Growing a beard has never been more popular, with a 2017 YouGov survey suggesting that among 18- to 39-year-olds, 61% sported some form of facial hair.
But with this popularity, there are also many common misconceptions about beards. I tend to get a lot of questions from people which I still can’t get my head around!
This blog post will hopefully dispel some of those beard myths that you may have heard.
My beard is patchy so I can never grow a full beard
This is one of the more common beard myths. People let it grow for a couple of weeks and start to see patches and begin to panic. Many will feel that all they can do is shave it off and accept that they just can’t grow a big, full beard.
One thing I do believe is essential when it comes to growing a beard is patience. You should never judge your beard’s progress after a couple of weeks. If I did, I would probably not have one!
My advice would be to let it grow for at least three months. You will be surprised at how different even the sparsest beard looks after that length of time.
As your hair grows longer, it will begin to drop, (regular brushing and combing also helps with this,) and will more than likely cover your patchy parts.
If this doesn’t happen, all is not lost! You can always try out a different beard style such as a goatee which might suit your face even better.
You must shave your beard off for interviews
When I left university, like many others, I struggled to find a job. Interviews were few and far between.
At the time of these interviews I had a beard. Obviously determined to do well, I would look at websites such as this one which state that having a beard can make you look suspicious and shave it off. Surely that would guarantee that I got the job?
But guess what? It didn’t. Rather than my beard being the problem, it was my lack of experience which held me back.
After coming to this conclusion, I decided to keep my beard when going for interviews. I basically had the attitude that if the company were against beards, then they’re obviously not the company for me.
The result? I have been offered a job both times. Although not a defining factor, I can certainly say that I felt more confident with one than without, which definitely helped me.
Beards are itchy and scratchy
We’ve all been there. After a couple of weeks of growing a beard everything is going great. But then, out of nowhere, the dreaded itch starts.
But in my opinion, this is greatly exaggerated. The itchy phase tends to pass very quickly and for some lucky guys, it doesn’t happen at all!
If it does persist, then it is not down to the beard, but the skin that lies beneath. Simply washing it won’t do. Only by using beard oil and balm can you ensure that the skin is moisturised, the irritation is reduced and the itchiness stops.
By following a regular grooming routine, you will also notice that your beard will feel soft to touch. Great for anyone who happens to come into contact with it!
Shaving makes the hair grow back thicker
This is one of the stranger beard myths out there. I mean, how is it possible to trim or shave your beard and for it to grow back thicker?
To be honest, it can’t. Well one thing’s for certain, it certainly hasn’t been proved!
In my opinion, it is simply down to genetics. I am lucky in the fact that my beard tends to grow back quite quickly. In fact, this was one of reasons why I grew a beard in the first place, as I hated the fact that I would have to shave so regularly. The irony now being of course that I probably spend more time now looking after my beard!
Beards make you hotter in the summer
Like me, I am sure you can see the logic in this. Having a huge amount of hair on your face is surely going to be a nightmare on a hot summer’s day?
But let’s look at this another way. By having a beard, you are actually keeping the sun and heat from reaching your skin. Well most types of beard do anyway!
Also, according to Business Insider, since the beard hair forces sweat to bead closer to the skin’s surface (and stay there), beards can actually have a cooling property on a breezy day. Who would have thought it?
If you have heard of any other beard myths, please feel free to leave a comment. I would love to add a few more to this blog post!