It would seem natural that our beards would grow thicker during the winter months to keep us warm. This is true for many of our mammalian counterparts—for example, the heavy winter coat of a horse, the fluffy mane of a winter fox, the thick fur of the Polar bear, and the thick wool of sheep. In all these animals there is a marked difference in the growth of hair between seasons—shedding in summer and growing in winter. But fear not, you are a beast as well and you also have significant seasonal changes in your hair growth, except your mane grows fuller and thicker in the summer as opposed to the winter. Seems counterintuitive I know, but it’s true. Let’s first look at the scientific proof and then explore the reasons why.

The Scientific Proof

In 2009 (the same year Boston Beard Works was born, incidentally), V.A. Randall and N.V. Botchkavera conducted a study of male hair growth over a 14 month period. The two researchers studied a group of 14 men, ages 18 to 39, diligently tracking both their body and facial hair growth. In the study they published, they noted that there were clear seasonal changes in the rate of such growth, especially of the beard. In a nutshell, they concluded that beard (and all body hair) grows faster in summer and slows down in winter.

chart2


“… clear seasonal changes in the rate of such growth, especially of the beard.”
Source ; V.A. Randall and N.V. Botchkavera 2009, “The Biology of Hair Growth,
Randall & Botchkavera.” Facial Hair Upper Panel pg. 17

The Reasons
The reasons for this now proven human phenomenon are not totally understood. It no doubt is the result of a number of factors, however, but mainly boils down to the production of more testosterone during the summer months (see the discussion of this topic in our last Blog, “Bald or Not, People Have Beards”). Longer daylight hours enable us to spend more time outdoors, which in turn usually means more physical activity and greater production of testosterone. More skimpily-clad women walking around no doubt also plays a part, raising our male hormonal levels and resulting in thicker, longer beards. While these might be the primary causes, other factors might kick in as well, such as more varied summer diets, leading to more vitamin intake, and longer sunlight hours, producing more vitamin D. Even just the increased cardiovascular circulation from the added activity during the summer months probably counts.

Conclusion
In summary, the answer is “Yes,” your beard will definitely grow faster in the summer. So if you want a massive winter mane, our advice is to get a jumpstart on that growth during the summer. So start now!

At Boston Beard Works we are dedicated to the success of your facial hair, so whenever we can we give you a visual to remember. In the diagram below, we have flipped the good work of Randall and Botchkavera, translating it into our own version. As you can see, there is a dramatic difference in growth between the seasons, with the most growth occurring between June and July and the least between January and February.

beard-diagram