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Myth or Fact: Does Shaving Make Facial Hair Grow Faster?

In short – no.

Shaving your facial hair or any part of your body, for that matter, will not make it grow back faster.

The reason for this misconception is likely rooted in puberty.  When young men begin to shave, new facial hair is continually sprouting up, giving the appearance that it’s growing quicker and thicker than before shaving.

There are other, albeit minor, parts of the grooming process that may impact the appearance of beard growth:

1. The Type of Razor Can Appear to Impact Beard Growth

There are four main types of razor categories:

  1. Cartridge razors
  2. Safety razors
  3. Straight razors / shavettes
  4. Electric shavers

Safety razors, straight razors, and electric shavers are only capable of cutting down to skin level.  A noticeable grit or stubble will develop either later in the day or within 24 hours.

Cartridge razors like those from Gillette and Schick rely on multiple razor blades.  When passed along the skin’s surface, they experience the hysteresis phenomenon, also known as lift-and-cut.

The hysteresis phenomenon cuts facial hair just a fraction below the surface of the skin.  As a byproduct of this mechanical difference, cartridge razors may appear to impact beard growth rate (but not really).  

Instead, it’s just that the tip of the facial hair is now beneath the surface of the skin.  This adds a bit more time before a visible stubble begins to appear.

2. Does Diet and Exercise Impact Beard Growth?

Disclosure: I am not a doctor.  If you have medical-related questions, speak with your family physician.

If you are a healthy adult, your lifestyle will likely not have a measurable impact on beard growth.  Malnourishment or an inactive lifestyle will likely have some effect on beard growth – what exactly?  I don’t know.  

Again, I am not a doctor, so please take any questions to your family physician.

3. Beard Pills are a Thing

Many beard pills are just repackaged multivitamins.  Companies of these pills often load up extra on Biotin (Vitamin B7).  

Per the Consumer Fact Sheet published by the National Institutes of Health (NIH):

Most people get enough biotin from the foods they eat.

Additionally, per the FDA, excess intake of Biotin may interfere with lab tests. 

Ultimately, if you regularly consume meat, fish, eggs, seeds, nuts, and certain vegetables, you are likely getting enough Biotin in your diet to offset any benefits that a supplement would provide.

4. Minoxidil

The active ingredient in Rogaine, minoxidil, is one of the few proven topical solutions to help regrow hair in some men.  Minoxidil is intended for scalp application only.  

While we are not recommending this, some men do apply minoxidil to their facial hair.  But not necessarily to accelerate beard growth.  Instead, minoxidil is often used to help fill in areas of patchiness.

Side effects of minoxidil are serious.  Consult your doctor before using.

5. Beard Growth Rate

On average, facial hair grows at a rate of anywhere between 0.33″ and 0.5″ per month.  That’s approximately 4″ to 6″ per year.  Below is a table, by month, that provides a granular breakdown for reference:

MonthSlow GrowthFast GrowthAverage Growth

Don’t Forget Proper Beard Care

Are you growing a beard?  Then your beard should be conditioned and styled appropriately.

Beard conditioners such as beard oil and beard balm help prevent beard itch.  Additionally, these natural conditioners will help to make your beard feel measurably softer as well.

For recommendations, consider reading our in-depth guide where we compare and review the best beard oils and beard balms.   

Additionally, you will also want to use a beard comb or beard brush when it comes to styling. 

Sean Miller

As co-founder of Tools of Men, Sean Miller has nearly a decade of experience in male beard and grooming care. He started the site in 2014 after discovering the lack of quality men’s grooming information online. He is a nationally recognized expert in hair, beard and skin care for men, and has been featured in publications such as the Wall Street Journal, Vice, and more. He is also a frequent contributor to various online and print publications.

Sean Miller has dedicated his career to helping men understand the basics and fine details of proper grooming. He's traveled the world, testing products and learning from industry insiders to gain the knowledge he shares on Tools of Men. With a special focus on the trends, technology and products specifically designed for men he provides an educated, honest and informed perspective.

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