For many men, beards are a symbol of masculinity, strength and maturity, but what happens when you are unable to grow the beard that you want? It could be that you prefer to look elsewhere to assert your personal style and self-confidence, but the option of undergoing a beard transplant is becoming more popular recently. Whether you are keen to grow a bushier beard or are hoping to cover up scarring or other skin imperfections, a beard transplant can be the answer to your facial hair concerns.
Always consult your doctor before agreeing to beard transplant surgery, as you may have underlying medical conditions, or be on medication that could affect your viability for the procedure or have an adverse effect on your recovery. Your doctor should also be able to refer you to a good hair transplant clinic.
How does it work?
The process involves taking hair from elsewhere on the body – usually the base of the scalp – and transplanting it in grafts into your chin, one or two hairs at a time to create the desired shape. It can involve moving up to 7,000 hairs, so the process is painstaking, but can produce some excellent results. Each hair graft must be carefully placed to grow in the right direction to create a natural-looking beard, so a properly qualified hair transplant surgeon must undertake the procedure to achieve the desired result.
Beard transplantation is a medical procedure, so care must be taken before, during and after the event to ensure that the patient is physically healthy and mentally prepared to undertake the transplant and work in their own best interests afterwards to promote rapid, responsible healing of the grafts.
How to care for your newly transplanted beard
There can be swelling and redness afterwards, so avoid touching the area, even to wash it for the first 24 hours and use a saline spray if necessary if you experience any mild discomfort or dryness. Seek medical help immediately if the discomfort becomes more acute or you start to feel unwell.
In the following days and weeks, wash the area gently with a mild soap and warm water. Do not go out into direct sunlight. The transplanted hairs will fall out after three or four weeks, which is perfectly normal. You will then have to wait until the hair grows back to form your brand new beard. Make sure that you attend all follow-up appointments with your beard transplant surgeon or clinic.
Choosing where to have the procedure done
There are several hair and beard transplant clinics opening up around the world, including in the UK, USA and Turkey. Whether you choose to have it done in your home country or to visit a beard transplant Turkey clinic, for example, do your research carefully before signing on the dotted line. Make sure your chosen provider is properly qualified, insured and experienced, with full equipment and surgical premises and a comprehensive after-care plan. They should also be a member of a professional body, such as the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgeons or the International Alliance of Hair Restoration Surgeons.
Work out your travel and accommodation arrangements well in advance and make sure that you are fully aware of what everything will cost so that you can establish a budget that suits your individual circumstances. You will be required to bring someone with you too, as reputable clinics will not let patients who have just undergone surgery of this nature to leave their premises alone. Try to read reviews from former patients, and speak to them if possible about their experiences there.