My uncle who is 30 years older than me has been able to grow a full beard. I got curious whether when I reach his age if my beard will fill in. I did some digging here is what I found.
Facial hair will get thicker and fuller with age, as you age your androgen receptors (beard genes) become more sensitive to both beards growing hormones (testosterone and DHT), increasing the growth and thickness of your beard. However, not everyone will experience beard thickness with age due to factors such as genes, ethnicity, hormones, or health conditions.
The good news is that you can use beard-growing tricks such as a derma roller and rogaine/ minoxidil to fill in your patchy areas and thicken your beard.
What causes the beard to get thicker with age?
Proper production of testosterone
Mostly, men have the same levels of testosterone levels. But there are a few who do not have the required amount of testosterone. When you hit puberty, testosterone production increases as it is also used in the formation of your secondary male characteristics.
While the extent of beard growth is solely on your genes, low levels of testosterone will also hinder your beard from attaining its maximum potential.
Testosterone and DHT are the two androgens responsible for beard growth. Testosterone will prime beard follicles while DHT will promote the linear growth of your beard. Therefore, having low levels of the two hormones will greatly affect your beard growth.
The levels of testosterone remain high until you hit 30 and testosterone levels decrease by 1% per year upwards. Most men will start to experience increased beard thickening from the early 20s to late 20s and early 30s.
With age comes increased genes sensitivity
There are two types of men when it comes to growing a beard, early bloomers and late bloomers. For early bloomers, they can grow a beard pretty early as compared to late bloomers.
A late bloomer may grow a beard but it will be patchy, as they age their genes becomes more sensitive to the beard-growing hormones hence the patchy beard will start filling in and becoming thicker.
A late bloomer may also have had some inactive facial follicles which become activated with age and hence help them grow a thicker and fuller beard.
As you age the androgen receptors, the sites where testosterone and DHT bind to stimulate beard growth, become more sensitive to androgens. As a result, you will experience increased beard growth as you age.
How to grow a thicker and fuller beard
Increase testosterone levels
The first step is to make sure that your levels of testosterone are at par. Low testosterone will only derail the growth of your beard.
Fortunately, you can boost your levels of testosterone by either eating foods that have been proven to increase testosterone or leading a lifestyle that will boost testosterone such as.
- Get enough sleep
- Avoid stress
- Alfalfa sprout
Increase the sensitivity androgen receptors
The sensitivity of your androgen receptors will determine the extent to which your beard grows.
There are several ways to increase the sensitivity of your androgen receptors to dihydrotestosterone.
Sensitive androgen receptors coupled with the right levels of beard growth hormones may even grow your thicker beard sooner than expected.
So how can you increase the sensitivity of your androgen receptors?
Following some of these tips will also increase your levels of testosterone.
- Resistance training
- Eat mucuna pruriens
- L Carnitine
- Vitamin D
- Intermittent fasting
Get enough sleep
It is recommended that a man should sleep for about 8 hours a day for them to get enough sleep. Lack of sleep has been proven to reduce the levels of testosterone in the body. Therefore, you must ensure that you are getting enough sleep and rest so as not to affect your testosterone levels.
Stress leads to the production of cortisol hormone, which has been known to reduce the levels of testosterone in the body. There are several techniques that you can use to reduce stress, such as working out or jogging.
Use derma roller and minoxidil/rogaine
A derma roller will stimulate blood flow into your face, increase collagen production in your face which stimulates beard growth.
You should derma roll about twice a week. And in case you want to grow a beard faster you can incorporate minoxidil. Minoxidil has been proven and even approved by the FDA to help regrow hair.
The scientific test has even confirmed it can grow beards to those who are struggling to grow one. Anecdotal evidence of before and after pictures of those who have used minoxidil shows it can actually work.
But still, there are a lot of controversies when it comes to growing a beard using minoxidil. On their website, they claim that hair grown using minoxidil is not permanent.
The site claims that you will lose your beard or hair grown using minoxidil once you discontinue its use.
Nonetheless, when you comb through the internet you will find anecdotal evidence of people who also claim that they did not lose their beard even after they stopped using minoxidil.
So my take is only to use minoxidil after all the other options have failed you.
Do you have to wait to grow old to grow a thicker beard?
Using products such as minoxidil has been proven to stimulate new beard growth even among men who cannot grow a beard naturally.
Combining minoxidil with natural oils such as castor oil, peppermint oil, olive oil, almond oil, grapeseed oil will help stimulate beard growth while argan, jojoba, coconut oil will help moisturize and groom your beard.
Keep away from oils that inhibit the activity of your beard growth hormones. These include pumpkin seed oil, tea tree oil, lavender oil, eucalyptus oil, rosemary oil, amla oil, which have been proven to inhibit the action of beard growth hormones. Some like tea trees and lavender were found to cause man boobs among young boys.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do beards fill in overtime? Yes, if you are a late bloomer beard should fill in overtime. As you age your androgen receptors (genes) become more sensitive to the beard-growing hormones.
Can every man grow a full beard? Naturally not every man can grow a beard as some men have very lowly sensitive beard-growing genes. However, under the minoxidil, most men can grow a beard.
Why is facial hair more prominent in older men than in young men? The reason older men can grow a more prominent beard as compared to young men is based on the sensitivity of their androgen receptors (genes) to facial hair growth hormones.
Patience is very important if you want to achieve the full potential of your beard. Beard is like wine it gets better with age, however, you can thicken your beard and fill in those patchy areas using minoxidil.