Top 5 Things To Consider When Growing Out A Beard
Beards are as popular as ever, and the modern man is borrowing looks from past generations to stay stylish while maintaining a manly appearance at the same time. Men with beards used to be stereotyped, it wasn’t always as socially acceptable as it is now. Long beards, short beards, 5 o’clock shadows, goatees, sideburns, stash, the list goes on. Men’s facial hair can be modified to give just about any look desired. Most guys prefer to manage their own facial hair, give me a pair of scissors and a set of clippers and I’ll manage the trimming of my beard myself. There are the other types of guys out there that prefer to be pampered at the Barber Shop with a close razor shave, hot towel, and an aftershave lotion. For those guys that already visit the barber, here are some tips for determining if your barber is the right beard barber for you. For those of you self-groomers out there that are considering this as an option but have yet to give it a try, here are some questions you should be asking yourself and your barber before diving in and letting another man trim your facials.
1. Grow That Sucker Out
It’s hard to find a look that’s good for you if you haven’t rocked the style before. Looking at pictures online is one thing, living the look is another. If you grow the hell out of your beard you can try many different looks before trimming it back and settling on your style. Too many dudes I know start to grow it out and get it trimmed before it’s had time to age and season. Grow that sucker out and start with a full beard before trimming up and deciding on a look.
The average man’s beard will grow around an inch per month, so calculate that and give your self a timeline for your desired length. Again, don’t be gun shy! Let that sucker grow, let it come to life and mature into the facial piece you dream of it being. If there are patches that outgrow other areas of the beard that need a trim you can tend to that yourself, otherwise let that sucker fro-out like some 70’s bush!
During this time you will experience a few issues. Food will find a home in areas that it never did before, your skin will itch at times, and sometimes it will snag on things. For me, that’s usually beer cans and inner thighs, well… only if her inner thighs have whiskers. That being said, you will want to pay attention to your face bush every time you eat or drink a beer. I have had beer foam sit on my chin for hours before someone notified me that it was there. You can reduce the itch and keep your face bush looking good with some beard oils. There are a ton of them on the market, look around, ask the broski’s and invest in a bottle. Oh, and keep the teeth clean, a mug full of hair doesn’t pair well with a grill full of food and plaque!
2. Find A Barber With Experience
Every barber chair you land in has a story, there are going to be men that came before you and men that will come after you. It’s not the man in the chair that has the story to tell, it’s the man that stands behind the chair with the scissors and razor that is the storyteller. Hundreds of haircuts, hundreds of beard trims, stories told back and forth over the years, these guys are seasoned vets behind the barber chair and you can usually tell who they are. If you spend any time in a barbershop, possibly waiting for a friend or family member you will notice who has been doing this for a long time and who is still new to the game. The OG barbers are cool cats, they are smooth with their scissors and shears and can hold a conversation that keeps the time ticking by. New School cats may not have the same swag behind the chair, not as cool with conversation, and definitely not as quick to snip, cut, trim, and shave. The approach is slower, the confidence doesn’t radiate off them like it does with the OG’s. If you are looking for a hair and beard barber, stop in a shop, talk, and get a feel for the crew before trusting them with your hairdo.
Because the popularity of men’s barber shops has risen like some morning wood, they have begun opening up all over town with plenty of wannabe barbers trying to get in on the men’s grooming trend that is upon us. Because there is now a selection of barbers to choose from like never before, you will want to do your due diligence when choosing one. Trusting in a fly-by-night barber with your hair or beard can be risky. Pay attention, take your time, and find the right barber for you. I visit this barber shop in Denver to get my face bush trimmed, and they offer a me a drink while I am there! No wonder why I don’t mind paying for a monthly trim.
Also, chances are that if you are growing hair on your head and face that you might have buddies that are doing the same thing. Asking around to see where the broski’s are grabbing a trim is a good way to get a quality referral. If you trust in the bros, then ask em.
3. Once You Go Barber, You Won’t Go Back
If you are used to trimming your beard yourself it’s natural to pop in the bathroom real quick and zip off a few stragglers, if you are getting ready for a night out on the town you might even throw a #2 attachment on that sucker and take a few swipes around your ball sack because you never know what the night has in store for you. Aside from the occasional moments where the self-trim is necessary, once you get your beard cleaned up by a pro you won’t go back to the life of self-trimming. The money is always well spent, the downtime, the cut, the convo, and the input is priceless. Remember, these guys see hundreds of beard styles a month and can provide some pretty valuable information regarding beard styles that may work best with your hairstyle and color. Facial hair grows different for everyone, some can grow thick full beards, while others can barley sprout some chin hair. Some guys have patchy spots, others have course hair, others have fine hair. You need the advice of a pro to point you in the right direction.
4. Experiment Then Commit
Your beard style will eventually form out of experimentation. The longer you grow your beard, the more options you will have to experiment with. Facial hair, like the hair on your head, can become trained to lay in certain directions, spike, fall, and curl. Some guys like to braid their hair, others brush it down, while some brush it upwards. They all create unique looks that may compliment a haircut, an outfit, or the desired style. One thing I have noticed among friends and internet beardies is that once they find a style they like they stick with it for a long time. It’s easier to groom and maintain when you are consistent with the trimming and care of the beard. Commitment can be tough, but I’m not talking about a new dog or a girlfriend, I’m talking about some face bush. Grow it, trim it, find your style, and commit to the bush!
5. Get Tips And Maintenance Ideas From Your New Friend
You are going to need to treat your beard with oils, trim on rare occasions, and manage the bush without professional help on a day to day basis. Your beard barber may become your best bush faced friend and should be able to provide you with the tips you need succeed. So what should you ask your dude about the daily maintenance needed to get the most out of your beard? I would start by getting suggestions on beard oils, what to purchase, and how often they should be applied. Get combing tips, and trimming tips. Once you have locked in the style you wanna roll with, ask how often you should return to trim. If your beard is growing an inch a month on average, you may need to return monthly depending on the desired look and length. If your an older dude and need to add some color, ask about products and application techniques. Look, it’s facial hair, not rocket science, but there are things that an experienced beard barber can offer that others just can’t. You can beat experience, and a guy that trims another man’s beard can give you the kind of feedback you need to make the right decisions on this journey.