Beard Transplant (Implants): Risks & Rewards to Know

Last Updated: 2021-09-25

by Jeel Patel

Patchy facial hair is the second most common problem bearded guys face after slow hair growth.  There can be multiple reasons contributing to this, amongst which genetics tops the chart.  However, there is a solution to it – beard transplant.  The problem and solution are similar to head hair loss.

In such scenarios, dermatologists evaluate the beard and the skin underneath it and then tell you whether it’s worth your investment or not.  However, no one in the world guarantees sure-shot results.  Therefore, your aim should be to find a qualified provider, just the way app enthusiasts find a dedicated developer to build an app.  The provider will tell you the possibilities of beard growth after transplant. (Note that beard transplant is too major of a move, so first look if you are in any of the beard-growing stages or not! If yes then no need for a beard transplant.)

In this article, you will get to know everything about beard transplants, their pros & cons, types, working process, how to boost the process, and how to find suitable dermatologists.  Also, a predefined budget so that you know how much beard implant is going to cost.

What Is Beard Transplant?

A beard transplant is a process under which hair grafts are taken from one place (usually the back of the head) and planted to the patchy areas.  It requires around 3500-4500 hair follicle grafts* under the process.  Some dermatologists may also use two hairs per graft to offer a thicker and natural appearance.

*A graft is a hair follicle implanted in the process.

Let’s have a look at the benefits and pitfalls of beard transplants.

Benefits & Pitfalls Of Beard Transplant

Every coin has two sides, and it’s important to know both sides, especially when you or your hard-earned money is involved.  In beard transplants, both you and your money are involved, so let’s know both sides of it.

Benefits of Beard Transplant

beard hair transplant

Choose Your Beard Style

Beard transplants give freedom to choose the beard style you want to wear.  You can go through the best beard styles and let your dermatologist know about them.

Beard Attracts Women

Do women find guys with beards attractive?

A study found on 900 women shows that a maximum of them favour beards and want to date a bearded guy.  Besides, stubble is a women’s favourite beard style, so it is advisable to grow stubble and then grow longer beards.

Minimal Pain

Undeniably, the beard transplant process is painful, but it causes pain similar to a small pinch.  The incisions on the face cause pain.

Quick Recovery

While it causes pain, you will quickly recover as well.  The transplant process takes around 5-6 hours, which means a day off at work suffices.  You can expect swelling and redness for a few days, but it will go on its own, and there is no need to panic.

Shaving & Styling Your Beard Like Others

Are you wondering if you can shave or style like your dad or friend?  Yes, as soon as the beard begins to grow naturally like others (after all, it’s your own hair.) It not only allows you to shave but also style your facial hair.

Pitfalls of Beard Implants

beard implants

Temporary Hair Loss From Elsewhere

The beard transplant is all about plucking hair from somewhere else (mostly the back of your head) and grafting it into your jawline or patchy areas.  In this process, there will be a temporary hair loss on the back of the head, which will grow in a few weeks.  Also, the surgeon will take every fifth hair strand, which may only look thinner but won’t impact appearance.

Beards Fall Soon

Be prepared to lose all your new beard hairs in three weeks.  However, it’s just a part of the process, and you will soon grow facial hair back fully, as stated by your surgeon.

Costly

To be honest, the cost of a beard transplant is comparatively higher than its alternatives (discussed later in the article).  It may charge you somewhere around $10,000 to $20,000.

Here is the caveat, some surgeons charge per sitting, while some per grafts. 

Number of grafts * price per graft = Total cost

Additionally, the surgeons charge consultation fees, which may also vary.  It includes finding the cause of no hair growth, how to fix the grafts, and where to pluck the grafts.

From the above discussion, we hope you have got to know the basics about beard transplants.  Now let’s know different approaches to execute facial hair transplants.

What Are Different Beard Transplants?

The two types of beard transplant approaches are:

Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)

The Follicular Unit Extraction procedure is quite simple and straightforward.  It involves harvesting individual hairs from a donor area and grafting them on the patchy facial areas.  The procedure is time-efficient and less painful, which is why many men prefer it.  Also, it quickly recovers without causing discomfort.

Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT)

In this procedure, the surgeon cuts a small strip of tissue from the donor area, removes hair follicles, stitches up the wound, and transplants the hairs.  It is time-consuming both in performing and recovering.  Also, it leaves scars behind. However, the results are highly satisfying since there will be more transplanted hairs during the procedure.

Now that you know the theoretical part- let’s also look at the practical part of it.

How Does Beard Transplant Work?

The beard transplant procedure involves three steps:

beard transplant cost

Step 1: Harvesting 

Irrespective of beard transplant types, the surgeon will shave off the scalp area for harvesting.  The clean area will help your surgeon to harvest the hair follicles easily.  But before starting the process, you will be given an anesthetic, after which you will neither feel harvesting nor implantation.

Step 2: Implantation

Once the surgeon harvests hair follicles from the scalp, he will soon start implanting them on your face.  The surgeon will meticulously place each hair follicle into your facial skin and give them shape, which you and your doctor agreed upon before the surgery.

