How to Shape Your Beard Without a Barber
There comes a time in every beard’s life that it will require some kind of “shaping.” Barbers are great and all, but sometimes you don’t have the time, patience, or desire to give another brother control of your beard.
They say if you want something done well, then do it yourself. You grew the beard yourself, so you should be up to the task of shaping the beard. Here are some ways you can shape it for personal style, needs and comfort.
Shaping for Style
A lot of guys completely mess up on the neckline. If you’re growing any longer beard you don’t need to worry about the neckline at all. Keeping that grow-out long will add volume and thickness to the rest of the beard too.
Just remember that wherever you shave your neckline, there will be an additional area of weekly upkeep. If you so choose to do so, then use an electric razor and a comb to line things up accurately. Get into that goldilocks zone: not too high and not too low.
Also, it is worth mentioning that trimming the neckline is most important at the start of a young beard. Anywhere past a few months is going to spell trouble and not be worth the effort.
Another shaping concern is the upper cheeks. Most guys want to avoid that strange werewolf look that creeps precariously close to their eyelids. This can be easily shaved off starting from the inside of the face and working out towards the cheeks. Be very careful not to cut into any larger area of your beard.
If you do happen to shave into the cheek don’t fret and don’t try to even it up more- you may ruin it. Let it be. It will grow in seamlessly if it was a minimal cut.
Tools of the Trade
Keep your beard oiled up before going in. We’ll be using some tools of the shavers, and if you’re not a trained stylist there’s no need for an ivory handled roaring 20s razor. All you’re going to do is mangle your face, while the spirit of your much manlier great grandfather rolls in his cosmic grave.
These tools will take care of your neckline and cheek grooming needs.
Start by using a clipper with a guard. It’s pretty self-explanatory once you’ve got it in your hands. A clipper can help to take off the bulk of a beard if you’re going for a shorter style. Start with the longest option if this is the route you want to go. Then start cutting!.
- For minor shaping, your scissors over comb will be the best technique for precision shaping.
- Take your comb and comb out your hair.
- The hairs which fall through the comb should be all equally cut to the same desired length.
- (Optional) Use the trimmer over the comb if you want a brisker cut.
If you’re growing a full beard, you’ll want to give special attention to that little area between the hair on the top of your head and your beard. Sideburns – a lot of bearded men forget about this area and let the mutton chops run wild. Trim these down to be equal with your head hair. This is the most likely spot to get out of control first.
Shaving some stubble and excess areas of growth is the easy part. What gets really hard is shaping the volume and length of the beard.
Unruly Growth Elimination
A major problem you’ll run into is runaway hairs on the sides (cheek/sideburn areas) of your beard. What happens a lot of times it that the beard gets tangled and these drapes of hair swoop down. They begin to look unruly and thin.
The best course of action here is to cut these and even them out with sheers. First, begin by combing out the hair and only cutting off a minimal amount. Then you can get to shaping by taking less than a quarter inch each time. It will take a while, but you’ll thank yourself for it later.
This begins to even out the hair and gets rid of any split ends. Yes, those are a thing with beards. Your beard won’t feel as dry, and the root of your beard will continue to grow out a fresh facial sprout.
If you’re adept with your clippers or comb, look to create a nice taper from the sides. It’s a great way to blend the hair and easy to do with your trimmer. Start with just taking a little bit of hair between your hairline and beard. Over time you’ll develop the knack for cutting down and blending for the perfect length.
By adding this into your routine once a week, you’ll eliminate any beard trimming mishaps. Under no circumstances should you restart a beard because of a runaway razor or stray cut. If you do mess up beyond belief, then try to salvage your beard and go for a shorter look if necessary.
To recap, the key ingredients to shaping a beard are:
- Being careful
- Having the right tools
- Knowing what areas need trimming or shaping.
Anyone can master the tools after a couple rounds grooming your beard. Make sure to stock up on the best products for your beard, so those hairs can bathe in fanciful facial paradise afterwards!