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

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In short – no.

Shaving your facial hair (i.e. beard) or any part of your body for that matter will not make it grow back faster.

There is nothing proven scientifically or otherwise that has claimed that when a razor meets your skin does your hair automatically sprout up at a quicker rate.

Now there are a few reasons why people might think that this is the case to begin with:

When you do grow body hair, it will naturally shed a few hairs while in the growth phase.

In fact your hair goes through four very distinct phases:

  1. Anagen (growing phase)
  2. Catagen (regression phase)
  3. Telogen (resting phase)
  4. Exogen (shedding phase)

When you are a teenager, your beard is heavily in the anagen phase when it starts to come in.  Therefore with regular shaving, you may notice more and more hairs are sprouting up.

Its not actually the shaving that is causing the growth, its just now that your body has started to enter the prime growth phase due uptick of testosterone in your body and with your androgenic hair (i.e. body hair) starting finally grow.

Therefore in a relatively short time frame, your beard will seem like it grows in rather rapidly, but in actuality its just that body hair is starting to take form.

If you think about it logically, if men who shaved daily had beards that grew in quicker, would have substantial beard growth by midday.  While of course that would be pretty sweet, it just physically doesn’t happen that way.

In addition, we would never have bald men…ever.

Secondly, hair follicles themselves can be in any one of the four stages that we outlined above.

When you shave your beard, you are effectively normalizing all the hair follicles to just one length and when looking at your beard that is only a couple of days old it may appear thicker.

With the natural shedding and thinning of your beard that occurs during the exogen phase, when looking at a fresh shaved face, your beard will look more concentrated together.

Your Diet and Exercise Can Make An Impact On beard Growth As Well

exercise man

Now of course there are so called ‘magic pills’ that claim to make your beard sprout up quicker (more on this in a minute), the largest impact that you can possibly have on beard growth is going to be from your diet.

Hair follicles (and nails for that manner) outer layer is largely comprised of keratin.  Protein consumption can have a large impact on strengthening, building, and restoring the luster of your facial hair itself.

If you are shaving and notice that facial hair is indeed growing quicker, it may be due to a recent uptick in protein intake in your diet.

This includes increased consumption in foods like nuts, meats, eggs, fish, nuts etc. to just name a few.

Other the other hand, regular exercise helps to increase blood flow which may have an impact on your facial hair growth rate.  Same goes if you have plenty of rest each night.

Are You Taking a Multi Vitamin?  If so, read on:

vitamin and mineral supplements

One of the most common vitamins used to help spur on beard growth is Biotin.

Biotin is a B complex vitamin where it was found to have an impact when it comes to hair growth.  In fact there was a recent study that stated that a subject who was deficient in this B complex vitamin suffered from complete hair loss.

This is likely the reason why Biotin is one of the most common products found in beard growth supplements in the marketplace.

Here’s the kicker:

Many men likely reading this are probably wondering why this is even brought up to begin with, right?

I mean if you aren’t taking a vitamin specifically designed for beard growth daily, then you probably aren’t shaving your facial hair.

That of course would be true in most instances, however when looking at the side of any of the popular multi vitamins on the market, more often than not you will see biotin included as one of the many vitamins included in each capsule.

Therefore this could in fact be the reason for the sudden pronounced beard growth.

Now, of course, multi vitamins aside.  As we covered above there foods that are rich in protein will make facial hair grow faster.  One food in particular that is packed with biotin specifically is eggs.  In fact one egg contains about 8.00 mcg of biotin, which equates to about 27% of your daily value.  The only other food that has more biotin per gram is almonds (14.72 mcg per 1/2 cup or about 49% of your daily value).

The Type Of Razor Can Have An Impact On The Rate of Which Your Facial Hair Grows

razor blades for de razor

In the ever changing world of razors, there are a plethora of options out there.

However, the technique that you employ to shave your facial hair on a regular basis and the tool you use can alter the rate of which it grows.

Of course it doesn’t impact on the overall growth of your facial hair, but depending how low the hair is cut beneath your skin will determine if you need to shave daily or perhaps even every other day.

