One of the most common questions that we get from people is “will it affect my progress if I shave while using minoxidil?”
The short answer is no, it will not affect the progression of your facial hair. You can shave as often or as seldom as you’d like.
The longer answer is that there could be a psychological disadvantage to shaving, as we mention in a section of the Minox Beard FAQ on the wiki.
This psychological effect is due to the way that people perceive their progression. When you shave, the hair gets cut all the way down to the skin; vellus and transitional hair take longer to grow than terminal hair, so your perception can make progress seem slower.
On the other hand, when you trim the hair with a trimmer, or scissors, the vellus is still present. This makes you feel as if your progress is fine, since there’s still plenty of hair visible to you.
Shaving will not damage the follicles. Even practices as aggressive as plucking, waxing, and laser hair surgery are not strong enough to damage follicles to the point where they cannot grow — especially in the presence of minoxidil.
A lot of people will recommend using a sharp razor when shaving, instead of a dull one, and that advice is sound. However, using a dull razor and pull the hair out will still not damage the follicles.
The downside to having the hair plucked leads back to the psychological effect. Shaving correctly will have the hair grow back out faster than if it were plucked, since the hair is still present underneath the skin. With plucking, the hair is torn out from the root and the follicle must regrow the hair.
Along with the shaving question, we also get asked if you can grow your beard out while using minoxidil. And yes, you can grow your beard out.
One disadvantage is that it’s harder to apply minox, as the intent is to get it down to the skin. By harder, I mean that it takes more time to apply.
Remember, though, that minoxidil is used by men or women that are balding. This is a lifelong process where genetics are working against them, yet they are still able to maintain and grow their head hair out despite there being many more follicles on the scalp compared to the face.
In conclusion, it’s perfectly okay to shave while using minoxidil. It’s also okay to grow your beard out. There are small downsides to each of these, so it’s generally recommended that you trim your beard if you’re looking for the best advice.
Regardless, none of these options will hinder your overall progress. Choose the route that’s best for you and what works with your lifestyle.