Beards no longer raise eyebrows at the office or anywhere else, thanks to becoming a mainstream fashion trend among men. This is primarily due to the fact that most men who actually choose it as a part of their personality put in quite a bit of effort into caring for them and keeping them in good shape.
This seems to be a big improvement from how the situation used to be a few years back, when most of the beards you would see around you would look rather wild and in a weird shape. That being said, you can’t really blame your employer for being furious with you every time you showed up with a beard that surely didn’t look well groomed and cared for. However, something you should know about beards is that they can grow rather unevenly, and the growth and shape tends to differ from one man to another.
Things To Know Before Trimming
Well, regardless of how much you love your beard, there will come a time when you will just need to consider trimming it. We do understand that you can’t even think of getting a clean face, though, especially given that it may have took months of care to grow it.
However, one thing you must be warned about is that if you try doing trimming your beard yourself, and end up messing it up, it may turn out to be a disaster. After all, as you’re no barber, it’s far from easy to trim your beard and get or maintain the shape and look, without messing it up.
Getting your beard trimmed by a barber may seem like your best and safest bet, but this can get pricey very quickly, and why pay someone to do something that you can easily learn how to do yourself at home. All you need is your hand and one of the top 8 beard trimmers.
Go See A Barber Once, But Know The Shape You Want
This seems to be one of the biggest reasons why many end up a little disappointed with the end result after getting their beard trimmed. Regardless of how good the barber is, if they don’t have a clear view of what you want, their job may not really please you. Having said that, it’s important to figure the length that you want your beard to end up at.
Similarly, if you want a big and thick beard, you may not really want to do anything much. You can simply keep growing it and getting it trimmed just to the extent that it stays even.
Finally, it’s crucial for your barber to understand what you exactly want to do with your beard in order to help you get your desired look and shape. You may also want to carry a picture of how you want your beard to look like after you’re done getting it trimmed.
However, don’t expect your barber to help you achieve your desired shape or look every time. While they may be able to tell you beforehand whether it’s possible or not, they are not miracle workers and a lot of the end results depends on how your beard grows genetically.
One Final Expert Tip To Keep Note Of Before Trimming On Your Own
There really isn’t anything much to caring for your beard than what you already learned from reading our other article, but you may not be aware of this expert tip we are sharing with you.
Steve Purcell, who has been in the business from around a couple of decades now, says that they blow dry their beard every morning. This helps get rid of the water that may have remained in your beard, as well as straightens your beard and keeps it in shape. If you have the time, try it out!
Trimming Your Own Beard: Step by Step
This is what most of you are here for. If you have never trimmed your beard before, we do recommend that you go to a barber once for an initial trim that you can emulate thereafter. Well, once you get your beard trimmed to the right length by a barber, you can definitely do it on your own going forward. However, you would still need to keep quite a few things in mind in order to avoid messing it up and keeping your beard in a really good shape.
So without further ado, let’s get straight to the secrets.
1. Don’t let water remain in your beard
When your beard is wet, it appears longer than it actually is, which may make you go a bit too far with trimming it. Hence, it’s always recommended to avoid trimming your beard when it’s wet. You can even use a towel to dry your beard before trimming, and it may still go well. However, using a blow dryer will probably get the job done a little quicker.
2. Choosing between clippers and scissors
Now although it usually comes down to personal preferences, some people seem to be more comfortable with scissors. They give you the feeling of a little more control, as well as make the process more comfortable. It takes a while though, and it realistically does not give you the best trim as compared to the one you can get using a beard trimmer.
So if you really want to trim like an experienced barber, and achieve a much better shape and look, clippers are the way to go. You would obviously want to be a little more careful, though, as the chances of messing up are considerably high. Besides being considerably quicker, clippers also offer a significantly greater level of precision than scissors. Sure, you might want to spend some time learning to trim using clippers, but once you do, it will surely be worth it.
3. Avoid the most common mistake!
Apparently, the most common mistake guys make while trimming their beard is mistaking their jawline as if it were their neckline. This usually results in a very messed up beard. Make sure you aren’t trimming too high on your neck, and your beard is covering ( or is just above the area where your chin begins and neck ends. We do recommend you use the two finger rule when doing your neckline, as you will read under #7.
4. Find The Right Length Setting
This might take a couple of tries to get right, but you need to find the perfect length setting for the beard you want. As a general rule, start with higher lengths because you can always trim it down instantly if it is too long, whereas if you cut it too short you have to wait until it grows back.
Depending on what trimmer you use, you will either insert combs with predetermined lengths or if you own the newer style of beard trimmers, they have built in length settings which you can actually raise the same comb to whatever lengths the trimmer allows.
5. Set yourself up for a great shape
A very effective way to ensure that your beard ends up getting a great shape is to first comb it upwards before trimming. This allows you to find and get rid of the uneven areas in your beard. You can then comb your beard down again, and trim up any other areas that don’t look natural. If you do it right, your beard will attain a great new shape. If you’re going for a goatee, have a look here instead.
6. Begin from your chin and work towards your ear
The ideal technique to follow is to start trimming from your chin and work your way towards your right or left ear ( depending on which side you start ). Then, and this is important, work your way from the opposite ear towards your chin. This will be the easiest way to provide a very even trim.
7. Getting that perfect cheek-line and neck-line
A perfectly trimmed beard is all about the cheek and neck lines. This is what gives your beard a clean look, and it doesn’t take long to achieve. You have to figure out where to create a cheek-line that goes from your sideburns down to the rest of your beard. This is easy, and can be done just by looking at the mirror and following a straight line.
As far as the height of where your cheek-line should be, that really depends on preference. The one thing you want to make sure of is to take your thumb, place it parallel to your jawline, and make sure that do not go below that definition of your thumb. To even out the straight line, you can either trim or razor shave the area above it, and what you will end up with is a clean line that also enhances the overall shape of your beard.
In terms of your neckline, the secret is to tilt your head up, put your middle finger right on your adam’s apple, then your index finger right above it, and then trim everything below that index finger. Make sure you tilt your head up when you do this to get an accurate measure and to also be able to see your neckline more clearly. After that, all you need to do is follow your jawline down towards your left and right jawbones.
You may then use your beard trimmer’s stubble setting or preferably a safety razor to either trim down or completely get rid of those unwanted hairs and get a super smooth neck. If you are confused by this concept, refer to this video by the Beardcoach:
8. Maintaining your beard
Well, last but obviously not the last, is maintaining your beard so that it stays even and in shape. Even if you trim your beard as an experienced barber would, it wouldn’t take long for it to get out of shape again. You should then follow a weekly grooming schedule in order to get rid of all the strays that show up from time to time. This can be done with your electric trimmer, or with scissors to remove those stray hairs that will inevitably sprout in different directions on your face.
A final word
It still needs to be mentioned that if you don’t really feel comfortable doing the required research and putting in the efforts to trim your beard the right way, a trip to the barber is what you need to consider.
However, it’s also not necessary, especially if you make it a habit to do on your own. With practice, you’re only going to improve and do better each and every time. You would still need to gain the required knowledge and have all the right tools at your disposal, but between paying weekly for a trim, all it will cost you is $50 for a solid trimmer and $5 for a pair of scissors. It’s a no brainer.
Then, you can have and keep a beard like that of James “The Beard” Harden or Rick Ross and his #BeardGang.