If you are using some of the best cartridge razors on the market that help to not only cut your facial hair effectively, but also actually pulls it up slightly and then cuts it with their multi-blade design, then your facial hair will likely feel that it takes longer to grow in.

You see when you use an electric razor the blades themselves just simply can’t match the level of closeness that a razor can provide.

If you want to have an extremely close shave with an electric then you will want to do a ‘wet’ (i.e. use shaving cream) with a foil based electric razor head.  Rotary heads employ a circular cutting motion that just simply can’t get to the same level as a the oscillating design of a foil head.

Now there are plenty of men who go the more traditional route and use a double edge safety razor.  These razors, on their initial pass, can cut down your facial hair significantly, however, plenty of men may make three passes of which will get the desired baby butt smooth shave.

So if you are guy that uses one of the best cartridge razors or one that makes several passes with a top rated double edge safety razor, it may appear in some instances that facial hair will take longer to grow in – this is simply due to the fact that they can cut the hair follicle even deeper (i.e. it will take longer before it becomes visible with the naked eye on the surface of the skin).

What Is The Typical Rate of Which Your Facial Hair Grows?

before and after beard oil and trimming

Generally speaking should you have a balanced diet along with plenty of rest and exercise, you should be growing a beard at about one centimeter a month.

Therefore if you are growing a yeard (beard for a year) you will be somewhere around 4.75″ in a single year.


Beyond Facial Hair Growth – If You Are Growing A Beard You Need To Maintain It Properly

beardruff is annoying

While we won’t go on too long about this subject, if you are seriously thinking about growing a beard you need to know how to actually maintain it properly.

Way to often I come in contact with men who complain that their beard is simply too itchy and is just downright uncomfortable and they don’t know what else to do other than to shave it completely off.

For those men looking to grow a beard, the single most important thing that you need to do is to condition it properly.

You may have heard of products like beard oil or balm, here is a quick primer on what they actually do:

A common misconception is that a beard oil or balm will actually make your beard grow faster.

To date we haven’t seen a oil do as much.  However should we see this pop up in the marketplace we will be the first to share.

Beard oil and balms contain conditioning agents like carrier oils and butters.

Carrier oils are a natural way to moisturize your skin to keep it well nourished.  It also is incredibly effective at hydrating your beard so you don’t have any of that pesky beard itch as it grows in.

For a complete review on the best beard oils, click here.

Balms are a bit more intensive and include also beeswax which acts as a natural skin protectant.

Generally speaking we always tend to recommend balms for men who live in more extreme environments where the air tends to run a bit more on the dryer side (i.e. northern states in winter or dry desert states).

For a complete review on the top beard balms, click here.

Beard shampoos also do a terrific job at keeping your beard in tact between showers.  With its focus on natural ingredients a beard shampoo is a natural compliment to your skins sebum oil that is produced by the sebaceous glands.

Beard Gains From Beard Growth Products

Now if you are looking to accelerate your beard growth or perhaps are looking to fill in a patchy area, there are options out there that are definitely worth considering.

By and far one of the most popular products that men like to use to fill in a patchy area of their face is minoxidil.  Minoxidil is the active ingredient found in Rogaine and has seen a resurgence with men applying it to their face.

While of course results may vary, but it might be an option worth exploring.

Of course as we outlined above, diet will make a huge impact on your general health and of course hair growth.  So if you aren’t already eating healthy, then this might be the lowest hanging fruit worth considering.

Lastly of course is vitamins that contain biotin.  Again, very much like using minoxidil, its a ‘your mileage may vary’ scenario.

For all ways to grow facial hair quicker, be sure to check out our in-depth guide where we compare the most popular beard growth products on the market today.

About Shawn Burns

Shawn Burns is the founder and senior editor of Tools of Men. He started this site with the goal of teaching men proper grooming habits and sensible style. Shawn's expertise includes in-depth product reviews and how-to articles. Shawn was recently featured in the Wall Street Journal for his expertise.

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