A patchy beard isn’t a particularly glam look. And despite the tons of effort one puts into grooming, it still appears disheveled, wiry, and asymmetric. This defies the whole point of growing a beard.
There are a bunch of myths and hypotheses around the real reasons behind having a patchy beard. This goes from spicey foods to testosterone levels. The latter gets the most attention though, so that’s what we’ll address here.
Generally speaking, a patchy beard doesn’t automatically mean low testosterone. That’s because the male hormone, testosterone, is primarily responsible for activating beard growth. The heaviness, hair quality, and symmetry of a beard are affected by the follicles’ sensitivity to dihydrotestosterone.
If you were wondering does a patchy beard mean low testosterone, you’re in good company. Read on to the very end to make sure you know all about the causes and best remedies.
Is Being Low on Testosterone the Cause of a Patchy Beard?
Testosterone is the hormone known for controlling manly features, depth of voice, muscle mass, and even having a hot temper. It’s thus understandable why most people consider it the one and only biochemical substance responsible for beard quality.
When it comes to beard patches, the role of testosterone is actually rather limited. Around early teens, boys start noticing that their testicles start growing. This is the factory that makes testosterone and pumps it to the bloodstream. From that point on, puberty starts.
Testosterone signals to the body what it needs to do over the coming few years to reach full manhood. Primary and secondary changes keep on developing and teens get excited with every one of them. This includes getting facial hair, and a lot of boys can’t wait to get a full beard.
The role of testosterone in growing a beard ends at the point of activation. What happens after that depends entirely on the sensitivity of the beard hair follicles to dihydrotestosterone. This is a hormone that’s derived from testosterone, and it addresses the matters of beard hair in a much more hands-on way.
Thus, a person could be swimming in testosterone, but unless his beard hairs have the right aptitude, patches would abound. Alternatively, extremely low testosterone would keep the beard from growing altogether, not just cause a few patches.
We mentioned that hereditary factors play the most important part here. But there are other factors as well that get into the mix. Additionally, there are some corrective measures to decrease beard patchiness.
High testosterone levels usually don’t correlate with how a guy’s beard turns out. Then what really determines the follicle sensitivity to dihydrotestosterone?
So What Are the Real Causes of a Patchy Beard?
The actual pattern of a beard, including whether or not it has patches, depends mainly on genetic factors. But there are a bunch of secondary factors that play a noticeable part too.
Hereditary Factors Are the Main Cause
Most often, a young man can predict how his beard would look like by observing the older men in his family. Fathers have the highest probability followed by uncles and grandparents.
Interestingly, not all siblings would end up with the same beard quality. It’s just a genetic probability like eye color, height, and dexterity with a basketball. However, there’s a good chance that the younger boys would follow their big brother’s appearance.
It’s worth noting that any person is the sum of his father’s and mother’s genes. And even though mothers don’t have beards, their fathers and brothers do. And that side of the family might have the biggest contribution.
Dominant and recessive characteristics could come down from as far back as the seventh grandparent. This could make for some interesting surprises in terms of beard color, pattern, texture, and richness.
Lifestyle Plays a Significant Part too
There’s a fascinating side to genetics that not too many people are aware of, and that is epigenetics. In simple terms, it means that a person could have the propensity for becoming tall, yet end up shorter than the set mark.
This is often due to lifestyle and environmental factors. Malnutrition, exhaustion, and constant stress could slow down the secretion of growth hormone, which would ultimately affect this guy’s height.
There’s some plasticity during the time from childhood to puberty to fix that by adopting healthier habits. The window slowly closes up post-puberty till mid
Age Definitely Matters
The time from puberty to adulthood is quite eventful, as the masculine body doesn’t take full shape overnight. That’s why a high school photograph could be drastically different from a college graduation one.
This is usually good news for all these 16 and eighteen-year-old guys who aren’t too happy with their flimsy beards. There’s still plenty of hope for them to get a thicker beard as they go deeper into their twenties.
After 25 things tend to slow down a little, and a patchy beard might not fill up on its own accord as easily as in the previous years. There’s still some hope though through adopting healthy lifestyle changes.
Long Term Remedies to Get a Fuller Beard
A patchy beard isn’t necessarily a final situation. There are some remedies that could fill up the flimsy patches a bit to get a more symmetric look.
These fixes work best around the late teens and early twenties. But they can still show some improvement past that stage.
- Proper nutrition helps the body to perform at optimal levels, so eat well. This is also essential to synthesize and metabolize various hormones. Among them, the ones responsible for growing a heavy beard.
- Get enough sleep, as this is one of the best energizers of the whole body. Rest is also necessary for the proper functioning of every organ and biological system.
- Try to stay consistent with sports and exercise. The best cues of wellness come after a good workout. And this is when the body decides to level up and look its best.
- Adopt a daily skincare routine to keep the hairs of the beard well taken care of. These follicles require proper hygiene, a healthy blood supply, and regular stimulation to stay viable. Cosmetics containing hyaluronic acid are known to be beneficial.
- Steer clear from stressful situations. Anger, fear, anxiety, exhaustion, and non-stop worrying are surefire ways to lose hair. Mental wellness is an integral part of a healthy lifestyle, so find the best way to control stress.
Short Term Fixes to Fill Up a Patchy Beard
The previous advice is all great, and these tips will reflect brilliantly on every aspect of your life, in addition to your beard. However, they take some time to show encouraging results.
In case you’d like a good look tonight or tomorrow, here are some clever tricks.
1. Trim your beard down to a stubble. You can adjust that to be barely there, all the way to a heavy stubble. This is as attractive as keeping a heavy beard.
2. Try a goatee for a while, usually, this is a brilliant alternative.
3. Style your beard in a way that makes the best use of the heavy parts and discounts the patchy parts entirely. This is especially easy when the patches are nearer to the cheekbones.
4. There are various cosmetics that fill up the patchy parts of the beard. This technique is similar to microblading, which is heavily used in grooming eyebrows.
5. Consider getting a beard transplant.
Many folks believe that a patchy beard automatically means low testosterone. This couldn’t be further from the truth, as testosterone only activates the onset of beard growth.
The main determinant of a beard’s heaviness is how far the hair follicles are sensitive to another hormone, which is dihydrotestosterone. This is a trait that’s controlled primarily by heredity, but lifestyle factors can contribute to some extent.
A related issue is when your mustache has a gap, but that too can be remedied, we’ve got your back!