Excessive Body and Facial Hair in Women

Welcome to our Health Decision Guide for women who are concerned about excessive body and facial hair (called hirsutism).

By answering a short series of questions, you will learn about the most common reasons for hirsutism.

The guide is intended to provide information. It is not intended to make a specific diagnosis; nor is meant to replace a face-to-face evaluation with your doctor or other health care professional.

Click here to start.

Approximately 10% of American women believe that they have more body hair than they should.

There is great variation in hair pattern in different ethnic groups and in people from different parts of the world. Mediterranean women and those from the Near East and India tend to have more body hair, but this is completely normal for them. Asian American and Native American women tend to have less body hair, and that pattern is normal for them.

There is also variation between families that should be kept in mind in deciding whether hair growth is excessive.

Do you have more body hair than your female relatives?

Yes, I have more body hair than my female relatives.

No, I don't have more body hair than my female relatives.

The amount of hair an individual has is strongly influenced by one's family and ethnic background. The best index of this is the similarity of the individual to her own family and ethnic peers.

Learn more about hair removal.

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