Are you wondering why is your beard red and black even if you only have brown/black hair? Or maybe you have some ginger and few blonde hairs here and there and you really wanna know if it is normal and how to fix it…
If that’s the case, you are in the right place!
Red and orange are very strange colors for a beard, right?
The first thing I want to mention is that if your beard has turned from brown or even black to red you are not alone. In fact, there are thousands of men worldwide that face the same exact problem.
Also, most probably you aren’t doing anything wrong!
Many people have dark brown hair both on their heads and also on their beards but still, they grow some copper hair here and there and we will soon tell you why.
In short, your beard is turning red or you just have some red hairs on your beard because of your genetics. The color of our hair is multifactorial but the most common factor that affects hair color is a gene called MRC1(melanocortin-1 receptor). Both brown and red genes can be expressed at the same time.
However, if you do have both genes the brown will ”win” but that does not mean that the other gene doesn’t exist at all.
In this article, we will discuss why is your beard red and black in detail and we will also talk about the ways to fix this problem.
Let’s get started!
Why Is Your Beard Red And Black? Biology Of Hair Color
Before, we discuss what we can do to fix the color of our beards it is very important to deeply understand why that is happening to us, if it will be temporary and so on.
We will tell you some facts so that you can understand the situation but we won’t make it too tough and tiring for you. Don’t worry.
First things first, genes are responsible for everything in our body. Our appearance, behavior, health, everything. Genes carry the traits, the characteristics that your parents pass on to you.
Every cell has about 30,000 genes, and every human being has 30,000,000,000,000 cells. Yeah, I didn’t get it wrong.
You get an idea of how complex the human body really is, right?
Moving on, some of our characteristics can be controlled by more than 1 type of gene. For instance, 2 parents have brown eyes but their kid has blue eyes. How does that happen?
The color brown on our eyes is a dominant trait. That means that if let’s say I have 1 gene for blue eyes and 1 gene for brown I will most probably get brown eyes.
If two parents have 1 brown gene and 1 blue gene each, their child will get a) brown-brown or b) brown-blue or c) blue-blue because children get one copy of their genes from their mom and one from their dad.
In the first two occasion, the child will have brown eyes and in the last one blue.
This is a very simplistic way to explain our eyes’ color but it 95% accurate, I don’t want to take it too far with the exceptions, etc.
Now, let’s come back to facial hair.
Imagine that the gene for red hair works in a similar way as the gene for blue for our eyes. Like eye color, DNA ”decides” the color of your hair. The gene for red hair is recessive, it needs 2 copies to be expressed. If you have 2 genes of red hair you will have a completely red beard.
Let’s go one step further.
In general, the color of our hair is determined by both the amount of melanin and the ratio of eumelanin(black pigment) and pheomelanin (red pigment).
This ratio is determined by a protein called MRC1 (melanocortin-1 receptor).
- Dark hair men: mostly eumelanin
- Redhead men: mostly pheomelanin
- Blonde men: low on both
Now, stay focused.
The role of MRC1 is to help the production of a protein that converts the pheomelanin into eumelanin (red to brown)
If both your copies of MRC1 (mother and father) are mutated, as you can understand, pheomelanin can’t be converted into eumelanin!
So, you have a red hair look!
If both genes work you are definitely brown or black-haired. But, what happens if one of the 2 copies work and the other doesn’t?
Yeah, this is you!
If one copy of MRC1 works and the other is mutated you will have mostly brown hair because brown is more dominant (powerful) but red is not going anywhere!
In some areas of your body, you might see red hairs among brown or black. I have also seen a single hair to be half blonde-red and have brown. Strange stuff!
Genetics is so much fun!
At least for me! (Because of my degree) I know many things about biology and DNA and I can talk A LOT more about these but this is more than enough for you.
If you have understood everything, you should be proud of yourself.
Let’s move on!
Well Tasos, I do have a brown-red beard, what do I do? How I fix this?
Read Also: Why Does My Mustache Have Different Color Than Beard?
How To Fix A Beard That Has Turned Red
If you ask my opinion, there is nothing wrong with being different. There is nothing wrong with being bald, tall, short. No one is perfect.
I really hope beard is your only problem in life!
You have to understand this. In general, accept yourself as it is. No one will treat you in a better way than you. You should be the first one to care about yourself.
You are handsome, gentleman!
But anyway, if you still wanna change your beard back to brown or black getting rid of the red/orange/ginger/blonde hairs this gene might give you there is only one solution.
And no shaving your beard is not a solution. You wouldn’t be here if you wanted to shave your beard, we are a website about beards!
In short, the solution is obviously to dye your beard. And in your case it won’t be that hard because you won’t change your color completely. Let’s say a white or grey beard to black. This would have been more tricky.
But, dyeing some red hair and bringing back your natural color is much easier. We have a ton of articles about dyeing a beard, dyeing a beard black, dyeing a beard naturally (coffee, henna, black tea, etc).
There are many ways to do so.
If you ask me, I would use a beard dye close to my natural color which in your case is brown or black probably. You can also use the natural ways but they are short-term solutions and therefore I don’t like em.
Read Also: How To Remove Beard Dye
But if you are a guy with a very sensitive skin don’t hesitate to dye your beard naturally.
If you think that dyeing your beard and getting rid of red hair will boost up your confidence go ahead, guys!
Frequently Asked Questions
Read Also: Can You Dye A Beard With Hair Dye?
Other Factors That Affect Hair Color
As we have already discussed hair color is mostly affected by genetics.
However, there are also some other factors that affect facial hair color secondarily such as:
- Exposure to UV light
Exercising and eating the right way is very important not only for our beards but also for our overall health and appearance.
Stress is another factor that makes hair change color. There are many men that observed changes in their hair color and density after stressful events in their lives. (job security, a loss of an important person, etc)
Finally, UV light up to a certain extent is able to change hair color. The higher your exposure is the lighter your hair color will be.
Best Beard Dyes
I won’t mess with a ton of products and reviews. This is not the point of this article.
But, I would like you to have a general idea of which are the best beard dyes for men in case you ever need them.
#The best one Just For Men Mustache & Beard
#Runner Up Grizzly Mountain Beard Dye – Organic & Natural Dark Brown Beard Dye
Why is my beard red and black?
Having some ginger or red hair in your beards simply means that you have 1 mutated MRC1 gene. Therefore, your beard is brown or black for the most part but it also has some copper hair.
There is nothing wrong to it.
We tried to explain why this is happening as simply as humanly possible. Most terms aren’t scientific and that is on purpose.
Apart from the MRC1 gene, a secondary role in hair color play your nutrition. stress levels and exposure to UV light.
Read Also: Why Is My Beard a Different Color Than Hair
The best way to get rid of these scattered red hairs is to dye your beard.
You can also just accept it as it is cause in reality you look great and different.
And that’s really it. I really hope you found our article helpful.
If you have any comments or questions don’t hesitate to write them in the comment section below and we will be more than happy to help.
Until next time,
Tasos Moulios is the founder of Beardlong. He loves trying different beard and hair styles and blogs about them. The tips he shares come from his own experience and love for what he does.