Step 3: Recovery

It only takes a day to recover from beard surgery; however, there would be tiny flakes around transplanted hair follicles, which will take a few days to flake off.  We would recommend waiting at least 10-15 days before shaving or styling your new hair.  As a fact, this new beard begins to fall apart, which requires no panicking because the good news is within three months, you will have healthy hair growth.

So this is how beard transplant works, and all the steps are equally important in beard transplantation.  Now, let’s see the beard implants before and after-effects.  Also, we will discuss things during beard transplantation.

Before & After Beard Transplant

beard transplant before and after

A few things Do’s and Don’ts before undergoing beard transplantation surgery are:

  • Do not take Aspirin 10 days before the surgery.
  • Do not take anti-inflammatory tablets or drink Alcohol 3-days prior to surgery.
  • Start taking Vitamin-C for 7-days prior to surgery to shorten the beard transplant recovery period.
  • Avoid drinking caffeine on the beard transplant surgery day.

Now let’s look at post-surgery hassles:

  • Bruising 
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Ingrown hair
  • Temporary flakes and crustiness
  • Numbness & Tightness

You must not wash the face post-beard transplantation.  Also, the tiny visible crusts will go within a few days, and if not, you can consult your surgeon.  Your surgeon may prescribe you medicine or antibiotic ointment that can prevent infection.

So these are beard transplant side effects and their cure.  Now let’s look at the things to consider when transplanting a beard.

  • Beards and hairs on the back of the head might have different colours.
  • Hair shapes may also differ.  For instance, if the transplanted hair from the scalp is curly, it will not be suitable for the beard and may ruin your surgery.
  • You must not eat solid food as chewing may damage hair follicles.

Now that you know every single detail about facial hair transplants, it is also important for you to know whether you are eligible for a beard hair transplant or not.

Are You An Eligible Candidate?

Before undergoing Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) or Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT), you must have healthy hair follicles in the scalp area, that is the back of your head.  It is the last area that encounters male pattern baldness, which means even if you lose hair on the top, there will be hairs on the backside.

Besides, the surgeon will examine the area to determine whether there are enough follicular units to transplant or not.  If the surgeon finds weaker follicles, he may suggest alternatives.

So that’s how you will know whether you will be able to have a facial hair transplant or not.  After knowing that you are eligible and after undergoing the transplant, how will you know whether the hair transplant is successful or not?  Read on to know more about it.

How To Know The Effectiveness Of Beard Transplant?

You will notice the transplanted hair follicles will start growing within four months of the procedure, irrespective of beard transplant types.  Besides, on the successful completion of 8-9 months, you will be able to flourish a luscious beard.

Both procedures grow beards; however, follicular unit transplantation (FUT) beards are longer and bushier.  One of the reasons is harvesting more hair follicles at the time of stripping off the skin.  So, if you are aiming at thick beards, we recommend FUT surgery.

In rare cases, beard transplants fail, and the reason could be improper or inefficient harvesting of hair follicles from the donor area or improper implantation.  And it all depends on the surgeon’s experience.  That’s why it is advisable to consult experienced hair restoration surgeons.  No matter if they charge high, the results should be long-lasting and visible.

How to find a good beard restoration surgeon is one of the questions crossing your mind?  Don’t worry! The next section is all about scrutinizing the best hair restoration surgeon.

How to Find A Hair Restoration Surgeon?

beard surgery

Finding a hair restoration surgeon is easy but finding a well-trained and experienced surgeon is a daunting task.  Also, many men drop the idea of surgery after knowing the high fees and cost of it.  Besides, some men even divert towards cheaper surgeons to save money.

All this only drains your hard-earned money and may also cause pain and discomfort.  To know who are experienced and qualified surgeons, you must know the following things:

  • Are They Trained?

Your hair restoration surgeon should be highly trained under expert professionals.  Most surgeons mention these things on their websites or in their clinics.  So do check it before consulting them.

  • How Many Years of Experience or Surgeries are Successful?

Follicular Unit Extraction is a difficult procedure, which requires practice to excel in it.  You must ask or find out the number of years of experience.  You can check out the website as it contains all the vital information about the hair restoration surgeon.

  • What is the Expertise of a Hair Restoration Surgeon?

Since there are two different types of beard transplants, you must know the expertise of your hair restoration surgeon and the number of satisfied customers.  Even this information is also updated on the website to attract new customers.

  • Are They Specialized or Just a Surgeon?

A specialized hair restoration surgeon in particular beard transplant types will have more experience and knowledge than the multiple service offerers.

  • Is the Surgeon Member of ISHRS or IAHRS?

You can know the credibility of the hair restoration surgeon by knowing if they are a member of the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgeons (ISHRS) or the International Alliance of Hair Restoration Surgeons (IAHRS).  

  • Do They Provide Consultation?

You must also know that the hair restoration surgeon offers an initial consultation or not to identify the underlying conditions or factors affecting beard growth.  In this consultation, they will also check the eligible follicles from the donor area and the number of beard transplants you will require to have a fuller beard.

