Growing a beard goes way beyond knowing what products you use and your shaving techniques. Going back to the roots and understanding the specific beard growth stages is where you will genuinely appreciate your beard-growing journey.
Learning about the stages of beard growth will allow you to get to know your facial locks further. And, it might even be the secret to giving you that Vikings look you have always dreamed of.
So, here is everything you need to know about growing beards—from root to tips.
- Hair Growth Cycle
- Different Stages of Beard Growth
- Beard Care Tips
Hair Growth Cycle
Not everyone can grow a mane on their face, and you have got genes, ethnicity, and hormones to blame for that. Sometimes, age also comes into play when it comes to slow beard growth.
Women and youngsters do not get beards because they lack an adequate amount of testosterone, the hormone that is accountable for most men’s gusto features, in their system. You may not be growing one too because maybe it is just in your blood—ask your male relatives.
Now that we got that out of the way let us talk about what matters: the different beard growth stages. Where does it begin, and how does each stage look and feel?
Hair grows in four stages, and since your beard are also hair, it follows the same routine, which is the following:
Anagen (Growing Phase)
Beard growth starts under the skin during the anagen or growing phase. It is when the hair is the most active and when the cells in the roots break down, creating new hair, which pushes the old dead one out of the way.
During this phase, the hair grows around 1cm or almost half an inch every 28 days continuously for 3-4 years, even when shaving it. For beards, they grow around 0.27mm every 24 hours, hence why you get a 5 o’clock shadow even if you shaved your face clean in the morning.
Do note that the anagen phase is different for every area in the body. Your facial locks may not be growing as fast as the hair on your head because it simply has a shorter anagen phase.
Catagen (Transition Phase)
Eventually, the growing stage phases out, and that is when your beard goes through the catagen or transition phase, which only lasts two to three weeks. It is when your hair learns to become independent and prepares itself to dislodge from the roots and the blood supply. As a result, the hair follicles shrink, and the growth of hair slows down, forming the club hair, or the hair that gets pushed out during the anagen phase.
Telogen (Resting Phase)
When the club hair reaches its prime and complete form, your beard is now in the telogen or resting phase. It patiently sits and chills on your face until the hairs in the early stages of the anagen phase finish doing their thing and push it out.
There is no significant activity happening to your hair during this stage. The hair does not also fall off from the skin—it is just there. If you have a habit of plucking or pulling random strands of hair or beard, you may notice that sometimes there is a solid, hard, dry material on the roots. That is your cue that your hair is in the resting phase.
Exogen (Shedding Phase)
For some experts, the hair growth cycle ends in the telogen phase. But those who beg to differ adds another stage to the list: the exogen or shedding phase.
This stage is technically an extension of the telogen phase. Some hairs fall off during the telogen phase without any assistance. Hence the random hair falls here and there. On the other hand, in the exogen phase, the hair sheds off, which you can notice significantly when you are brushing your hair or beard.
Different Stages of Beard Growth
On a more physical note, the beard growth stages begin from the 5 o’clock shadow to the full-length beard. Let us break down each stage, shall we?
Shaving only cuts off the top end of the hair of your beard, which is most likely in the catagen phase. Hence, the remaining hair continues to grow, and that is why you get a very faint stubble in the middle of the day. You will not feel or see much of a difference during this time as the growth is too subtle to notice.
The Itchy Stubble
After a few days, the shadow will turn into stubble, which is the hair on your face when it is around 3mm to 10mm. This stage can be pretty uncomfortable, and the growth is patchy. Remember, when you shave, you are cutting the hair at an angle. The tips become sharp, which causes itchiness when it starts to push out of your skin.
When your stubble exceeds the 10mm mark and enters the 1-inch mark after four to six weeks, then you are already in the middle of your beard-growing journey. During this time, you can take precise notes on where and how your beard grows and where the patches begin to fill in. It will still look a bit awkward, but you are getting nearer to your goal.This stage is when you should take care of your beard the most. Do not trim it, but also do not let it grow unattended. Instead, nourish it, follow a healthy lifestyle, and take care of it by following the beard tips we will share with you later.
After a few months and with proper beard care, congratulations! You now have a full beard! It may be far from the Viking length you wished to achieve, but yes, you have a beard!
It is the fun stage, where you get to tame your mane—trim it, style it, color it, do whatever you want. But while you enjoy your frolicky luscious locks, make sure that you trim it once in a while to keep the dead and split ends from killing off the strands.
Beard Care Tips
When was your last shave? If you still remember it, you will figure out which beard growth stage your hair is at, and you can efficiently take care of it to achieve a fuller and healthier beard.
Taking Care of Stubbles
If you are still at the shadow and stubble stage, the best way is to keep the shaved area well moisturized and clean. You can use an astringent and apply an aftershave balm afterward.
The astringent or toner helps keep the surface clean, preventing bacteria from blocking beard growth, which may cause in-grown and razor bumps. The aftershave balm will ensure that the skin is well-moisturized and nourished, soothing the skin and calming down any itchiness.
Beard Oils for Growth
Those already enjoying a bit of growth and are in the beginning stage can apply essential oils to help with slow-growing beards. One popular beard growth oil is castor oil, notorious for its benefits in stimulating hair growth.
In an interview with In Style, Dr. DiAnne Davis, a Board-certified Cosmetic Dermatologist in Dallas, explains that castor oil’s distinct fatty acid ricinoleic acid is the key to the oil’s hair-growing benefits. Castor oil, according to Davis, increases blood vessel dilation, and “when this happens on the scalp, increased blood vessel dilation will increase blood flow to the hair follicles.” And more blood means more nutrients flowing through.
Trimming and Styling
When your beard is already long enough to play with, do not style it just yet. Trim it first, then proceed to have your fun.
The anagen phase is long, but the ends of your hair tend to get damaged. Beard hair is prone to split ends and breakage because it constantly gets wet, and hair is most vulnerable when it is drenched in water. So, do not let your split ends call it quits to the healthier bits near the roots, trim it off and keep your beard healthy.
Do not let months of waiting go down the drain quickly because you cannot take care of your facial mane.
Get the best beard care essentials from us here at Naked Armor. Our straight razor kits have the sharpest edge and excellent blade-to-handle weight ratio for the closest shave possible and easy beard trimming. For the ultimate beard grooming and care package, our Grizzly Beard Kit is the perfect partner for you wherever you are on your beard growing journey.
It has a reliable shavette straight razor for a comfortable shaving experience, organic hemp and argan beard oil to nourish your hair and skin, and more essentials that will help you achieve your beard goals effortlessly.
Shop the essentials below.
More Naked Armor Reads: