The Patchy Beard Guide For Fuller-Looking Facial Hair 

By  Emily Konatella

LAST UPDATED - December 11, 2023

While every man dreams of having a thick, luscious, full beard, not everyone can achieve it. Some grow thicker hair, others experience thinning hair, all of which are totally natural. And there's no need to be embarrassed if your facial hair isn't always up to par. In this patchy beard guide, we're breaking down everything you need to know to successfully groom, grow beards, and style a patchy beard to make it look and feel fuller.

What causes patchy beards?

Uneven beard growth is a totally natural, albeit frustrating, thing for men to experience, but the good news is you can fix a patchy beard and get that luscious beard you dream of. Patchy facial hair has a number of causes, including:

  • Genetics— If you come from a family of patchy beards and male pattern baldness, your genetics probably play a big part in causing your patchy beard.
  • Stress— Stress is known to throw your hormones out of whack, including those that lead to healthy growth. Stressed-out dudes can often experience hair loss or slow hair growth.
  • Lifestyle— Eating a poor diet, not drinking enough water, and not getting enough exercise can negatively affect your testosterone levels and overall health.
  • Medical conditions— Alopecia is a common medical condition that causes bald spots on areas of the body that have hair, often leading to beard patchiness.
  • Low testosterone levels— Your patchy beard may be caused by a hormonal imbalance of testosterone, a hormone that plays a key part in facial hair growth.
  • Uneven hair growth rate— It's totally normal for different parts of your beard to grow at different speeds. If your entire beard doesn't grow at the same rate, the best solution may be to just let your beard grow out for a few weeks.

How to make a patchy beard look thicker

While you can't magically make a beard grow, there are a few tips and tricks to fix a patchy beard. Here are a few of the most common patchy beard solutions:

Use a Beard Brush or Comb

Brushing or combing your beard should be considered an essential part of your everyday grooming routine. Not only is the simple act of self-care relaxing and stress-relieving, but it actually promotes growth, improves blood circulation, reduces beard dandruff, and relieves itchy whiskers. Brushing your beard in the direction of hair growth helps to increase blood flow and stimulate your hair follicles. Plus, a beard comb or brush can help you style your beard to cover patchy spots that need more time to grow.

Apply a Styling Product like Beard Balm

A beard balm with a firm hold helps control the shape of your beard to tame stray beard hairs and strategically cover patchy areas. Look for a balm made with hydrating and soothing ingredients like coconut oil, shea butter, vitamin E, and essential oils like eucalyptus, lavender, peppermint, and rosemary.

Give it Time For Hair Growth

If you're looking to grow a full beard, you'll need to give your facial hair the time it needs to grow. While it may be tempting to reach for your razor, resist the urge and let it do its thing. You may need to go through a few awkward-looking phases before your beard reaches its full potential.

Plus, allowing your beard to grow out can be an incredibly helpful way to identify where your beard has trouble growing. Once your beard becomes long enough, use a beard comb to brush longer hairs over patchy bald spots to hide the skin underneath and create the illusion of a fuller beard.

Keep it Super Short

Alternatively, if you prefer to keep your facial hair short, stick with a permanent five-o-clock shadow that is just long enough to give the appearance of facial hair without highlighting your bald patches. Achieve the perfect close shave by using an electric shaver or beard trimmer on a low clipper guard number between 1 and 4.

Even Things Out with Beard Dye

While beard dye isn't the right solution for men with large bald patches, it's great for men looking to even out a multi-colored beard. While facial hair that grows in multiple colors can give off the appearance of an uneven or patchy beard, an evenly-dyed beard automatically looks thicker.

The trick to successfully dyeing your facial hair is to choose a natural shade that is no darker than your beard hair or the hair on your head. Be sure to wear gloves and apply petroleum jelly along the edge of your beard to prevent the dye from staining your skin.

Ditch the Beard for Another Facial Hair Style

You don't need to forego facial hair altogether just because your beard is too patchy for your personal tastes. Instead, try another style like a mustache or goatee that can easily hide patches. There are plenty of patchy beard styles out there. All you need to do is find the right one for you.

Talk with Your Doctor or Dermatologist

If your beard patches are seriously killing your self-confidence, it may be worth talking to your doctor or dermatologist about a solution. A medical professional can help determine any underlying causes that may be affecting hair growth and offer safe solutions to boost testosterone levels and promote hair growth.

Eat a Healthy Diet

Poor diet not only affects your health, but it can affect how fast your hair grows. When you eat a healthy diet, your beard will benefit from all the vitamins and nutrients.

The best products for patchy beard growth

Briogeo B. Well Vegan Omegas + Biotin Supplements for Hair Thinning

Looking for a natural way to combat hair loss and patchy beard growth? Try a hair supplement like these Briogeo B. Well Vegan Omegas + Biotin Supplements for Hair Thinning. The key ingredient of the all-natural, vegan capsules is biotin, a vitamin known to stimulate hair growth to help you achieve fuller, healthier hair on both your face and head. Additionally, they contain omega 3, 6, and 9 fatty acids, along with other essential vitamins to support your overall health.

Uncle Jimmy Beard Growth Oil

Hydration is key to healthy beard growth, and it starts at a healthy hair follicle. Using a beard oil like this luxurious Beard Growth Oil from Uncle Jimmy helps soften and condition your beard hair while keeping the underlying skin moisturized and itch-free. The lightweight beard oil contains a natural blend of essential oils, herbal extracts, and biotin to stimulate hair follicles as it hydrates, promotes growth, and banishes beard dandruff. For best results, use beard oils every day immediately after washing your face.

Scotch Porter Conditioning Beard Balm

A reliable beard balm, like the best-selling Conditioning Beard Balm from Scotch Porter, allows you to smooth over sparse spots and tame annoying flyaways. The lightweight balm is made with soothing and moisturizing ingredients like vitamin B, marshmallow root, and willow bark extract to condition coarse beard hairs. Plus, it's made with biotin to boost beard growth.

Cremo Premium Boar Bristle Beard Brush for Shaping and Styling

Give your beard the love it deserves with a high-quality beard brush like this Premium Boar Bristle Beard Brush from Cremo. The comfortable wood handle and stiff boar hair bristles make it easy to shape and style your beard hair over patchy areas that need additional coverage. Plus, regular brushing can help encourage your beard to grow in the right direction.

Beardbrand Lumber Yard Beard Wash

A good beard wash, such as the Lumber Yard Beard Wash from Beardbrand, can make a big difference when it comes to beard care. The sulfate-free formula gently cleans your beard to get rid of dirt, sweat, product build-up, and other irritating and acne-causing gunk without stripping the skin underneath of the natural oils needed for beard growth. The deliciously woodsy scent—which features notes of cedarwood and sandalwood— is just the cherry on top.

About the author

Emily is a fashion consultant, designer and creative director with more than 15 years experience creating, designing and developing clothing & jewelry. From managing pageant shows to turning concepts into actual designs, she has experience with almost all fabric types and jewelry designs and is in touch with the latest fashion trends.


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