It’s not enough that nearly every bollywood actor and stylish athlete is sporting a meticulously groomed beard these days – now even CEO’s in corner offices are bristling. Here’s how to do it right.
Look in the mirror. If you’re like me, you’re probably staring at some stubble – growing wherever the hell it damn well pleases, a touch splotchier than you’d like. You shave one day, let your hair grow in for a week, maybe two, then you mow it down and start all over again. This is the Stubble Cycle. You’re trying to have your beard both ways – there, but not too there – which means that you just look like you’re coming off a drunken bender. As my father often yelled at drivers who obliviously sat at a green light: piss or get off the pot. Man up. Try the beard. It’ll take a month, maybe two, to grow in – but then you will look in the mirror again and you will see a new man, a hairier man, a prouder man.
Some men have facial hair that’s old enough to drink, but true connoisseurs understand that beards are gloriously impermanent. Athletes break them out for the IPL season. Jon Hamm seemed to grow one after every season of Mad Men – as if going full Bigfoot were his true resting state – then shaved when the show started shooting again. Point being, a great beard doesn’t have to live forever. It can just be a break from the usual. Facial hair is cheaper than a whole new wardrobe, less fraught than a radical new haircut. You might decide to shave off your beard six monthlater. Or you might fall in love with the resting-Hamm look and keep it forever.
The secret to a pro-grade beard is a pro-grade neck fade. And look, here’s pro barber Miles Elliot of Freemans Sporting Club Barbershop in NYC on how to do just that Step 1 “First, trim your entire beard to the desired length before you begin fading,” says Elliot. (See “Get into Gear” on the right for hardware) Step 2 Start your neck fade by using the 2 or 3 guard to trim from your Adam’s apple to where your jaw meets your neck. Then use the 1 or 2 guard to trim from the Adam’s apple up about an inch or so. Anything below the Adam’s apple should be as hairless as a baby’s bum. Step 3 Tidying up the cheeks is a delicate dance. With the guardless trimmer, eradicate the outliers. “You don’t want a line so sharp that your beard looks like a chin strap,” says Elliot. In beards, as with breasts, natural is always better. Step 4 “Last, clean up your moustache by trimming any hairs growing over the lip,” says Elliot. You’re a man, not a walrus.
In a good way. Have a weak chin? Charlie Brown head? A burgeoning beer gut? You can offset it all with facial hair. Seriously. “A beard hides your face shape, so you can create your own,” says Alex Josue, barber at Baxter Finley Barber & Shop in LA. Here, advice from Josue on how a wellsculpted beard can lead to a less ugly you. The Problem: Bowling-ball head “Let’s say your face is very round,” says Josue. “You want to introduce more angles to it, so trim the cheek line” – from your ’burns to your ’stache – “to a slightly more drastic slant than grows naturally.” The Problem: Square hair “The high and tight haircut with the short, cropped sides is trending now,” says Josue, “but it makes the head more square, right? I like to offset that with a beard that’s kept short with rounded edges.” The Problem: Beer gut “For someone who’s stockier, bring in the sides of the beard,” says Josue. “Just trim straight down from your ears and cheekbones so that part’s slightly shorter than your goatee area.” The Problem: Scarecrow body “If you’re tall and lanky, you don’t want sharp points or angles in your beard, or you might look like a super-villain,” says Josue. “Keep everything natural and more rounded.”
Know what separates the bearded weirdos from the bearded heroes? Upkeep. You don’t need a laser-guided vacuuming trimmer – just a few key tools Kent / Beard Comb Two benefits: It’ll get all the hairs moving in the same direction. And it’ll make your hands feel huge. Wahl / Stainless Steel Li+ Trimmer Thanks to an adjustable guard and a lasts-forages battery, this is your primary weapon in tending a beard. wahlgrooming.com Honest Amish / Beard Balm A tiny bit of this all-natural stuff will tame big wiry beards so you don’t look like you’re fronting a ZZ Top cover band. amishbeardcare.com Kiehl’s / Beard Oil Rub in five drops to prevent dryness (your skin thanks you) and to soften your beard hair (the ladies thank you). kiehlsindia.com – Kristen Dold
Source of article: gqindia.com