Men Using Balding Drug To Grow Beards
Given that research has suggested having a beard makes you healthier and more handsome, it should come as no surprise that some men are going to relatively extreme lengths to grow one.
According to The Daily Mail, there's a new trend among men who struggle to grow facial hair - they're smearing hair loss drug minoxidil to their faces twice a day.
One of its biggest advocates is Adam Siddals. The 27-year-old business analyst from Derby started using the product - which is sold under the brand name Regaine in the UK - in 2016.
Speaking to MailOnline, he said: "I had a very patchy jaw-strap, a bit more hair on the chin, a tiny bit under my neck and a very weak, straggly moustache.
"It really bothered me, I was insecure about my lack of facial hair. My friends always used to tease me for having no facial hair.
"They used to say, 'Just face it, you'll never grow a beard, quit trying.'
"It sounds silly but I felt I had to prove them wrong. I remind them all the time that they are the reason I started using minoxidil."
Adam spent weeks on research, trying to find a cure for his lack of facial hair, but when he found it he didn't want to get his hopes up.
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He continued: "I don't believe in miracle cures or magic tablets.
"I did research for about a month before ordering my first can of Minoxidil. I didn't believe it would work, if I'm honest.
"But as I started documenting my journey, the results came so quick. It was surreal, I couldn't believe it."
Although experts say the hairs stop growing when you stop using the treatment, Adam hasn't used it for nine months and said he hadn't noticed any change - but reminded anyone willing to give it a go that they should research the side effects before use.
The drug helps blood flow to hair follicles and widens it, meaning hair grows thicker and longer. it was first found to have hair growth properties during trials in the 70s, where it was being tested as a treatment for high blood pressure.
It had the unexpected side effect of excess hair growth, which led to it being used as a treatment for balding.
Adam added: "Scalp hair shredding sometimes freaks people out, even though it's quite rare.
"Another common side effect is dry skin and potential heart palpitations. I'd also tell newcomers to start slow.
"There's no need to be applying the strongest, most concentrated form of minoxidil when you're starting out. And use the foam, it has less side effects."
The over-the-counter balding medication comes in foam or liquid form and you don't need a prescription for it, either - it's available on Amazon and in pharmacies, although it's important to remember that it hasn't been tested or approved for use on the face.
Featured Image Credit: PA