Growing a full beard takes a lot of time and effort, but the results are extremely satisfying. However, if your beard stops growing, this can be disconcerting, especially if your beard is nowhere near where you want it to be.
If this is the case, try not to worry too much. Beard growth has several phases. In most cases, any growth stalls will cease and your beard will start growing again. You can encourage this growth process with a few lifestyle changes.
We’ll cover tips on how to get your beard to grow again in this article. You’ll also find information on the hair growth cycle and how fast beards grow.
Genetics and family history can impact your beard growth, but you can still try these changes and see if they improve your beard growth rate.
How Do Beards Grow?
Before a hair reaches its full length, also known as its terminal length, it has gone through a full growth cycle. Once a hair reaches its full length, it can then fall out and be replaced.
The hairs on our body go through this, no matter where they are located. However, different types of hair have various terminal lengths.
For instance, arm, leg, and chest hair won’t reach the same length as the hairs on your head. Once the hairs on your arm grow half an inch long, they will fall out and be replaced with another hair.
The hairs on your beard and head will reach longer lengths, but they’ll also be more resilient and stronger.
The Hair Growth Cycle
The hair life cycle isn’t measured in length, but it is thought of as different periods. Terminal length is judged by how long a hair has been growing for, not how long it is.
This is important because a lot of hairs haven’t stopped growing, but they may have broken off. We’ll get into more detail about the hair life cycle below.
The hair life cycle lasts between 2 to 6 years. A hair follicle surrounds the root of the hair to anchor it into the skin. This follicle isn’t affected if the hair is cut, so it will continue to grow no matter what its length is.
There are 3 phases within the hair growth cycle. The first is the Anagen stage, the second is the Catagen stage, and the last phase is the Telogen stage.
Hairs will grow through all of these stages, stopping only when they run out of energy. Once they cease growing, the follicle becomes smaller and the hair falls out. A new follicle is made and the cycle begins again.
Your beard hairs don’t have a length limit, but they may have a longer or shorter hair growth cycle. Taking the time to understand this cycle can help your beard hairs reach their full potential.
This stage is the active part of the cycle where the hairs grow. Most of your hair will be in this stage. During this time, the hair follicle fixes itself into the skin and starts growing.
The Anagen phase takes the longest within the cycle, lasting anywhere from 2 to 6 years. This time depends on your genetics. Some people’s Anagen stage will be longer, while others will be shorter.
When hair becomes longer, it needs nutrients and vitamins to be strong. Without these, the hair will become weaker. Products like conditioner and beard oil can help the hair grow stronger, but they can also maintain hairs that have already grown.
This stage falls after the growth phase, but before the hair falls out. At this point, the hair has reached its maximum length, but it will remain in place for a while.
Your hair has been growing for years, so naturally, it will need to rest. As the hair rests, the follicle becomes smaller. The hairs remain in the Catagen stage for 2 to 3 weeks before they go through the final stage.
After the hair follicle becomes smaller during the Catagen stage, the hair can break free from your skin and fall out. This stage is called the Telogen stage. It lasts for a few weeks until new hair replaces the lost hair.
Once the new hair begins to grow, the cycle starts again with the Anagen stage. The hairs will grow, lay dormant, and fall out for another 2 to 6 years, continuing the cycle.
What About Beards?
Beard hairs follow the hair growth cycle like any other hairs on your body. However, facial hair does have some specific characteristics. Hair on your head has one terminal length, but beard hair has different maximum lengths depending on where it grows.
Hairs on the mustache area have the shortest hair length, ranging from 2-3 inches long. Hairs on the neck and jawline have the greatest terminal hair length, while hairs on the chin and cheeks lie in between.
Depending on your genetics, the hair on your neck and jawline may never reach its full length. You may not be able to change your genetics, but you can implement some lifestyle changes that may help.
Terminal length can vary based on your lifestyle and environment. Some of these factors can slow down beard hair growth, or stop growth completely.
This can be worrying, but the good news is that once you identify some of these factors, you can make changes to fix them.
The easiest way to improve your facial hair is to keep the beard hairs healthy. Unhealthy hair is weak, so it can break off easier than healthier hair.
If it looks like your beard has stopped growing, your hair may have broken off instead, stopping your facial hair from reaching terminal length.
How Quickly Does Facial Hair Grow?
If you’re looking to improve the look of your facial hair, you need to understand how fast beard hair grows.
In most cases, beard and scalp hair tends to grow half an inch every month. Most men grow 6 inches of facial hair each year, but this varies with every different person.
