How to Fix a Patchy Looking Beard

a man with a beard

A man with a beard | Source: iStock

Not only are beards in and loved by men and women alike, but growing a beard is one of the ultimate indicators of masculinity and manhood. Nobody else can grow a beard but a man, so it’s actually kind of special to do so. Picture this: You have decided that you’re ready to grow out your beard, you’ve never done it before and the prospect of it is very exciting: It’s going to change your look completely. You have always looked up to the bearded gods, thinking that your facial fur is sure to look like Billy Mays’s (bearded perfection). One day you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and see … patches. No one ever said that this would happen.

Unfortunately, my bearded friend, not all beards are created equal and some are more perfect than others. The way your hair color differs from someone else’s so too does your beard. If you find yourself on the splotchier end of the spectrum — fear not. If you’re on the younger side though, there is a chance that your facial hair growth may get better with age, and although there’s no magical fix for filling in the gaps of your beard hair, there are ways to work with what you have.

Let it grow

Give your beard a chance to flourish and don’t go straight for the razor after you see a patch pop up after a week or two of growth. Remember, your beard has great potential. Next time you feel the urge to shave your stubble at the first sign of a patch, consider letting your beard grow for a month. Yes, it will be hard, and, yes, it may be itchy, but you’ll never be able to reach your mug-rug potential than by leaving your face alone and giving it a chance to grow. Once you’ve let your follies spread their wings, then go ahead and assess the situation. Make sure while it’s growing to tidy up your neck and jawline. If you’re happy with the way it looks — congrats! You’re the official owner of a full beard. If not, and it’s still looking patchy…

Consider leaving it short

a man with a short beard

A man with a short beard | Source: iStock

So you grew it out and the patches are still a problem — not too worry. Simply try opting for a more refined five o’clock shadow: It’s shorter than a beard, but not quite stubble. Start by investing in a quality beard trimmer with an adjustable length setting. Try trimming your beard after a few days of growth, really focusing on shaping your jawline and cheeks — both should look nice and clean. The patches will now be less noticeable, and you’ll still be rocking a little bit of facial hair.

Brush it

Sounds a little strange, but if your facial hair tends to be unruly then give it a good brushing (or use a comb) to control the direction of growth. It’s not necessary to go all Marcia Brady on it and give it 100 strokes before bed but just enough to even things out and fill in the not-so-dense areas. Tip: Go against the grain for a fuller effect. Don’t forget to use conditioner, and avoid using shampoo that often — it may dry things out and leave it brittle. You need to treat your facial hair well because it’s just as important as the hair on your head.

Say no to supplements or a facial hair transplant

a man with a beard

A man with a beard | Source: iStock

Both are totally unnecessary. Additionally, the science behind most supplements are dicey, and the results inconsistent. That said, the most common supplement for hair growth is Biotin. It has been a go-to remedy for hair loss and guys hoping to fill out their beards. Biotin is found is found in foods such as eggs, carrots, and milk, so you’re better off focusing on maintaining a well-balanced diet to promote healthy beard growth.

Embrace it

It’s part of who you are, and the patchy look really isn’t so bad. If the whole package (meaning you) looks sharp, then a patchy beard can actually add a nice element of ruggedness, which is actually super sexy. Here are some celebrities who still look pretty damn good despite their patchy-ness.