Men are having beard and sideburn transplants to copy hirsute looks of their favourite stars

Crown Clinic is one of the few clinics in the UK which offers beard and sideburn transplants for men.

You may have seen stories in the media of some stars having beard transplants such as Bobby Norris, who previously appeared on The Only Way Is Essex.

It may seem like an unnecessary procedure, but the fact is that millions of men have significant gaps in their beards and sideburns.

They want to be able to grow a full beard like that favourite stars such as David Beckham or Hugh Jackman but nature prevents them from doing so.

Crown Clinic’s consultant surgeon Asim Shahmalak has done several beard and sideburn transplants.

It works on the same principle as conventional hair transplants.

Hair is extracted from the back and sides of the scalp either by FUE (follicular unit extraction) or by FUT (follicular unit transplantation) and then replanted in the bald patches of the beard.

The procedure should taken more than three hours because fewer hairs are needed to patch up the balding areas than with a regular hair transplant.

For those reasons, it is much cheaper than a full transplant..

It takes between six and nine months for the new hair to properly establish itself in the beard.

A poll by Crown Clinic found that 45% of men cannot grow a full beard.

It also revealed that 59% men felt that a beard made them feel more macho.

These pictures show a former Crown Clinic patient who had his sideburns filled out with a procedure.

The patient was a 48-year-old farmer who had always felt his masculinity had been undermined by not being able to grow proper ‘mutton chops.’

Dr Shahmalak transplanted 200 grafts – there are between one and three hairs in each graft – into each of the patient’s sideburns.

Dr Shahmalak said he had seen a big rise in the number of procedures as beards have become more fashionable.

He said: “A proper, full-grown beard has been the ultimate definition of masculinity for centuries.

“But the sad truth is that many men in Britain struggle to grow beards, sideburns and moustaches.

“They have significant gaps in their facial hair and the end result can look patchy and unconvincing.

“Their problems can be easily remedied with a transplant. We can fill out the areas on their face where there are gaps and they can adopt whatever look they like: a bushy moustache, big sideburns like Bradley Wiggins or the sexy designer stubble or beards often sported by David Beckham or Hugh Jackman.”

Dr Shahmalak said that patchy facial hair was a genetic problem.

He said: “If the father had trouble growing a beard then there is a good chance the son will also have patchy facial hair.

“It is why men in Mediterranean countries often have strong beards – it simply runs through one generation to the next.”

While a beard can boost a man’s self-esteem, it does very little for his sex appeal, according to women.

Two-thirds of women (67%) said they preferred the clean-shaven look to a beard.

However, the result was a lot closer with designer stubble – with 48% of women saying they found stubble sexier than a bare face.

A further 54% of respondents said that men grow beards to compensate for hair loss on their heads.

Dr Shahmalak added: “Men often moan about that shaving is a hassle but every man craves the ability to grow a full beard. It is the essence of masculinity.

“It’s why many more men are coming to us for help.

“It helps, too, that beards have never been more fashionable.

“Men see people David Beckham and want to copy his look. He does all kinds of interesting things with his facial hair. He’ll wear a full beard one month, designer stubble the next and we’ve also seen him with a moustache and clean-shaven.

“He cleverly uses his facial hair to completely change his image – it is part of what makes him such an enduring style icon.”