If you notice that your beard is growing, but the hairs are quite thin, you’ll need to look at your beard care and maintenance regime instead.
Lifestyle Tips For Faster Beard Growth
A lot of seemingly pointless steps and methods can have an impact on the way your beard looks. This normally includes your general health, as your beard is a great indicator of your wellbeing.
If you live a healthy lifestyle, you’ll grow healthier hair, improving your beard’s appearance. If you’re not consuming enough vitamins and minerals, your beard may reflect that you need to look at your nutrition.
Your Diet Plan
Other than genetics, your diet is a huge factor that affects the way your beard looks. The majority of vitamins and minerals come from the foods we eat. If you’re lacking in a certain nutrient, including it in your diet may make a difference to your facial hair.
Hair is keratin, a type of protein that also makes up your skin and nails. If you lack vitamins and proteins, your hair will be thinner. A healthy hair growth diet plan prioritizes protein, but it also needs Vitamins A, B, C, and E.
You can take a multivitamin to do this, but if you want to go the extra mile, try taking Biotin supplements. Both vitamins and Biotin are included in several hair growth supplements.
Biotin (vitamin B7) increases keratin production, which encourages new hair follicles to grow.
If your body is healthy, your facial hair will follow suit. Regular exercise is necessary to keep healthy. You’ll feel amazing thanks to all of the endorphins, but your beard may also see a difference.
Exercise affects several things, like hormones, aging, and blood circulation. Hormones dictate how well your hair grows.
Many people notice that their hair grows quicker in summer, as heat and the sun encourages hormone production.
Blood circulation also matters as greater blood flow energizes the Anagen stage of the hair growth cycle. Exercise improves blood flow, which will increase the amount of blood that travels to your hair follicles.
Decreasing stress isn’t the easiest thing to do, but lowering stress levels can improve your health. High stress is linked with heart disease and breathing difficulties, but it can also prevent your hair from growing as much.
You can try to manage your stress by making sure you’re sleeping rough. Tiredness and exhaustion can all increase your stress levels.
If getting more sleep isn’t an option, make sure you’re keeping hydrated and eating well. Good nutrition will do wonders for your well-being and may help you manage stress better.
Beard Care Tips For Faster Beard Growth
You can try the lifestyle changes above, but a beard care regimen is an even simpler addition to your routine. Beard care can prevent your facial hair from snapping off, keeping it soft and well maintained as a result.
Preventing Hair Breakage
Dry and thin beard hair isn’t strong, so it’s more prone to breaking off. This can give the appearance that your beard isn’t growing anymore.
Your facial hair may not have stopped growing in the first place, as the hairs may keep snapping off.
Over Processed Hair and Shampoo
Beard hair becomes dry when it’s processed too much. Over processed hair is normally the result of too much shampoo, or using the wrong type of shampoo.
Shampoo cleans by cleaning dirt and oil off of the hair. These oils keep the hair healthy. Conditioner can replace some of the lost moisture, but not all of it.
Beard hair is normally drier than the hair on your head, so you need to use specialized facial hair shampoo. Make sure that you don’t shampoo more than a few times each week.
If you style your beard, keep in mind that heat from blow dryers and straightening irons can be very damaging. If you must, use a lower heat setting and take regular heat breaks.
A good purchase for damaged facial hair is beard oils and balms. These are stronger products that can nourish the hair. Look out for the word ‘repair’ on the label.
These oils will keep both your hair and skin moisturized, giving your beard a better environment to grow.
Use The Right Combs
Lastly, you need to take a look at your beard comb. Low-quality combs can damage your facial hair.
Cheap plastic combs aren’t smooth all over and can break easily. Your hairs can get trapped in the dents and break off.
Metal and wooden combs aren’t a better choice, as metal is too rough for your skin and hair. Wooden combs are porous, so they’ll pull natural oils from your hair into the comb.
Other than drying out your hair, wooden combs can decompose easily, releasing splinters that can further damage your hair.
Look for beard combs made out of high-quality plastic. Brands like Kent and Parker are known for their beard care products.
These may cost a little more than usual, but they’ll pay for themselves after a while. They’ll last longer than lower-quality tools and won’t damage your facial hair.
If you feel like your beard has stopped growing, you can try a few things to increase hair growth. The hair growth cycle is measured in time, not length.
If you can prolong the growth phase and stop your hair from breaking off, you should see a difference in the way your beard looks.