How to Enhance a Thin and Patchy Beard

Make your beard look fuller with a few clever tricks.
... Jack Hollingsworth/Photodisc/Getty Images

A thick, full beard is a badge of honor for many men, but growing one isn't always as easy as it looks. If your facial hair grows thin and patchy, don't give up on the beard of your dreams just yet. By keeping your beard clean, combed and conditioned, it will look healthy whether it's short or long. For extra effect, boost growth with castor oil or make your beard look fuller instantly with spray-on hair.

Stop shaving and let your beard grow. Once you've skipped shaving for a few days, your face may start to itch. This usually goes away after the first week of hair growth.

Wash your beard several times a week with a moisturizing shampoo. This will keep your beard hairs from getting brittle, so they'll look healthier. After washing, apply a dab of thick conditioner and work it through your beard, then let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing. Leave-in conditioner also works.

Comb or brush your facial hair to make your beard look fuller. Hide patchy spots by brushing longer hairs over them, for example.

Massage a few drops of castor oil into your beard at night before bed. Rinse off in the morning. Repeat this nightly until you observe noticeable growth, then continue applying the oil once a week.

Fill in patchy spots with a spray-on hair product. To use, comb beard hair away from the area you want to treat, then shake the product can well. Hold the can 4 to 8 inches away from your skin, then spray the patchy areas until they're completely covered with color. Let the product dry for 30 to 60 seconds, and then style your beard as desired. Spray-on hair products will make your beard look fuller and thicker instantly. Pick a color that closely matches your natural beard color for best results. Facial-hair dye may also work, but it's not as effective for very thin or fine hair.

  • If your beard is still patchy and thin after two to three months of growth, it's probably not going to get any fuller. This is usually caused by genetics, so it can't be changed.
  • Keep your beard looking good with a regular trim. Snip off hair tips every two months to get rid of straggly split ends.
  • You can try treating your patchy beard with biotin, a natural hair-growth supplement. Biotin is available in supplement and topical form, and you should check with your doctor before proceeding. Topical forms vary in their application, but, in general, massage the biotin product into the skin of your chin and other spots you'd like hair to grow. Allow the skin to absorb the product fully. You may or may not need to rinse -- this depends on your product. If you opt for supplement form, follow dosing instructions on the package for best results. Biotin may also make your other body hair grow faster, too, so keep this in mind before trying it. Always follow the package instructions.

Melissa King began writing in 2001. She spent three years writing for her local newspaper, "The Colt," writing editorials, news stories, product reviews and entertainment pieces. She is also the owner and operator of Howbert Freelance Writing. King holds an Associate of Arts in communications from Tarrant County College.