The effects of


I started taking Minoxidil, better known as the active ingredient in Rogaine, at the end of June 1998, after Dyke March in S.F. Actually, I bought it after Dyke March but put off taking it for a few days because I was worried I wouldn't be able to figure out how to keep it from dripping off my face. It's a topical application; you squeeze 1 ml. into the dropper, and then supposedly drip it on your bald spot - in my case, that's my chin. It stayed on pretty well, as long as I didn't just pour it on my face. Using the dropper as if it were a paintbrush worked pretty well.

July 10th, 1998: After two weeks, I noticed my moustache getting darker. I already had some little moustache hair, like any good Italian :) I wasn't sure if it was really darker yet, or if I was just looking at it a lot more closely.

July 20: I think I see beard shadow starting down along my jawline. There were a few hairs growing out of my chin, which I had trimmed before starting minoxidil, and now they're short and bristly and growing stronger - there are more of them.

July 22: Definite stubble on my upper lip, and just below my mouth like a little soul patch!

July 25: I can feel the hairs on my cheek more, and I passed as a boy downtown when I went to get a haircut!

July 26: Definitely sprouting a lot more chin hairs - beard might even come in earlier than the 4months it said on the box.

July 27: Soft fuzz on my cheeks.

July 29: I can see little soft dark hairs all down my jawline. :)

August 3: I feel like I almost have too much beard growth - too much too fast - so I only take the minoxidil once today.

August 4: Really getting quite hairy about the face.

August 5: My skin is dry from the alcohol in the minoxidil, so I start using calendula gel to heal that.

August 8: Little hairs connecting my moustache with my goatee! All the hairs are getting pretty long. There's still lots of space between them, though, and they're pretty light and soft.

August 11: Did I have little hairy patches under my eyes before? I think the next thing I notice will be a beard.

August 12: Looked in the mirror putting minoxidil on and saw myself as a man - made me very happy.

August 13: Too much hair, so furry! Beastie beardy boy me....

August 16: Natasha noticed my beardlet at Changeling (LYRIC's trans youth group) and said it wasn't even visible two weeks before.

August 17: Cola commented on my beard growth too, said she's been watching it.

August 19: Little dark hairs especially on my chin, corners of my moustache, and connecting with my sideburns. Sort of coming into focus.

August 21: Celeste noticed my peachfuzz and was fascinated. She really wants to try it but her gf won't let her.

August 22: Love my fuzz! Cat noticed my peachfuzz and was all happy for me.

August 24: Jen and Cat, who noticed my peachfuzz when we were grocery shopping, called Mary to see if I was on hormones and if so good for me, and whether i was going to transition or not - because they thought I was joking about the rogaine :)

August 25: Bought men's electric razor.

August 29: Shaved for the first time because of a family picnic that day. Razor was $10 at walgreen's; it's crap but that could be the weak batteries as well. My face looks all clean now.

September 2-3: Some fuzziness is back.

September 7: Steph noticed the peachfuzz and gets all intrigued by the idea of using rogaine.

September 14: Back to "usual" hairy fuzziness - feeling chin hairs are darker, sideburns longer and more of them.

October 1: Total difference between the fuzzy and the bare parts of my cheeks. Little bit of a "fuzzy forehead" problem.

October 2: Totally have sideburns. The hairs are much longer and denser.

October 6: Dreamed that some women stopped me in the hall and asked me if I was a man or a woman, and got all excited to take picutres of me because I was a woman with a goatee and they were making a book or a photo spread or something of women with facial hair.

October 14: My sideburns are getting really long!

Octover 31 (Samhain): My dad comes to visit and he notices the facial hair. I told him lots of women have facial hair and they're just taught to scrape, burn, bleach, and rip it off, which is true. He didn't really believe me though, and said later that he thought I should get tested for a hormone imbalance. Ha!, I should only be so lucky!

November 6: Bought some chrysin and started taking it with androstenione. Chrysin prevents the andro from converting into estrogen instead of testosterone, which it quickly does in my body.
Mary wonders what the people at the women's hot tub (Osento) think of my hair, which I guess is a testament to how much it's grown. But nobody really seems to notice.

November 7: I'm so quizzical about my beardlet. We go to the Alameda Food Bank to volunteer - how do these total strangers see me? What is that mom thinking, and her daughter? Punky freak in a lime green mohawk and five o'clock shadow, geeze. What is it? Well? Why won't they tell me what they see? I'm sort of awkward too, trying to hide it with the straight sweet sorority girl helping us and the woman leading it all and the men carrying boxes and....

November 8: Little distinct hairs on my chin. Robin tugged on it because she didn't have a beard of her own to stroke thoughtfully.

November 9: Beard hair doesn't feel soft anymore - bristly hair.

November 10: Stripey beardlet! I really don't know what the people at work think. Do they even notice? Will they? Is it just part of my wacky personality?

November 11: Really distinctly growing facial hair; have to wonder what others think of it, even just in class. Do they see what they want to see, or is it so gradual they don't even notice?
I think my sideburns, with their longer and denser hairs, are just going to keep growing till my whole chin and jawline is like that. Cause they're getting really long, and where I was delighted awhile back cause I had hairs long enough to tug by my ears, now I have them all the way down to an inch above my chin. I'm not taking it as often as I should, either, especially since there were a few weeks in October where I was running out and then ran out entirely. I think the andro's helping but I don't really know for sure, do I?

Last updated November 11, 1998.
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