should exercise caution when using peppermint oil. On its own, this substance can be extremely potent, which is why it’s usually recommended that you use an oil that’s only 3% or 4% peppermint oil.

In some people, peppermint oil can feel irritating – so, you’ll want to start with a small amount if you choose to use it. And, if you’re worried about using peppermint oil as a separate product, you may be able to find a beard oil or lotion that already contains peppermint oil. 

7. Give Minoxidil/Rogaine a Chance

If you’ve been looking for supplements to jumpstart beard growth or deal with patchiness, there’s a good chance you’ve heard of minoxidil, or rogaine. This over-the-counter remedy is FDA approved, although there is still research being done on its effectiveness for beard growth.

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Rogaine works by expanding your blood vessels, which means that your hair follicles don’t fall out as quickly, and your beard could end up looking fuller. While you can purchase it as the name-brand, Rogaine, you can also find the generic form of Minoxidil over-the-counter as well. 

Like many of the solutions on this list, you probably won’t see instant results with Rogaine, but if you apply it as instructed, you could see new hair growth over time. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Guy using a derma roller for a piece on how to grow a beard if you can't

If you still have questions about how to grow a beard if you can’t, here are some of the most frequently asked questions that people have about this process. 

Can everyone grow a beard? 

Unfortunately, not everyone can grow a beard, despite what you may hear. There can be several reasons for this, but the biggest culprit for having little to no facial hair growth are your genetics. 

A hormone, DHT, must bind to your hair follicles to grow facial hair, but your follicles must be sensitive enough to DHT for this to work.

Your genes determine how sensitive your follicles are, and as a result, whether you’ll be able to grow a beard. Besides genetics, age, ethnicity, low testosterone, and other factors can also contribute to an inability to grow a beard. 

At what age does a beard grow fully? 

While it can vary from person to person and depend on their genetics, most people become capable of growing a full beard between the ages of eighteen and thirty. In some cases, people may be able to get full beard growth before the age of eighteen, but they tend to be the exception rather than the average. 

Does beard oil really work? 

You shouldn’t expect beard oil to work like a magic pill or conjure up instant results, but there is some evidence to suggest it can be effective for beard growth. Not only does it help soften and fill out the facial hair you already have, but it also creates an optimal environment for your body to keep growing a beard. 

What stimulates beard growth? 

Scientifically, there are two hormones that stimulate beard growth: DHT and testosterone. If you’ve got higher levels of these hormones being produced in your body, you’re more likely to grow a beard.

While you may be able to take testosterone supplements with the approval of a doctor, you can also naturally boost your testosterone levels by working out regularly and making sure you get enough sleep. 

Why can’t I grow a beard at 18?

While eighteen tends to be the age where some people become capable of growing a full beard, it varies from individual to individual. Genetics and ethnicity play a huge role in whether you’re able to grow a beard.

But if you’re eighteen and still can’t grow one, it may just not be your time yet. Just like some people may get full beards as teenagers, others may still see patchy hair growth until they’re in their late twenties to early thirties. 

So, How Do You Grow a Beard If You Can’t?

When it comes to growing a healthy, full beard that you’re proud of, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. While some people may see great hair growth with a beard oil, others may need to make lifestyle changes before their beard becomes prominent. 

For many people, growing a healthy beard tends to be a combination of several of these steps and methods – while you may see success with a supplement, making natural changes to your diet or exercise could also make a big impact on your facial hair growth as well.