Does Minoxidil Work for Beard Growth?


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Remember when you noticed your first chin hair? You likely felt as if you’d grown from child to man overnight. 

But when that chin hair fails to materialize into an actual beard, it can be discouraging. We all know how much a full, thick beard screams “masculinity!”

Beards are like a built-in accessory for your face. Pair it with a flannel and jeans or a well-tailored suit, and you easily have an entire look. 

So, for those whose facial hair is lacking, minoxidil for beard growth can be game-changing. 

You probably know minoxidil can help grow the hair on your head, so read on to learn how it can help you sport a full, healthy beard. 

What Is Minoxidil?

Minoxidil is an FDA-approved hair growth medication. It was first introduced in the 1970s as a medication for hypertension (high blood pressure), but doctors noticed patients experienced “abnormal” hair growth while using it. 

As the tech bros would say, this bug became a feature and, as you might suspect, this is where the path to Rogaine began. 

A topical formula was created in 1987, and minoxidil began changing lives as a topical hair growth formula. Now you can find minoxidil “over the counter” (without a prescription in 2% and 5% strength solutions. 

Minoxidil is one of only two medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of androgenetic alopecia, or male pattern baldness. (The other medication is finasteride.)

So how does it work? Here’s the short and sweet explanation:

  • When minoxidil is applied to the skin, the enzyme sulfotransferase works to create minoxidil sulfate. 

  • This metabolite minoxidil sulfate is believed to be the key to minoxidil’s effectiveness in revving up your hair follicles. There are two different sulfotransferases responsible for this conversation, and people with higher activity of this enzyme experience better results than others.

  • Topical minoxidil is applied twice daily — how often you apply it, the concentration of the formula you use, and your attention to skincare can all play a role in absorption. 

While it’s not fully understood how minoxidil works, the medical community generally believes that it helps improve blood flow to the scalp — and with it, the nutrients hairs need to grow.

It’s important to note that minoxidil stops working if you stop taking it. 

(RelatedFinasteride & Minoxidil: The Most Effective Hair Loss Combo?)

Research on Minoxidil for Beard Growth

On average, across multiple studies, minoxidil increases hair density better than placebos, though the total volume of new hairs varies.

On the beard-specific question, there are limited data (more on that in a moment), but the little we have does seem to point to the same general findings about minoxidil: it’s effective.

Androgenic alopecia isn’t the only hair disorder minoxidil is used for. It’s also used off-label to treat other conditions like alopecia areata, chemotherapy-induced hair loss, telogen effluvium and eyebrow enhancement.

Research has also indicated more pronounced results with the 5% concentration over the 2% formula.  After 48 weeks in one study, men using the 5% concentration had 45% more hair regrowth than those who used the lower concentration.

Does Minoxidil Work For Beard Growth?

So, can minoxidil help you grow that face warmer you’re after? The answer is a resounding: probably. We mean, people use this stuff on their eyebrows, so like…?

There isn’t a ton of research on the use of minoxidil for facial hair growth, but there was one study published as a letter to the editor in a 2016 volume of The Journal of Dermatology

In it, researchers detailed their observations in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study of a 3% minoxidil formula among 48 men over a period of 16 weeks. 

Throughout the study, patients applied 0.5 ml of the formula (or a placebo) on the chin and jawline twice daily. The men’s results were then analyzed using photographs and hair counts every four weeks. 

After 16 weeks, the photograph scores were significantly different for the men using minoxidil, as were the changes in average hair count. Hair diameter was unchanged. 

That data is in keeping with what we’ve seen from other topical minoxidil studies — just a little lower on the head than the others.

Side Effects of Minoxidil for Beard Growth

You might be wondering whether braving these less-tested waters could lead to some weird side effects. Rest assured, using minoxidil on your beard instead of your scalp isn’t going to make you sprout a new arm or anything like that.

According to the above-mentioned study on minoxidil and beard growth, side effects among participants were “mild” and not considered significantly different from those experienced by the placebo group. 

The most common side effect of minoxidil use is skin irritation — including itching and scaling. You may also experience allergic reactions, as well as hair growth in areas where you didn’t apply minoxidil.

Applying a small amount of minoxidil to your skin as a patch test before going all-in is a good way to check whether you’ll experience an adverse reaction. 

It’s worth noting: Side effects are generally more common with the 5% formula compared to the 2% version (and we’d guess that the side effects of 3%, which was the formulation used in the beard study above, were somewhere in between). 

(RelatedDoes Topical Finasteride Work? What Should You Expect)

Other Beard Growing Treatment Options

If you’re trying to get your beard to wooly-mammoth-slash-lumberjack status, you may want to pull out every stop, and we get that.

There are a number of ways to promote better hair growth on your head, from biotin and other supplements to medications like finasteride. But just because something works on the hair of your head doesn’t mean it’ll work on your face. 

The best advice, it turns out, is preventative maintenance. After all, all of the following can lead to hair loss on your face or the rest of your body:

  • Stress

  • Lack of sleep

  • Poor nutrition

  • Poor diet

  • Serious illness

What we recommend is that you keep your beard clean and the skin beneath it washed. Consume a healthy, balanced diet with the correct nutritional balance and prioritize your rest each night. Make sure things like stress and illness don’t get out of hand (or beard). 

