Beard Grooming Defined & Explained: Useful Tips For 2020
So you’ve finally grown a full beard. If you’ve followed my previous beard grooming advice, you left it alone for a few weeks before even thinking about touching it. But now it’s getting scruffy and you’re getting impatient to rock your favourite beard style.
If you don’t know where to start to groom your beard the right way, you’re not alone. Back in the day, our fathers and grandfathers didn’t give it too much of a thought. They let it grow naturally and shave or trim when it got too out of control.
But in the last few decades, tools, products, and techniques have been developed to allow men to sport a beard that is not only good to look at, but also healthy and soft. In short, you won’t get to see your best mane until you start grooming it properly.
Find below all you need to know about beard grooming. Learn about the tools required and developing a routine that works for you.
First Things First: Healthy Skin and Hair Routine
I’ve said this many times: you won’t reach your beard goals without showing it and your skin some love.You won’t reach your beard goals without showing it some love. Click To Tweet
First of all, keep it clean, but not squeaky clean. You should wash your beard with gentle soap (or even better, a beard shampoo) a couple of times a day. Harsh soaps that leave that ‘squeaky’ effect are to be avoided because they strip your hair of its natural protective layer.
Exfoliate your skin. This is particularly important for those with beard dandruff, but everyone should exfoliate at last once a week to eliminate dead skin cells.
Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise. Both your beard and the skin underneath deserve protection and nutrition. Find a natural face cream that doesn’t clog your pores and doesn’t irritate your skin.
There are tons of moisturising beard products out there. Believe me, it’s madness. Creams, balms, butter, conditioners, oils, and much more. You can try them all out and see what works for you but it will take some trial and error.
The two essentials, in my opinion, are conditioner and oil. A good beard conditioner will help you with combing (more on this further down) and prevent wet hair from breaking.
Beard oils help to restore the natural oils you lose when washing the beard. They are fantastic products, in my opinion, because they can work on many fronts at the same time: they protect your beard from damage, feed it good nutrients, keep it soft to the touch, and leave it smelling great.
Figure Out a Beard Style That Works For You
Now that you finally have a full, luscious beard, it’s time to have fun with it. Research different beard styles and try to find out which one works best with the shape of your face. Of course, a professional barber can help you do that.
As a rule of thumb, a great beard style will highlight your best features and soften or even hide problematic areas. Have you got a rounded babyface or even a double chin? Rock a style with strong lines and clean-cut margins. Long face? Focus the growth on the sides.
Pay special attention to the neckline — shaving too close to the neck can make you look way heavier than you actually are.
The Proper Tools For Beard Grooming
Right, so you’ve got the raw material and a goal in mind. All you need now is the right tools to get you to the finish line. Here are the essentials:
Brush and Comb for Beards
Yes, as mentioned above, you’ll need to comb your facial hair. Do it to assist in the trimming, and do it every day before you go out.
Different beards will need different combs but in general, a wide-tooth comb and a narrow-tooth one are the must-haves. There is then a world of moustache combs, pocket combs to groom on the go, and more.
Combing will make sure to eliminate tangles (and therefore, avoid breakage) and also make you look nice and smart instead of scruffy and shabby. Finally, it will help you spread products properly so that all your hairs get some love.
Some people are surprised that beard brushes exist at all. However, they have many benefits including stimulating blood circulation, eliminating dirt and distributing oils properly, and taming morning beard in a few strokes.
Brushing is not for everyone, though. If your beard is very short there is no need, and you could even end up irritating your skin. It’s also important to find the right brush (boar’s hair is a favourite while plastic is a no-no) because a harsh brush will create damage and split ends.
Facial Hair Scissors
If you have a long beard, you’ll need these. Scissors are not for changing your style radically but rather, to make small adjustments and keep rebel hairs at bay. It may be scary at first, but after the first cut, you’ll get used to it and become a pro. Just don’t overdo it.
The Right Trimmer For Your Beard
There’s a sea of options when it comes to trimmers. A good trimmer can help you achieve a variety of looks (although it’s usually not ideal for very long beards) without having to see a professional. It will really save you time and money.
The type of trimmer you need depends on your beard, your goals, your personal preferences, and your skills. Of course, some features work better for everyone, like going cordless.
A beard trimmer with multiple guard heads will make it easier for you to work gradually and leave more room for error. Feeling fancy (and maybe a bit lazy)? Some trimmers have a built-in vacuum that will keep you from making a mess in the bathroom.
Best Beard Trimming Tips
To finish this guide off, we’re getting to the hard part, the actual trimming. Here are some things to keep in mind when trimming your beard at home and sculpting that irresistible look:
- Don’t trim wet hair. Wet hair is weaker and can easily break. Moreover, a wet beard will look longer and it’s therefore easy to overcut it.
- Especially if you’re not 100% confident and sure of the style you want, start with a higher guard and work your way down.
- Different trimmers have different guard measurements. Find the one you like on your trimmer and stick to it.
- Avoid neckbeard. Shave everything below the neckline.
At the end of the day, it’s all about trying different techniques and styles. Generally, a polished appearance works best for most people, but some men can rock a scruffy look. Either way, developing a skin and beard routine is the best first step towards the beard of your dreams.