Steve glances up over his book at
the sound of you entering the room. He
smiles. “Hey, doll.”
You stop dead. “You have got to be kidding me,” you mutter,
taking him in. He’s lounging back on the
bed in nothing but a pair of low riding sweats.
And as if that wasn’t bad enough, he was still growing out his
beard. And—God help you—he was wearing
there is a myth going on that says being bearded has to do with laziness, whereas in reality taking care of a beard can take a lot more effort and thought than staying clean-shaven. letting your beard grow is one thing, but keeping it well-groomed is another. I find it quite essential, unless someone has incredible beard genes(awesome density and coverage) or can pull off very wild facial fur. I feel like it looks better each time I grow a beard all over again, not only because my facial hair growth keeps improving a little, but I also learn how to take care of it properly.
grooming your beard usually includes combing, shaving your neck, cheeks and trimming, but can also mean using beard products like oils, beard soap/shampoos, beard balm or moustache wax. I’m not an expert here, but I’ve acquired some knowledge in the field through reading jefffs beard board, gazing shamelessly at other men’s faces on beard blogs(alright, on subway, too), giving a few friends a beard trim and, well, doing my best at growing one of those things myself. here are a few tips.
I don’t think people realise how helpful brushing or combing a beard can be. it doesn’t just make you look better right afterwards, but with enough consistency, it gives you some control over how your beard grows and lays down. before you grab a razor or trimmer to kill a beard because it started to curl in bizarre ways or has developed an odd shape, try combing it in different ways and you might decide that your beard looks fine as it is. boar brushes and brushes with some boar bristle supposedly work best. try not to brush when your hair is wet as it weakens it quite a bit. combing or brushing can be a blessing, if you already have some length, but aren’t quite there and are having a bad beard day.
2.carving a neckline/cheekline.
it’s recommended to let your beard grow a little before you define your neck/cheekline- I personally prefer a natural neckline with short beards, otherwise people tend to look overstyled to me, but that’s my opinion. staying away from the razor for the first few weeks lets slow-growers keep up and gives you a better image of what your face will look like bearded therefore helps you make a better decision. after you passed the scruffy stage and it’s getting fuzzy would be the best moment to carve a neckline. shaving your neck and cheeks can give you a nice fresh feeling, if you’re starting to feel a bit messy and unkempt.
when it comes to neckline, the golden rule says two fingers above your adam’s apple indicate where to shave your neck, but go little by little and frequently check in the mirror from a distance. how high and what shape will depend on your preference, beard length and pattern- if you have bald spots on your neck you might feel the urge to carve a higher neckline, but remember that those spots might fill in or cover up with added length. consider trimming your neck, instead of shaving it completely, if you like more of a natural look and would like to avoid sharp lines. big beards often don’t require any neck shaving or very little. most experienced growers will tell you it’s better to shave it lower than higher, you can see so many guys will high-ass necklines it hurts my bearded soul… keep in mind barbers tend to shave necks very high(which beard growers tend to hate), feel more than free to tell your barber not to shave it right below your jaw! the way cheeks work is pretty similar- try not to shave too much at first. a cheekline can compliment your facial features or mess up the proportions, experiment and try to choose a style that fits both your facial structure and facial hair growth pattern. you may decide to clean up the upper cheeks or you might find your natural cheekline your best fit.
just like the hair on you head, long untrimmed facial hair becomes weaker and gets split ends. a beard trim is done using a clipper type beard trimmer or scissors. you don’t have to necessarily take length when your beard looks messy(and combing doesn’t do the job) - another reason why the growing out stage doesn’t tend to look too flattering is people don’t do surface trimming. again, our facial hair doesn’t grow at a perfectly even pace, sometimes all we need is to trim some stubborn longer hairs growing in odd directions. try using clipper/scissor over comb technique for surface trimming and for blending(f.e. sideburns into your head hair/beard).
once your moustache starts getting in your mouth you have to decide whether to trim it or start so-called training it to the sides(combing it to the sides + pushing it to the sides with your fingers frequently so that it starts to lay this way naturally), otherwise eating and drinking will get super messy. if you’re growing a handle-bar moustache or a similar style, you have to wait for it to get long enough to curl the ends while training it to the sides. the longer, the easier it should be to persuade your moustache to lay to the sides.
holy crap, that’s a long post. I guess I’ll touch on beard products some other time.