And if you’re seeing problems like patchy hair loss, sudden beard thinning or other unexplained issues, contact a healthcare provider.

The Final Word: Minoxidil Beard Results

Minoxidil is a topical solution used to treat a variety of hair loss disorders, and there is evidence it could encourage beard growth, too. If you’re trying to chart a path to a bushier beard, know this:

  • Yes, studies show that minoxidil can indeed improve beard growth.

  • In fact, one study found positive results among a small group of men using minoxidil on their face, twice daily for a period of 16 weeks. 

  • Careful though — side effects like skin irritation may be something to watch for if you have sensitive skin.

  • Remember: good health and a skincare routine can also support beard growth. This guide on “what does aftershave do” is a helpful start.

One final thing to remember about minoxidil and beard growth: it’s important to note that stopping treatment will likely result in a return to the baby face (or patchy beard hair) you had before treatment, so once you begin using minoxidil treatment, you’ll want to keep consistent.

If you’re ready to bring the patchwork together, though, consider talking to our healthcare support team today.

This article originally appeared on and was syndicated by

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Discover the Most Popular Hairstyles the Decade You Were Born

Discover the Most Popular Hairstyles the Decade You Were Born

There are so many things that define each decade, from the food we eat to the clothes we wear. But none of the things we’ve looked back on were quite as polarizing as the hairstyles. From piled-high funky styles to buzzed dos, here are the most popular hairstyles from the decade you were born, spanning from the 40s to the 2000s. 

Wikipedia / Mediafeed

Inspired by the glitz and glamour of Hollywood women at the time, the victory roll hairstyle featured tight curls pinned toward the face to frame it. Victory rolls were customizable, so you could opt for a single roll or different symmetrical or asymmetrical versions of dual rolls. 

Other popular hairstyles of the decade for women included tight curls, waves, and the pageboy. Women were also big on hair accessories, particularly the snood, which was essentially a crocheted bag used to cradle the hair and keep it in place. Both men and women sported the infamous pompadour during the ’40s. Men were also partial to quiffed hair or short curls and were also prone to just slicking their hair back.

Wikipedia / U.S. Army – Yank, the Army Weekly

Everyone knows the beehive hairstyle, whether you associate it with the ’50s or Amy Winehouse. All you had to do to be cool in the 1950s was pile your hair on top of your head in a conical shape to resemble a beehive. Lots of hairspray was needed for this one.

If your hair wasn’t long enough for the beehive, you might have sported other bouffant hairstyles, a poodle cut, an Italian cut, victory rolls, or even a pixie cut. Men were still into the slicked-back look along with side parts, the pompadour, or — if they were influenced by Elvis later in the decade — a Rockabilly do.

Wikipedia / Warner Bros.

Bouffant (derived from the French verb “bouffer,” which means to puff or fluff up) hair became popular during the 1950s, but dominated in the 1960s thanks to the iconic Jackie Kennedy sporting the style. The puffy, rounded hairdo was especially popular among housewives during the ’60s. 

Women also gravitated toward shorter hairstyles (influenced by Twiggy), including pixie cuts and flipped bobs and, for long hair, bangs. Men styled their hair with everything from the bowl cut and the ducktail cut to shag cuts and styles copying The Beatles.

Public Domain / Wikipedia

During the 1970s, the afro became a symbol of cultural and political expression, particularly within the African American community. The style pushed back against Eurocentric beauty standards and celebrated natural Black hair. Influenced by icons like Angela Davis and the Jackson 5, the afro surged in popularity, crossing racial and cultural boundaries to become a mainstream fashion statement. Its voluminous shape was achieved through techniques like picking, and its prominence spread among both men and women.

Separately, and inspired predominantly by Farrah Fawcett, long, feathered hair was also sought after during the ’70s. 

Wikipedia / GeorgeLouis at English Wikipedia

Whether it was crimped, curled, teased, spiked into a giant mohawk, or cut into a towering flattop, the most iconic ’80s dos could all be tied to one main group: big hair. During this decade, freedom of expression was fully embraced and displayed through hair. Styles like Jheri curls were popular thanks to Michael Jackson, and Billy Ray Cyrus spearheaded the popularity of the business in the front, party in the back mullet. The ’80s were eclectic times that reeked of Aqua Net and perms. 

Wikipedia / Allan Light

You didn’t even need to be a fan or viewer of “Friends” to ask your hairdresser to give you “The Rachel” in the ’90s. Everyone knew exactly which version of Jennifer Anniston’s hair you wanted. Layered, framed around the face, and shoulder-length was the style that ruled the decade. Chunky highlights, side bangs, and hair flipped out at the bottom were also wildly popular during the decade. And who could forget chopsticks carefully stuck into buns? All the rage. 

If you were a cool dude during the ’90s, you might have had frosted tips, spiky hair, or cornrows.


All you needed was a few bobby pins and some hairspray to make a pulled-back pouf happen, and every girl in the 2000s was on board. High ponytails and pigtails, choppy layers, and money-piece braids were a go-to as well. 

Skater boy hair/emo boy haircuts that swooped halfway across a guy’s face were also iconic during the 2000s. Who else remembers watching guys shake their heads in slow motion to get the hair out of their eyes like they were playing a role in the “Baywatch” intro? We shudder at the memory. On the opposite end of the spectrum, buzz cuts were prominent, along with faux hawks. 


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