Have you already joined the beard brigade? Or do you want to? Great! As with everything in the world of fashion and style, classic looks always roll around again eventually, and the beard is a great example. The past few years have seen an explosion in the number of men sporting beards, so much so that we could almost be living in the 1960s if it wasn’t for all of the smartphones. I personally love the bearded look, so I’ve put together a handy guide to help you to make your beard look awesome. It’s pretty simple to keep your beard looking great, but maintenance does involve a little more than just letting it grow. Here are my top tips:
Moisturize to avoid itchiness
Many men are put off from growing a beard due to the itch factor that occurs during the first couple of weeks. This happens because the hairs are poking your skin, and they can be rather irritating! However, this period does eventually pass, so with a little patience and determination you should be able to get through to the other side. One way to reduce the irritation, though, is to use moisturizer or beard oil. This will soften the hairs a little, and help your face to feel less like it’s being picked on by your beard! You should continue using some kind of moisturizer or oil daily for as long as you have your beard, as it will help to keep it well conditioned and strong.
Decide on style
There are probably as many different types of beard as there are grains of sand on a typical beach. Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration, but there sure are lots to choose from! Once your beard has grown to a fairly decent length, think about what sort of shape you want to go for. Of course, the more unusual the shape, the more maintenance may be required, so bear that in mind! It’s pretty easy to change up the style of your beard if you do find that the shape you’ve chosen takes too much effort, though, so have fun with your choice and experiment until you find the style that best suits your face. Jon Dyer from Dyers.org is on a quest to try every single type of beard, and he has helpfully documented his efforts over on his blog. This beard type chart shows some of the different types that he’s attempting. “It includes the all of the original styles, but is missing any additions that were added along the way,” says Jon.
Go easy on trimming
Oh, the number of luscious beards that have been lost due to a slip with a razor. Be careful, guys. To minimise the chance of slippage, use scissors to trim your moustache, and only trim a small amount at a time. You can always trim more off later if you need to, but there’s no way to stick hairs back on. " data-orig-src="http://blog.forthefit.com/wp-content/uploads/3449454966_79b11e54c7.jpg" alt="How to trim a beard" class="lazyload alignright size-full wp-image-142" width="300" height="181" /> If you’d like to treat yourself to a professional trim, Nicholas Karnaze from stubbleandstache.com offers some great tips on making sure you get a great cut. “All barbers are not created equal,” says Nicholas. “With the rising popularity of beards comes an increasing number of shops offering beard trims. Be selective. “The best way to find a quality beard barber is to ask someone with a well maintained beard.”
Wash every day
You may have seen horror stories & pseudo-scientific news stories recently about the sort of things that can be found in beards, but as long as you wash your beard thoroughly with soap and water every day, you should have nothing to worry about. (CITE AN ARTICLE DEBUNKING THE RECENT INTERNET BEARDS ARE GROSS STORIES ) Use a natural soap if you can, as this will prevent your beard from drying out. You can also use shampoo on your beard, which is be a good choice if your beard is fairly long. The product that you use on your head will be fine, but beard shampoos are also available which taste better than regular shampoo – which is great if you accidentally get any in your mouth!
Use styling products
A little wax can go a long way! You may decide that you want to go for the natural look, but a touch of wax – like the kind you’d use on your head hair – can help to make your beard look that bit more polished, and persuade the hair to go in the direction that you want it to.
Dye your beard
I happen to love the salt and pepper look, but not all men are happy with a gray beard. If this is you, choose a dying product that has been created especially for beards. A hair dye should work just as well, but if you only have a few gray hairs, then it’s more economical to get a kit that allows you to comb just a little on at a time in the areas where you need it.
Comb and blow dry
If your beard is long enough to get matted, then comb it on a daily basis just as you would do with the hair on your head, to ensure that it stays in tip top condition. And if you’re going out for a special occasion, or you just want to give your beard a little va-va-voom, then a blowdry is a great option! Point the blowdryer upwards towards your beard to give it volume, then point downwards to make the hair return to its natural position, before combing through, to make your beard look fuller. Finish off with some styling products to create a slick finished look. However, as a general rule of thumb, try to let your beard dry naturally after using a towel to get rid of the excess water, rather than blow drying on a daily basis. Using a blow dryer too often could cause problems for your skin.
Growing a beard takes time, and if you want to grow a full and long beard, it may be many months before your reach your goal. However, a daily grooming routine will make your beard look fantastic, even if it isn’t yet at the desired length. Add a little patience, and eventually you’ll have the beard of your dreams!
I hope these tips help you to keep your beard looking beautiful! Be as creative as you dare, keep your beard well-conditioned and properly groomed, but most of all enjoy your beard and the attention you’ll get!