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Why Does Facial Hair Grow So Quickly? Does It Really Grow Faster Than Other Hair?

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You shave every morning, but by the afternoon, you’re already starting to see your beard grow back. This can be a frustrating experience and may even lead to some discomfort down the line if you’re shaving your face too regularly. 

Why does facial hair grow so quickly?

The speed at which your facial hair grows is largely determined by your genetics, but your hormone levels and even ethnic background can have an influence as well. Facial hair growth is caused by androgens, and testosterone is the main androgen responsible for it. 

Additionally, the way that your hair follicles respond to testosterone can affect the rate of your growth. Let’s take a closer look at why your facial hair is growing back so quickly. 


Shaving – Does it Cause Quicker Growth?

You’ve likely heard that shaving can cause your hair to grow back quicker and thicker, but this is nothing more than a myth. Your follicles are programmed with your growth speed on a genetic level, and shaving will not change this speed. 

You’ve likely heard that shaving can cause your hair to grow back quicker and thicker, but this is nothing more than a myth.

When your hair starts growing, the end of the follicle makes it look darker, which makes it easier to notice the hair. Because you’re not taking out the whole hair from the root (as you would with epilation) you’ll still see the cut end of the hair.

People usually mistake this darker look as their hair growing quicker or thicker. However, your hair growth rate is determined by the time it takes your hair follicles to progress through the stages of growth. 

At any given time, 90% of your facial hair is in the anagen growth phase.


Why Does Facial Hair Grow So Quickly?

The color of your eyes, your hair, and even your experience with facial hair growth can be traced back to your genetics. Your genes have an influence on how sensitive your hair follicles are to hormones.

There are a number of specific reasons why your beard grows quickly. 

Ethnic background

This one may come as a bit of a surprise, but your ethnic background can actually influence the rate at which your facial hair grows. A study conducted in 2017 showed that 35% of black/African males, 35% of white/Caucasian males, 10% of Asian males, and 26% of Latino/Hispanic American males always wear a beard. 

The ease at which beard growth occurs for each of these ethnic backgrounds influences these trends.

Race has even been clinically proven amongst women to be a larger predictor of facial hair growth than skin pigmentation. 

Interestingly, Caucasians are the ethnicity whose hair is the densest, especially those of Mediterranean or Semitic descent. On the other hand, Asian men have the thinnest hair, and these findings correspond with the aforementioned study of men who wear beards full-time. 

Genetics

Your genetics are the primary factor that will determine your facial hair growth rate. A man’s father, as well as both grandfathers, will predict hair growth patterns. The Lxh2 gene has been proven to regulate hair growth. New findings like these may help us formulate intervention strategies where hair growth could be suppressed or accelerated. 

Every human is born with a specific number of hair follicles, with each follicle being independent of another.

All hairs must undergo four stages of growth – anagen, catagen, telogen, and exogen. Your genetic makeup will determine how quickly each hair progresses through this process. 

Hormones

Most men have normal levels of testosterone. Generally speaking, if you went through puberty and grew secondary hair around your body, your hormone levels are considered normal. As we mentioned earlier, testosterone is primarily responsible for facial hair growth. 

The ability of your follicles to make dihydrotestosterone from testosterone influences how quickly your hair grows. While there’s no denying that testosterone is certainly necessary for hair growth, the length of your beard is not a good predictor of testosterone dominance in a person.

But, if you find that your beard growth is fast and full, you likely have healthy levels of testosterone.


Is It Possible to Slow Facial Hair Growth?

While it’s not possible to change your genetics (yet), it is possible to slow the rate at which your beard grows. Using topical hair products and ruling out medical concerns may slow down the speed at which your facial hair grows. 

Beard lovers enjoy facial hair that grows thick and fast, while clean-shaven men strive for ways to reduce the growth rate and cut down their shaving frequency.

On average, a beard grows about 0.27mm each day, or around half an inch each month. This is, of course, just an average, and the exact rate will vary depending on the person. 

And interestingly other hair on the face like the eyebrows stop growing when they reach a certain length.

On average, a beard grows about 0.27mm each day, or around half an inch each month. This is, of course, just an average, and the exact rate will vary depending on the person. 


Shaving Over Scars

If you have a scar in your beard area, then it’s natural to wonder if you would be able to shave over it safely. Before you do, take a closer look to see if you would be able to without hurting yourself. If you find that the scar is quite old and flat, then you’ll be in no danger when shaving, provided you do so with a little extra caution. 

However, if your scar is fresher or you have any raised scar tissue, you will need to be extra careful. You can easily cut yourself when shaving over this sort of scar. While it is safer to shave over a flatter, older scar, you still need to be careful.

No matter where your scar is located, the key to a safe shave is to use plenty of shaving cream. You should also be as gentle as you can when shaving over that area, using very light strokes with hardly any pressure.

The same goes for areas without scars – using as little pressure as possible will ensure that you do not irritate your skin and cause some nasty razor burn. 

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