How to Choose the Right Beard Style For You
There comes a time in a man’s life when he must make one of the most important choices of all: What style of beard to wear. It’s an exciting task, but it can be intimidating. You can choose from hundreds of different kinds of beards, and each will look different on your face than they the way they show up on other men.
In the end, you can’t really know how you’re gonna feel about a beard until it’s right there, staring back at you from your bathroom mirror. Hope you’re ready to get a little experimental! If you want to pull together the look that’s perfect for you and your face, there’s no better way to find a sense of direction than to get scientific about it.
Question 1: What length do you find comfortable?
Even before you begin your journey of beardscovery, you should be able to figure out the answer to this one easily enough. Do you want to go long, or do you keep it brief? Some beard styles lend themselves better to lengthier whiskers. A full beard or a bushy set of mutton chops work best when they get some growth behind them, and that means they’ll require a bit of commitment. You need to be dedicated to their growth while also getting used to the feel of a bushier mane.
Does that work for you? One relatively easy way to find out is to go a week or so without shaving. Do you dig the results, or do you find yourself annoyed by the fuller growth? If getting some length gets in your way, maybe the jumbo-length approach isn’t for you. Instead, you’ll probably want to go for a look that manages to be noticeable without taking over your face.
Not every beard has to be an epic mane that reaches down to you chest! Don’t feel like you need to force yourself to live with a look that makes you uncomfortable unless you’re simply determined to adopt that look. Find the length that works for you, and use that as the starting point for your new style.
Question 2: What’s appropriate for your job?
Sometimes, your choice of beard style is so much about what you want as it is what your boss will allow. There are plenty of professions that still maintain strict rules about acceptable forms of facial hair for the workplace. Sometimes this makes sense. You don’t want a belly-length chin-warmer creating hazards while you’re working with dangerous machinery or food prep! But sometimes, it’s just the result of an outdated mindset. There’s no reason an accountant or programmer shouldn’t be able to sport a mighty mountain man mane… but it’s also not quite worth losing your job over.
Before embarking on your beard project, you’re going to want to have a chat with your human resources department to get a clear read on what’s office-approved. More importantly, you’ll want to find out what’s specifically forbidden. If you find yourself experiencing choice paralysis as you try to single out a perfect beard look, knowing what you can actually grow while still taking home your monthly paycheck can go a long way toward steering you right. You may not realize just how much (or how little) wiggle room you have when weighing your options.
And don’t be too discouraged if the employee handbook nixes your dream look. Even if you can’t grow the exact style you had your heart set on, we know you’ll figure out how to make even a runner-up style selection work for you.
Question 3: How much upkeep do you want to deal with?
No matter what beard style you pick, you’re going to need to do some maintenance to keep it looking perfect. Some styles demand a whole lot more grooming than others, and you’ll definitely need to factor that into your plans. If you’ve never grown a beard before and find yourself struggling to settle on a beard choice, you’ll definitely want to keep in mind the amount of time you’ll need to spend keeping your whiskers in ship-shape as you sort things out.
Take a soul patch, for example. It’s one of the easiest styles to take care of! A soul patch is a barely-there beard, a little tuft of hair growing directly beneath your lower lip and tapering away as it reaches the chin. Maintaining a soul patch simply means shaving the rest of your face clean while keeping that tiny patch trimmed.
Now compare that to a short boxed beard, which demonstrates just how much more involved things can get. A short boxed beard has to be constantly shaped and trimmed. You’ll want to give it a shaping trim several times each week. If you let your routine slide, your look will make an unhappy transformation from tidy to shaggy after just a few days without maintenance. The specific trimming routines required for different beards can be a make-or-break factor in finalizing your look!
Question 4: Are you willing to experiment?
The best thing about choosing a beard style is that you’re never locked into a single option. Once you ponder all the questions above, you’ll still have plenty of choices to pick from, no matter what your answers turn out to be. It takes two to four weeks to get a sense for how most beard styles are going to look on your face. That’s plenty of time to find something you dislike about it.
And if it doesn’t work, that’s OK! If you’re not feeling what you’ve grown out, shave it down to bare skin and start again. As long as your whiskers are still sprouting, your face will always be your canvas. Why not have a little fun and try a bunch of options? Even styles that might seem out of your wheelhouse may turn out to be a perfect fit once you see them in the flesh, as it were.
Not only will growing different kinds of beards change how you feel about yourself, they’ll also change how others see you as well. Exploring different looks and how they play out with the people around you can be a lot of fun. It’s a journey worth taking.
Just remember that finding the perfect beard to match your face will be a process, so don’t get discouraged if things don’t go as planned in the beginning. You may experience some struggles along the way, but you know what they say: No pain, no gain. It’s important to learn the basics of how to grow a beard, and to figure out a routine you can handle. All it takes is time, commitment and dedication. We have no doubt you have the skills to tackle the path ahead. And don’t forget—The Beard Club always has your back. We know you’ll find that life-changing look soon enough.