Why Do Women Grow Beards? All you need to know

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Beards are almost synonymous with adult males, as you’ll find one on almost every one of them. However, some women do grow beards, and no, they’re not trans. If they weren’t previously men, you may ask, why do women grow beards then?

Women can grow beards due to a high level of the androgen hormones, the hormone responsible for male sexual characteristics. This condition is known as hirsutism, which is a symptom of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS).

why do women grow beards guide

What Is Hirsutism?

Hirsutism is a condition where unwanted hair grows in a woman’s face, chest, and back. The condition is a result of excess androgen hormone secretion in women, which results in the development of male sexual characteristics.

Hirsutism can be natural, but it’s sometimes also a result of the activities of an individual, like the use of certain medications. The following section will go into extensive detail about the causes of Hirsutism in women.

Why Do Women Grow Beards?

The short answer is they secrete excess androgen that causes the development of male sexual characteristics. However, the long answer is a bit more complicated, as the causes of Hirsutism can range from natural factors to artificial causes.

Here are some medically proven reasons why women grow beards.

1. Genetics

Heredity is one of the most common factors that contribute to beard growth in women. So if you have beards as a lady, there’s a high chance that your mother, grandmother, or aunt has had a similar experience. There are exceptions, but generally, hirsutism is a heritable trait.

2. Corticosteroid medications (steroids)

Using steroids is the leading artificial cause of hirsutism, especially when it’s being used in huge quantities for recreational purposes. You may also experience beard growth while using steroids medically, according to a doctor’s prescription, but that’s a bit rarer than its recreational use.

If you don’t want beards, avoid steroids.

3. Old Age

Again, not all women experience hirsutism as they age, but most women with this condition will only start experiencing it during their old age, usually after childbearing age.

4. Overweight

Obesity stimulates androgen production in women, which in turn, may lead to the growth of beards on the face. Again, not every overweight woman will grow a beard, but if you’re chubby, chances are that you’ll get some beards to match.

I recently compiled a gallery of the best hairstyles for overweight and women over 40, do well to check it out, if this is something you’re interested in.

5. Change and Development in Body

Yeah, body change and development can also contribute to the growth of facial hair in women.

And I totally agree with Madam Stephanie who contributed to this part.  You can read the comment section and see what she got for you.

Is Growing Beard In Females Reversible?

Hirsutism is very treatable, but the treatments will not remove existing facial hair. Medications for hirsutism work in various ways; while some interfere with your body’s internal androgen secretion mechanism, some only interact with the hair follicles and stop or reduce their growth rate.

If you’d rather not have to shave every other day to keep your beards away, you should consider seeing a doctor to find a treatment plan that works for you.

What Does the Public Think About Women Growing Beards?

Public perception of women growing beards mostly depends on the part of the world where you live. In most advanced countries where the philosophy of live and let live is very much alive, growing beards is seen as no big deal.

On the other hand, most third-world countries and even some remote areas in advanced countries see women growing beards as a taboo, and the idea is widely frowned upon.

However, public perception only matters if you care about what the public has to say. A more relevant question would be: what do women with beards think about growing beards?

The answer to that question is a bit more informative. With The Guardian reporting that around 40% of women with visible beards felt uncomfortable in social situations, it’s pretty clear that it’s not something that a lot of women are proud of.

If your beards make you comfortable in your own skin, go for it by all means. On the other hand, hf you’re part of the uncomfortable 40%, you should consider following the steps in the section below to learn how to remove beards for women. 

How To Remove The Beards In Females

Removing facial hair has to be a manual process in females, but stopping regeneration is almost always medical. If you don’t want your beards to come back, here are some solutions you can try.

1. Electrolysis

Electrolysis is the safest way to get rid of facial hair permanently, and it works for both males and females. The procedure involves using an electric current to pass heat through the hair follicle, permanently destroying it from the base.

