Facial Hair?

I am 29 year old white male and cannot grow facial hair. Is there something I can do besides a facial hair transplant or rubbing rogaine on my face every night? How is it that a transgender that was born a female are able to grow natural looking facial hair. I can grow a little under my chin (about 40 hairs) but nowhere else. I really need help. Thank You.

Doctor Answers 5

Stimulating Facial Hair Growth

Facial hair transplant and Rogaine are the two most effective treatments for beard growth. Hormones (the origin of the problem, due to genetics) can have dangerous side effects, unfortunately. Transgender (female to male conversion) could experience regeneration of dormant follicles in the facial area from extraneous androgenic hormone use, because the dormancy of the hair was caused by the influence of female hormones and suppression of male hormone effects. In your case, you are genetically devoid of hair in the facial areas. Hence simply using extra male hormones may not help your situation and as mentioned previously, it could pose health risks. Have you tried using Rogaine? I would recommend that approach first, and if that doesn’t work, consult a hair transplant surgeon.

Redondo Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

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Facial Hair Growth / Beard Transplant

Transgender females to males take testosterone, but I have performed
beard transplants on several FTM transgender patients with success.
Similarly, I regularly - on average once or twice weekly - perform beard
transplants on men seeking thicker beards.

Jeffrey Epstein, MD, FACS
Miami Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Facial hair growth

There are many methods of hair transplantation.  Wanted them RFUE and another can be a surgical flap.  Grafts can be taken with as few as one hair follicle or multiple follicles.  The quality of the hair, the number of follicles per unit and the location in which the hair is to be placed are all important determinants in the final result.  While it is a common misconception that hair can and should be taken from any location, taking appropriate hair from an appropriate location is key to success.  For instance, one cannot always use hair from a beard to replace a frontal hairline.  The orientation in which Harris placed is also important.  If the frontal hairline is being created then it is important to make sure that hairs are aligned in the correct orientation.  The way the hair is also laid down, for example a staggered pattern versus a straight line will also change the quality of the result.  You should certainly visit with a surgeon who does many of these types of transplantations as well as offers multiple options for hair restoration.  The cost can vary by geographic locale.  In general they can arrange from $7000-$25,000.  When you go over consultation ask for before and after photographs.

Raj S. Ambay, MD
Brandon Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Hormones, genetics, and many other factors can affect the rate of facial hair growth

Hormones, genetics, and many other factors can affect the rate of facial hair growth. Rogaine® (Minoxidil) is an effective treatment for hair loss, but it’s necessary to discuss with a board certified dermatologist who specializes in hair restoration to determine if this or an alternate treatment would be best for your situation. Generally hormone replacement is the cause for facial hair in a transgender individual. However, this is not something that we would recommend for a male in your situation.

Ashley R. Curtis, MD
Atlanta Dermatologic Surgeon

Hair loss & growth is in the genes

Actually Rogaine might help; give it six to twelve months.

if you are genetically programmed to have minimal facial hair, your follicles have a minimal response to the hormonal signal telling the follicle to produce a strong terminal hair. Rogaine works by a different pathway.

Alexander Lewis, MD
Walnut Creek Dermatologic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.