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How to Mature a Vellus Hair Beard | Detailed Guide

How to Mature a Vellus Hair Beard | Detailed Guide

Some teenagers, young, and even adult men don’t like patchy, young-looking beard hair when they look in the mirror. Vellus hair beard can be a turnoff to other people, which is the opposite of what young men want.

What Is a Vellus Hair Beard?

Man with a vellus hair beard

Krishna8412/Shutterstock

Vellus beard hair consists of small, early puberty and pre-pubescent hair. These hairs lack the full beard-look that most, but not all, men attain in adulthood. Peach fuzz is another label that describes a vellus hair beard. 

A lot of men and young men watch closely as their face begins to grow hair. Some men identify this growth as a masculine feature and don’t wish to shave and, in their eyes, look more feminine or younger.

In reality, the changes that occur around puberty aren’t new hair. They are new hair growth. The hair follicles and tiny hairs form in the womb. The same hair follicles that grow a man’s beard, form in the womb. The hairs grow thicker and gain pigment.

For some men, young and old, the facial hairs don’t transition to thick, full beard hairs. The question is, can a thin beard grow into a full beard? Can we help the process along? The answer is, yes. Keep reading to see how.

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How Vellus Hair Becomes Terminal

Terminal hair is the term for thick, full, real beard hair. Most men get terminal facial hair by just waiting in the process and getting older. Some teenagers may want to help the process along.

A percentage of full-grown men also don’t get good quality terminal hair and want to change the way their facial skin grows hair.

Androgens

Androgens are the most important catalyst in vellus hair converting to terminal hair, namely testosterone and DHT. These two powerful hormones trigger masculine DNA conversions all over the body. Beard hair is no exception. 

When Androgens make contact with hair cell receptors, the masculinizing effect occurs. Facial hair grows thicker, longer, and takes on a darker color. A lack of terminal facial hair means low androgen levels, receptors with low sensitivity, or a combination therein.

For men who have only been able to grow moderate facial hair for at least a decade, you are about to receive some good advice. Assuming, of course, you want to be able to grow a beard.

Derma Microneedle Roller

Man using a derma roller for his Vellus beard

vchal/Shutterstock

Microneedles as hair growth stimulators, for balding hairlines to vellus hair beards, are cutting-edge science at the moment. There are studies, but not many, and most studies involve minoxidil, which we will discuss later.

Which Microneedle Should You Buy?

There are a few things to know about microneedle rollers for beard growth. Microneedles come in different lengths and get spaced apart differently for various purposes. The length of the needle is important.

Manufacturers make rollers as small as 0.2 mm. Three millimeters are about as large as they get. The reason for the range of sizes is that not all skin is equally thick. There are places on the body with thick and thin skin. As people age, skin often gets thinner as well. 

Each person needs to feel their skin and determine which needle is appropriate. A lot of faces can probably take a 1 mm to 1.5 mm microneedle roller. Bear in mind, longer needles result in more pain. Only get a 0.5 mm roller if you want to ease in with a trial.

Read Next: Best Derma Rollers for Beards

The Studies

Labs have completed several studies. Most of the studies use microneedling with minoxidil. The control is only using minoxidil. I didn’t feel that combining microneedling with minoxidil got the point across.

When I saw these studies I wanted the control to be microneedle monotherapy. After some digging, I found one study. There is room for a lot more work on the topic.

The study concluded that microneedling alone is significantly more effective at generating hair growth in men with male pattern baldness than minoxidil monotherapy. Combining microneedling and minoxidil produces significantly better results again.

The idea here is to microneedle first. Create a bunch of tiny holes and apply hair treatment. The hair treatment sinks in better through the micro-holes the needling left behind. The most fascinating result from the studies is that minoxidil alone isn’t very effective.

Microneedling as monotherapy works better. If a microneedle helps men with male pattern baldness regrow hair that appeared lost, the treatment definitely can work on beard hair. We will address later what the combined therapies do.

Read Next: Minoxidil for Beard Growth

L-Carnitine L-Tartrate

A man might not produce enough testosterone and DHT to grow a good beard. Plenty of these key hormones may course through the body and not get picked up by desensitized androgen receptors.

Either way, a man doesn’t grow a full beard. A lot of east-Asian men don’t grow full beards due to the latter cause. Their genetics cause there to be a lot more androgen receptors. More receptors equal less sensitivity.

How to Increase Androgen Sensitivity

The amino acid l-carnitine l-tartrate helps to increase sensitivity by increasing energy flow to the anagen hair matrix. L-carnitine l-tartrate increases energy flow during the anagen phase. This is one of the more effective beard growth supplements around.

Good news if you’re also a bald guy, the added energy flow helps generate new hair due to androgenetic alopecia, or male pattern baldness. Only 2 grams per day of carnitine made androgen receptors more sensitive in human studies.

A person’s level of exercise didn’t seem to make a big difference. Improving hair follicle growth during the anagen phase helps with losing hair. Does beard hair growth get encouraged as well? Yes, the process works both ways.

The only difference is that people try to prevent hairs from falling out on their scalp. Some men want to encourage hair growth on their faces. An increase in DHT encourages facial hair growth but shrivels hairs on the scalp, usually in a pattern.

L-carnitine l-tartrate doesn’t encourage or inhibit DHT. The anagen phase of hair growth only receives more energy. Whatever amount of DHT is present in the body will be part of the energy increase. However, the energy increase doesn’t produce more DHT.

