Like many of us, you must have heard that shaving increases beard growth, and that facial hair grows back faster and thicker after shaving. Also, you must have several questions in mind: What shaving method will be the best for beard growth? Should I do wet shaving or dry shaving? It’s natural to find the answers to the questions which have been preoccupying your mind.
In this article, we will try to remove your confusion and answer all your questions.
Does wet shaving help beard growth?
While wet shaving has its benefits, no scientific proof exists to support the claim that shaving helps beard growth. Shaving, whether wet or dry, does not help grow your hair thicker, faster, or darker either. The growth of your beard, instead, depends on your age, health and genetics.
What is Wet Shaving, and How to do it?
A traditional wet shaving involves moistening your skin with water, applying shaving cream on your face using a shaving brush, and then shaving your beard using a single-bladed, straight, or safety razor.
Benefits of Wet Shaving
You should, however, do wet shaving for a variety of good reasons. Wet shave
- Reduces skin irritation,
- Gives you a much neat and clean shave,
- Lubricates the skin,
- Reduces friction between skin and blade/razor,
- Ensure healthy and unclogged follicles.
What factors influence beard growth?
Human hair grows at the same rate regardless of whether you shave your hair or not. However, you can apply oil, increase hormones, and a range of other methods to grow your facial hair.
Your DNA and genes are what determine the color, density, growth, thickness, and other properties of your facial hair. This means, if your father has thick, dense facial hair, you, too, would get the same properties of hair when you reach puberty. Moreover, a human body has hair follicles throughout its surface, and the follicles on the face open after you reach puberty. So, if you are impatient and too young, you should wait until you reach your adolescence.
You should not worry, though, as getting a nice beard is still possible if you follow the methods we are about to discuss shortly.
Testosterone and dihydrotestosterone are two hormones that are essential to hair growth. Both these hormones initiate at the start of puberty and are responsible for developing masculinity. Again, your genetics determine the levels of testosterone your body will produce, but you can increase your testosterone levels naturally that we will discuss shortly in the next section.
3. Medical conditions
Certain medical conditions, such as alopecia, hypothyroidism, anemia, etc., can also affect your beard growth. Let’s discuss these medical conditions briefly.
Alopecia is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system of your body abnormally attacks your own hair follicles, which results in patches of hair loss. The disease can occur on your face as well as your scalp. If you have this medical condition, you should immediately consult your dermatologist. The disease is curable, provided that you strictly follow your dermatologist’s prescriptions.
Hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid gland fails to create the essential quantity of thyroid hormones necessary for the efficient functioning of your body. Low levels of thyroid hormones slow down the metabolism of your body and cause various symptoms, such as hair loss, slow heartbeat, dry hair, fatigue, etc.
In this disease, symptoms are hard to discover. So, if you are experiencing a persistent hair loss condition, you should seek medical advice.
Anemia, a severe form of iron deficiency in the human body, can be a cause of thin beard hair and hair loss. Iron is vital for hair growth as it flows in the blood and carries oxygen to hair follicles resulting in faster and healthy growth of hair.
Therefore, if you feel that you have iron deficiency or its severe form, anemia, you should solicit medical advice. Your physician may advise you to take iron pills or prescribe you a diet plan to help your body recover from iron deficiency.
What to do if you can’t grow a beard?
While you can’t naturally modify your genetics, hormonal levels, and other hereditary factors, you can, however, use various methods and techniques that will help flourish, stimulate and improve your beard growth.
1. Apply a beard oil
Beard oil, a combination of carrier and essential oils, moisturizes the hair follicles and alleviates conditions like weak, dry and brittle hair. You should choose a beard oil having vitamins that will nourish your hair follicles and save your skin from being exposed to harsh environments.
Argan oil is a perfect carrier oil with a neutral smell that contains vitamins A and E, which are essential for promoting the growth of beard and maintaining healthy follicles. While most people avoid using carrier oils like jojoba oil, moringa oil, almond oil, and coconut oil because of their pungent smell, these oils are equally helpful in rejuvenating your hair follicles and protecting your face.
You can use pinewood oil, tea tree oil, eucalyptus oil, cedarwood oil as essential oils.
You have the option to prepare the beard oil yourself by combining essential oil and carrier oils in a ratio, or you can choose to buy the finished product from the market.
You should apply the beard oil daily, preferably, before going to sleep and leave it overnight before washing it in the morning.
2. Do exercise
You should do physical exercises daily to boost your testosterone levels, which will improve your beard growth. If you perform a workout at the gym daily, your body will produce testosterone hormones which are essential for beard growth.
However, you don’t have to do workouts to generate testosterone in your body. You can do any physical exercise you want and try to perform it daily.
Folic acid, a type of vitamin B, is commonly found in green vegetables, oranges, beans, spinach etc,. You should include foods that are rich in folic acid. Folic acid assists the human body in producing new cells, including hair and nails.
You can also take folic acid supplements available in the market.
Along with vitamins, you can also try consuming supplements after your doctor’s advice. Among the supplements, carnitine has shown effectiveness in stimulating beard growth by increasing DHT and testosterone production in the human body.
It is a fact that your beard’s growth and density are closely related to your genetic and hormonal makeup. However, you can still adopt various methods to stimulate and groom your facial hair. You should prefer wet shaving over dry shaving because of its benefits to the skin and hair follicles. Consult your dermatologist if you have medical conditions like beard hair fall or hair loss patches.
Eat healthy foods containing folic acid, which is beneficial for stimulating hair growth and repairing hair follicles. Exercise daily; this will lead to increased levels of testosterones in your body, leading to hair growth.
Take supplements if your doctor prescribes you. Most importantly, apply good beard oil on your beard. If you follow these recommendations, you should see a visible improvement in your beard growth.