You want to grow a beard but you keep hearing about the problems (some more exaggerated than others) that newbies tend to have when deciding to hang up the razor for good. We’ve compiled the five common pitfalls to give you an awesome advantage in growing your beard problem-free and itch-free
Avoid trimming your beard (and also avoid doing it yourself if you don’t have the confidence in your barber skills—a trip to the barber can save you time and embarrassment or disappointment). It looks simple enough, but getting your beard trimmed might take longer than you want it to, and it’s a job that deserves careful attention to detail—your beard is going to be one of the first things people notice about you when they see you. Play it safe and do beard trimming after work or before bed, wake up early enough to guarantee yourself that you have enough time to do it well, or head to the barber shop and forgo the DIY element altogether! A full set beard is the best and easiest beard to maintain overall and gives men the most masculine look. Its also easy to trim away facial hair in excess of a fist by grabbing your excess hair and cutting it away neatly.
Your beard is essentially a permanent facial hair fixture on your face and you need to keep it clean. The bad news? Your typical face wash isn’t going to cut it. It’s hair, after all, and it’s going to need a bit of care if you really want it to look great. The good news? There are tons of amazing beard care products out there: beard soap, shampoo, conditioner, and oil are the staples you need in your beard care kit. Keeping your beard hair clean will not only make your beard look amazing, it’ll also take good care of the sensitive skin below it. A well-conditioned beard is a healthy beard, and that’s what you want on your face when you walk through the door at work, the bar, and everywhere in between.
It sounds counterintuitive, because if you’re trying to grow your beard out, daily maintenance might seem a bit too much. But there’s an important reason to do regular moisturizing: Your beard is going to absorb your skin’s moisture and dry out that area. For some men this happens faster than others. That is going to lead to a lot of itching, scratching and related issues that you don’t want to have. Pay close attention to beard hair that grows faster or slower than the other places in their beard. Because a lot of hairs may grow at different rates, new growth will need some moisturization to avoid the itchiness. An itch-free and problem-free beard is an important step in your journey to growing a longer beard.
While they both serve the same function, beard moisturizer is more of an everyday product, and beard oil is best used for longer beards and works best after washing the beard with beard shampoo (3-5 times per week rather than daily). Using the beard oil after washing your beard (and skip past the air-drying stage) will help seal in the moisture instead of letting it evaporate! Make sure to read the instructions for any products you buy. This will help make your product stash last longer, and will also prevent you from walking around with an oily beard after getting a little overzealous with the beard oil in the morning.
A common problem with DIY beard trimming and shaping is that it’s easy to get carried away shaving the neckline. If you shave it too high, it won’t cover all of the skin that a beard normally covers, and the stark contrast between freshly-shaved skin and full beard will be particularly eye-catching. Instead, look head-on in the mirror and draw an imaginary line across your neck, starting at the top of the adam’s Apple. No shaving above this line! Not only do you want to shave lower down than the jawline, but you also need to go in a slight dip (think of the line that forms the smile in a smiley face). A straight line will still look curved because your neck is basically a cylinder shape. However, a slightly curved line will look straight, which is what most men are aiming for. Trimming in the general jaw-to-neck area might be necessary, so don’t neglect the area entirely, but keep the full-on shaving below this line in order to keep your beard looking full and healthy.