Minoxidil 5%

Bottles and box of minoxidil on a counter to help grow a Vellus Hair Beard

Stocker193/Shutterstock

Minoxidil is a widely available over-the-counter hair regrowth formula. Most people associate the treatment with hair loss, particularly male pattern baldness. The good news with hair treatments is that if a product like minoxidil works on the scalp, you can grow beard hair too. 

What to Expect from Minoxidil and Vellus Hair Beard

Just like some men slowly lose their hair in a pattern, there is somewhat of a pattern for growing new hair. Remember that the hair is already there. The already present vellus hair needs to transform to terminal hair.

Expect to see vellus hair grow wider and longer, but the pigment will still not be dark. Getting darker, terminal hair likely takes months but shouldn’t take a year. People’s different genetic makeups make an exact timeframe impossible to state and apply equally.

How to Boost Minoxidil

As stated earlier, minoxidil alone may or may not be effective. Remember that a hair follicle sits deep in the scalp. Minoxidil, or any other hair treatment, needs to get down in the pore and reach the hair follicles.

Bring the microneedle derma roller back into the picture to get treatment down into the pores where the real work begins. In studies, blending minoxidil and microneedling produces 50% better results. This combination is so effective because topical minoxidil can easily sit on the scalp and not get in.

Plaque and grime often clog pores. Pores might be small and partially closed due to a lack of adequate blood flow. Microneedling, while still somewhat a mystery to science, undoubtedly opens pores and increases blood flow to the scalp by causing miniature injuries.

The discomfort from the tiny injuries dissipates quickly but leaves the scalp health benefits behind. In our case, minoxidil can more easily penetrate the pores after microneedling.

When regrowth occurs, you should see more hair in any given patch. You should also see vellus hair that never gets longer begin to grow. A transition to darker, terminal hair follows weeks to months later. Waiting for months is more likely.

If you want to apply minoxidil to your beard combined with microneedle treatment, shave or keep your facial hair short. Microneedles can pull out longer hairs. Microneedles cause minor discomfort on bare skin. Pulling out hairs, in addition, isn’t pleasant.

After microneedling, apply 1-2 ml of minoxidil. You should only microneedle once or twice a week because the small wounds need to heal. Follow the instructions of the brand of minoxidil you choose.

Additional Option: How to Clean Pores

Graphic of someone cleaning a pore for a piece on growing a Vellus beard

Barks/Shutterstock

Clean pores can help lay the groundwork for microneedling and minoxidil treatment. Microneedling alone opens pores. Additional cleaning can only help.

Ingredients:

  • ½ tbs. Himalayan or Celtic Sea Salt (any sea salt will help)
  • 1 tsp. powdered activated charcoal
  • 50 ml ginger juice
  • 50 ml cucumber juice
  • 1 whole lemon (or lime) juice
  • A juicer or blender and cheesecloth

Get all the juice from a juicer or blender and use a strainer or cheesecloth to get out all bits still present. Combine the juice and the rest of the ingredients in a bottle and shake.

Massage the mixture into your skin and wait 5-10 minutes before rinsing with warm water. You can repeat as necessary or work the mixture into your regular grooming schedule once or twice a week.

Mucuna Pruriens

Mucuna Pruriens is a great way to stimulate beard hair growth. Still relatively obscure compared to mainstream treatments, this hair growth extract comes from the velvet bean. Mucuna increases testosterone.

The l-dopa compound functions as a human androgen receptor active protein. Mucuna is a double-win. A boost in testosterone means better terminal hair growth. An androgen receptor forms a bond that allows vellus hair to transform into terminal hair.

The extract is relatively cheap, so the treatment is effective, and the price is a steal. Mucuna is high on my list of best ways to grow beard hair or to grow hair, period.

Eat a Healthy Diet

Bunch of healthy food for a piece titled Vellus Hair Beard

Margouillat Photo/Shutterstock

You may have noticed some ingredients and products mentioned are synonymous with good health. The similarities to a healthy diet aren’t a coincidence. Too many people rely on processed fast food. Not enough people make their food, so they know what goes into their bodies.

Everybody has different abilities and operates on different schedules. If you can find the time to make some easy purchases, at least growing some microgreens under lights will dramatically improve your health. 

If you currently rely on people to cook for you, try to find extra time to make a change. Don’t buy polyunsaturated fats. Instead, use good fats like butter, lard, beef tallow, and olive oil. Eat a balanced diet of greens, meats, fats, and carbs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will vellus hair turn into a beard?

Yes, the transformation of vellus hair into terminal hair is a normal part of male puberty. With treatments, you can encourage vellus hair to become terminal hair.

How long does it take for vellus hair to become a terminal beard?

During puberty, the process goes at the rate each male produces more testosterone and DHT. To change vellus hair to terminal hair with treatment usually takes months, perhaps a year.

How do you turn a vellus beard into terminal hair?

There are different treatment options, but the main point is to increase blood flow to the skin around the hair. Microneedle rollers help a lot, minoxidil, and a good diet.

Do vellus hairs get thicker?

Yes, they get thicker naturally during puberty in males. When treatment to encourage terminal hair growth works, vellus hairs get thicker and longer.

Does peach fuzz turn into facial hair?

Yes, peach fuzz, also called vellus hair, grows out of the same hair follicles that terminal hair does. For a variety of reasons, the only difference is the type of hair the follicle grows.

So, What Is Vellus Hair Beard?

Vellus hair beard is a reversible, with the right treatment, type of hair growth where only peach fuzz grows. Various treatments that increase blood flow and encourage testosterone and DHT production can help vellus hair transform into terminal, quality beard, hair.