2. Medication

Medication isn’t as quick as electrolysis, but it’s the most effective way to stop the root cause of beard growth in a female. The medication could be to deactivate the hair follicles or to stop the excess secretion of androgen; either way, the result is typically a partial or complete removal of an individual’s facial hair.

At What Age Should I Start Removing My Beards?

You can start removing your beards as soon as they become noticeable if you’re uncomfortable keeping them. However, if the beards make you comfortable, why remove them at any age to begin with?

Pin for Later.

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I believe that I have cleared the question of the day.

Now I would love to hear from you:

Did you find our article on why women grow beards helpful?

Or maybe you have something to contribute to this article.

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I am Stanley. A Unisex Hairstylist, Writer, and book lover. After 12 months of the apprenticeship program as a stylist, I started working with my boss for an extra one year. This time frame made me accumulate knowledge and experience in the hair industry, of which I will love to share with friends all over the world through my blog.


  1. Thanks for another informative website. Where else could I get that type of information written in such an ideal way? I have a project that I’m just now working on, and I have been on the look out for such info.

    1. Thanks for your kind words. We will continue to work hard to provide you with the necessary hair information you deserve.

      Hope to see you soon again.

  2. I enjoyed your article because I have had facial hair growth for quite some time now. But I believe you left out one probable cause of facial hair growth in women and that is “the change” or menopause, which is when I started having facial hair growth. Also, in your article called “Best hairstyles for overweight and women over 40.” I was disappointed to see that there were no pictures. Or were there pictures, but they just didn’t show up?

    1. Hi Stephanie, I really appreciate your time and comment.

      It’s beyond helpful. I will be doing more writing on topic with your feedback.

      As for my article on Best Hairstyles for overweight and women over 40, I am truly sorry you couldn’t find any picture. Actually, the pictures are there, but the lazy loading command which I use to boost the speed of this website probably delayed the images.

      So sorry about that, I will work on that ASAP.

      Once again, I appreciate your feedback. Hope to see you around next time.

  3. I have a birth defect (that is similar to Polycystic Ovary but not the same) which causes my adrenal glands and my ovaries to pump out testosterone like mad. I produce 10 times more testosterone than a normal woman, and 3 times more than a normal man. Since I was in my 20s I’ve grown a full beard and mustache and by full I mean I could double for ZZ Top if I don’t watch out! My endocrinologist is one of the best in the country and he says if my birth defect had been caught sooner we’d have been able to get it under control. As it is I don’t grow hair on my legs, and never have, I can’t have children as I don’t ovulate because of my birth defect, I’m bald on top of my head and grow a beard.

    Saying “If you’re over 40 let it grow” is easy enough to say, but in all honesty there’s quite a bit of ridicule for a woman with facial hair, more so if it’s very thick than if it’s thin. I’ve had people ask me if I’m transitioning (I am not lol), people have asked if I’m a man or a woman, one woman told her kids to get away from me when I was playing with my niece and nephews at the park. I’ve had people flat out make fun of me, some within my husband’s family, some strangers, and some were my first husband’s friends. I donate plasma twice a week and before covid I would be told to come back clean shaven as I made other donors uncomfortable with my facial hair a few times. For some reason a woman with a beard seems to make people uncomfortable and nervous. I move through life without caring now, but that’s because I’ve dealt with my condition for over 20 years and so have grown a thicker skin about it.

    I think something to remember, especially if you have a condition that makes you grow facial hair as a female, is you are beautiful no matter what. It’s the inner beauty that shines through, and if people can’t handle that then that’s their problem not yours.

    1. Hi Danielle,

      Thanks for stopping by, and I really appreciate the time you’ve spent to write down this valuable comment.

      I totally understand your point. But most times, it boils down to choice and accepting the hair as blessing. I know this lady that taught me back then in School, for one day she never shaved her beard.

      At first we the students were not too comfortable, but overtime we started seeing her beyond the beards.

      Like you said, Women with facial hair should always remember that they’re beautiful no matter what.

      Thanks once again for your time Danielle.


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