Movember is an annual event. “Mo” stands for mustache and November is the month that has become a “no shave” for men to grow mustaches and beards to raise awareness of various cancers such as prostate cancer. However, this can lead to many embarrassing and failed attempts as men feel that their masculinity is manifested in such facial hair. Those who don’t grow as much are often left behind in ridicule and are ready to give up by mid-November.
If this has happened to you, do not fear and do NOT reach for that razor just yet. Here are some tips that will help you grow more facial hair.
1. Get plenty of vitamins.
Vitamins, minerals and nutrients in our diets can greatly aid or hinder your ability to grow facial hair. Steve Grant, a Nutritionist has this to say about it, “facial hair growth can be affected by both the macronutrients – proteins, fats and carbohydrates – we consume, as well as the micronutrients – vitamins and minerals.”
He also says that “testosterone can play an important role and it is wise to ensure you are getting adequate levels of zinc, magnesium and vitamin D to achieve optimal testosterone production. Your best source for vitamin D – other than sunshine – is eggs, oily fish and cod,” he continues and “zinc can be found in red meats, broccoli, spinach, liver and oysters. And magnesium is found in almonds, cashews, halibut, mackerel and bone broths.”
“Other key players would be vitamins A, C and E – and also numerous B vitamins including B3 and B7 – the latter of which can be found in salmon, dairy products, certain nuts and avocado.”
“The minerals you’ll need include selenium [found in Brazil nuts], iron [liver and pumpkin seeds] and calcium [milk and cheese].
Supplementation could work in some instances, but don’t expect a miracle if your diet isn’t up to scratch!”
2. Exercise and sleeping well.
Adults need at least six hours of sleep a night during which the body rebuilds, repairs and grows. This includes facial hair. So, sleep in and wake up to more facial hair! During sleep, your body is also relaxed which helps with stress and with less stress, your immune system will stay strong because a weak immune system could cause slower hair growth. Exercise is a natural stimulant which will help aid in growth. So, you must attempt to raise your heartbeat for at least one hour a day in order to increase your testosterone levels.
3. Try taking testosterone supplements.
However, according to Professor Joe Herbert, a hormone specialist at the University of Cambridge, “Testosterone boosters would only result in increased facial hair growth if the man’s testosterone was initially below the optimal level,” reveals the endocrinologist, “and this level differs somewhat between males. Additionally, the size and quality of moustache really depends on how many hair follicles there are on a man’s face, their distribution, and whether or not they contain a sufficient amount of receptors to recognise the testosterone in the first place.”
He also warns, “Moustaches aside, taking too many testosterone supplements can also damage your body,” Herbert warns. “They can damage your liver, may increase the risk of heart attacks and lead to other vascular problems. They may also increase the size of your prostate – which would both lead to urinary infections and exacerbate the risk of prostate cancer! They are not at all a good idea!”
4. Take care of your skin.
All mustache competitions aside, a man should always care for his skin. Avoid using very hot water to wash or in the shower as this make your skin dry prematurely. Also, it is important to use a good moisturizer.
5. Quit smoking!
This can seriously affect your ability to grow facial hair. According to Lisa Gilbey at the Northants Hair & Scalp Clinic, “we do know is that smoking has a similar effect on the hair as ageing. By impairing the circulation, and therefore, decreasing the capillary blood flow to the hair’s root, this results in the cells being denied the optimum requirements for normal growth and mitosis.”
She also says that “cigarettes contain over 4800 chemicals and they also cause oxidative stress on all and any hair growth and pigmentation.
“Smoking depletes many vitamins with its free radicals destroying cells, and when B vitamins are depleted they upset the metabolic pathway for melanin – the colour pigment. This can result in hair turning prematurely grey.
“Another way smoking can affect hair growth is through diet. We do not store important B vitamins in our bodies as they are water soluble so, as mentioned above, a good diet is essential. But smoking can deplete the amount of food you feel the need to consume and, as your food intake drops, so does the amount of vitamins and minerals you assimilate.”
Therefore, smoking can hinder any chances that you have to grow outstanding facial hair.
6. Work with what you have.
Your masculinity depends up it during the Movember event. Start by growing out everything until you feel that your mustache will stand a chance after simultaneously growing out a beard. Then, shave your beard. The contrast between your skin and hair will really help it to stand out.