  • Do They Use Advanced Technology?

You don’t want your hair transplants to ruin or drain your money spent on costly surgeries, which is why you will require to know what instruments your hair restoration surgeon is going to use and are they all high quality.  Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) punches are sharp, which a few surgeons re-use by cutting the corners of punches.

  • Do They Have a Workfolio?

The experienced hair restoration surgeon will have a good portfolio with high-quality photos and no dark or blurred photos.

That’s how you will be able to identify the best hair restoration surgeon.  Now let’s see how much does a beard transplant cost.

How Much Does A Beard Transplant Cost?

As discussed earlier, beard hair transplants are expensive and start from somewhere around $10,000-$15000.  Also, it depends on the number of grafts needed to implant.  Some men may also opt for a partial transplant wherein it fills the patchy areas of the beard.  It costs somewhere around $4,000 to $7,000.

Your surgeon will examine your scalp and tell you if you are a good candidate or not during consultation.  There is also a consultation charge included, which you will need to pay apart from the surgery.

Since beard implants cost doesn’t cover under medical insurance, you have bare cost on your own.  If not, then you can look at the substitute for this cosmetic surgery.

Beard Transplant Alternatives

Here are the four beard transplant alternatives, which you can ponder upon if surgery is costly or not a feasible option for you.

Minoxidil (Rogaine) for Beards

Minoxidil or Rogaine is an effective treatment against hair loss on the scalp.  However, it even stimulates facial hair growth.  Though it has got approval from FDA and many men support it, it isn’t a permanent solution like beard transplantation.

FYI, Minoxidil helps in lowering blood pressure, and hair growth is its side effect.

Minoxidil boosts blood flow, which helps follicles get sufficient hormones, nutrients, and vitamins to the beards.  The hair passes through three stages; Anagen, Catagen, and Telogen.  Of which, Anagen is the phase wherein hair grows, and Minoxidil helps in prolonging the phase.  

Applying Minoxidil can cause some side effects, such as dry skin, irregular heartbeat, weight gain, or lower blood pressure.  However, you should not stop applying it as it can slow down your hair growth.

Beard Growth Supplements

Beard growth supplements aren’t magic pills that will grow new hair in no hair zone; it grows existing hair longer and fuller.  It improves the density and quality of beard growth.  Most beard growth products contain biotin, which boosts beard growth and prevents hair loss.  Besides, you can try beard oil, shampoo, and spray for a thicker and fuller beard.

Hormone Therapy

Testosterone plays a crucial role in beard growth, and if it is lacking, the doctor suggests hormone pills, creams, or injections speed up testosterone levels.  Obviously, there will be health risks, which is why you must consult your doctor before undergoing hormone therapy.

Lifestyle Changes

Apart from genetics, lifestyle also plays a crucial role in male pattern baldness.  Here are three things that you must ponder upon to grow a full beard.

  • Exercise daily to blood circulation, which ensures proper vitamins and nutrient supply to healthy hair follicles.
  • A healthy diet that includes zinc, whole grains, vegetables, fruits, iron, vitamins A, B, C, D, and E should be in your meal.
  • Get 8 hours of proper sleep.

So these are the alternatives to beard transplants.  However, these are temporary solutions and require you to continue doing them.  Now let’s answer some questions to clear the doubts.

FAQs:

1. When can I start shaving after a hair transplant?

You can start to trim and shave after a month of beard transplantation. However, you must not cut or trim hair shorter than 3mm. Also, you must use a trimmer with a plastic cover over the razor and do not use a metal razor until six months.

2. Who can have a beard transplant?

Men who have fuller and healthier hair growth on the scalp can have a beard hair transplant. During the consultation, surgeons check on the scalp and assess the number of grafts required for beard hair transplant. Surgeons take hair from the back of your head or even from the chest.

3. Can I undergo a mustache transplant?

Mustache transplant also comes under facial hair transplant, which is a surgical procedure wherein the scalp hair is transplanted to the mustache or beard area, lacking fullness and density.

4. Is Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) restoration for receding sideburns possible?

Yes. However, it is non-stop and requires multiple procedures, especially if the hair is thin or thinning with time.

5. Is there any way to boost hair growth after a beard hair transplant?

PRP is an after-treatment procedure to speed up hair growth. The treatment promotes hair growth once the transplanted hair is shifted to the recipient area. It also quickens the healing process. You can expect to see a full beard after a year of PRP treatment.

Conclusion

Hair transplants are a permanent solution to natural hair loss or hair thinning.  It is the reason for the growing popularity of facial hair transplants.  However, it costs too much, which not everyone can afford.  It is one of the reasons why men look for alternatives. However, they are time-consuming and show results after continuous use.

In our opinion, a beard transplant is the only way to grow your beard naturally.  Many men enjoy it and have received no complaints stating beard transplant gone wrong.  You can also share your beard transplant experience with us and let us know how you feel.  Also, you can share before and after pictures of the transplant.

Disclaimer

Published Date: Jul 26, 2021

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