Recent Blog Articles
Heart disease risk: Partnering on lifestyle change can help
Can wearing contacts harm your vision?
Vegan and paleo: Pluses and minuses to watch
Postpartum anxiety is invisible, but common and treatable
Right-sizing opioid prescriptions after surgery
Ready for your routine medical checkup?
Nicotine addiction explained — and how medications can help
Is your vision impaired? Tips to cope
Misgendering: What it is and why it matters
Healthy brain, healthier heart?
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.
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?
To continue reading this article, you must log in.
Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School.
- Research health conditions
- Check your symptoms
- Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
- Find the best treatments and procedures for you
- Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
I'd like to receive access to Harvard Health Online for only $4.99 a month.Sign Me Up
Already a member? Login ».
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.