If you spend any time on beard forums on the internet, you’ll notice that there’s always some sort of ruckus concerning minoxidil and aging. Crow’s feet and sagging eye bags are among the horror stories that men share. Add in some murky collagen studies, and there’s no shortage of alarmist minoxidil truthers claiming that every beardsman should stay away from the stuff.
There isn’t much proof that minoxidil promotes wrinkles on the face. Although some studies have shown that topical medication reduces skin collagen, these investigations were not conducted on humans. There are almost no reports of face wrinkles among minoxidil users. You don’t have to be concerned about using the medicine on your face.
It’s worth delving more into what topical minoxidil does to your body and how it impacts the collagen level of your skin. Then we’ll be able to tell the difference between established facts and internet rumors.
Minoxidil and Your Body
Minoxidil, the active ingredient in Rogaine and other hair-growth products, has been on the market for decades. Countless doctors and academics have examined how it increases hair growth during that period. As of right now, that research is unfinished.
Minoxidil, as a vasodilator, opens up blood flow to the tiny capillaries that feed nutrients to follicle roots, according to researchers. This causes dormant follicles to awaken and sluggish follicles to accelerate their growth in many situations, but not all.
Minoxidil started out as a capsule-based blood pressure medicine. However, its most common hair-growth incarnation is a topical product: gel, lotion, foam, and so on. Topical minoxidil, which is accessible without a prescription, is what beardsmen use to induce beard growth on their faces rather than their scalps.
The Facts About Collagen
Collagen is a protein that your body creates on its own. Collagen comes in sixteen different varieties, the majority of which act as resilience boosters. It helps to keep skin, bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and blood vessels flexible. Collagen ensures that something in your body is active and moving.
Collagen production, like so many other things in your body, declines as you become older. Your bones deteriorate and become fragile. Your muscles start to deteriorate. Your joints stiffen, and your skin begins to sag.
If you’re not a doctor, you’ve probably only heard about collagen in the context of plastic surgery and cosmetics. Collagen products are all the rage for anti-aging, whether injected into lips, ingested as supplements, or smeared on the face.
The Collagen Panic
What’s the connection between all of this and beards? As the popularity of minoxidil for facial hair growth grows, many men are becoming aware of studies associating minoxidil use to collagen synthesis suppression. In plain English, there’s a rumor that grub reduces collagen levels. When guys on the internet gain a little information, they fall into a vortex of doom-saying.
If these people are to be believed, the moment you spread Rogaine on your face, you’ll shrivel and turn to dust.
The internet and nuanced dialogue do not get along well. Minoxidil, for example, is either a fountain of youth or a poison. So, let’s take a closer look at the anxieties and concerns people have about this medicine and how it affects your body’s collagen.
What We Know About Minoxidil and Collagen
Right from the bat, minoxidil does have an effect on your body’s collagen. This has already been shown. The extent to which this affects your skin is less apparent.
- The effect of minoxidil on collagen was studied, and it was discovered that it can limit collagen synthesis.
- These experiments were carried out on rats and cell cultures rather than on human participants. Their findings cannot be definitively connected to potential effects on the entire human body.
- Because it inhibits perifollicular fibrosis, a type of cellular scarring around follicles, some collagen inhibition is likely favorable to hair growth.
- Minoxidil has been the subject of extensive research throughout the years. Many side effects have been documented, ranging from rash to elevated blood pressure, but never increased skin wrinkles.
- Most tellingly, despite the fact that minoxidil has been in use by the general public for decades, there have never been widespread reports of skin wrinkles.
The use of minoxidil on the face, on the other hand, is relatively new. It’s possible that applying the drug directly to your face skin is riskier than applying it to your scalp. With that considered, there have been a few studies on the use of minoxidil for beard growth. They reported adverse effects, but no signs of skin sagging, creasing, or wrinkling were found.
On the Face and in the Lab
Remember the old adage: lack of proof does not imply absence. The fact that no study has definitively proven that minoxidil causes wrinkles does not rule out the possibility.
Collagen loss can be caused by a variety of conditions, including smoking, sweets, and sun exposure. For the most part, a small amount of minoxidil will not be the decisive factor in whether or not your collagen content decreases.
Finally, and perhaps most crucially, depletion of collagen is not the major cause of facial creases and wrinkles. The accumulation of frequent facial motions, such as smiling, speaking, or squinting, causes them to form.
With all of this in mind, keep in mind that each human body is unique. With minoxidil, one man may experience a lot of facial hair growth, while another may see none. Similarly, the medicine may have an adverse effect on the skin on your face. Stop using minoxidil if you detect bags under your eyes or fresh crow’s feet. A minor wrinkling isn’t the end of the world, and it’s not irreversible.
Overall, the data on whether minoxidil causes wrinkles in the face is inconclusive. While it may have a minor influence on your skin’s collagen level, it is unlikely to have a significant impact on skin pliability or durability on its own.
We propose paying attention to minoxidil’s legions of customers rather than any amateur study of inconclusive scientific material. There hasn’t been any evidence of a premature aging epidemic among these people. As a result, you should feel comfortable using these beard growth tools.
Also, a smidgeon of visible maturity isn’t the end of the world. A little face creasing and salt in your beard, on the other hand, is a fairly beautiful look.