‘My beard started growing at 13’

Dakota Cooke

Dakota Cooke has spoken about how she learned to love and embrace her facial hair. 

Cooke, who describes herself as the “sideshow freak, bearded lady, long-lost daughter of Elton John and Miss Piggy” to her more than 32,000 TikTok followers, can grow a full beard.

The social media influencer has been growing her beard for the past seven years, and tells PinkNews: “It does not take very long to grow”. 

Cooke has had facial hair since she was 13, but recalls being forced to hide the hair on her face for a long time. 

“My stepfather had a friend who said to him: ‘What’s going on with Dakota, she has about as much facial hair as I did in high school’.

“That bothered my stepdad, so he took me to a hairstylist who would wax my face once a month. That experience harmed my self-esteem.” 

Cooke says that at such a young age, people are vulnerable, which made it more difficult to endure, but at the age of 23 she decided to embrace her true self. 

“I wasn’t a fan of hiding who I truly am,” she adds. 

Embracing her facial hair has led to negative comment online, with some people describing it as gross. 

“It’s just hair, who cares? I’m a big believer in acceptance through education and people are never going to learn to accept something unless they can be educated about it.” 

And to any haters, she says: “You need to take a good look at yourself and ask why does this bother you so much. I’m just living my life and you have some weird problem with that. 

“I feel better than I’ve ever felt in my life,” she says of now allowing her facial hair to grow.

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