To trim, or not to trim...
Many beardsman have a LOVE/HATE relationship with the idea of trimming. Just like getting a hair cut, it can be a stressful process. One wrong move and you've lost months (or years) worth of growth!
The most common mistake by beardsman is not following the 10 laws of trimming!
10 Laws Of Beard Trimming
1. Slow Down
Never attempt to trim any part of your beard if you are in a rush. Ever.
Set aside a block of time dedicated to your trim and take it slow.
2. Don’t Trim Wet
When your beard hair is wet it has more weight and will appear longer than it will actually be when it is dry.
If you trim wet, when it dries it will shrink up and your beard will be uneven so only trim when it is fully dry.
3. Clippers vs Scissors
This comes down to personal preference and what YOU are most comfortable with.
Even though it will take a little more time, I prefer scissors as I love the control they provide.
You know that saying, “measure twice, cut once?” Start small as you can always trim further, but you can’t add it back.
Again, take it SLOW!
4. A Proper Neckline
***ATTENTION*** This is the single most common beard trimming mistake. Too many guys ruin their beards by trimming too high.
Your jawline is NOT your neckline
If you trim your beard on your jawline it will make it look like your beard shrunk and is entirely too small for your face. You want to trim your beard where your neck meets your head.
This is bad, very, very bad!
Here is an example of bad neckline to make this very clear:
His bottom line is much too high and his cheek line is much too low causing his beard to look much too small for his face. This will only look worse as it grows out.
This is good, very good!
Much better neckline here. Notice how it is trimmed where his neck meets his head and his cheek line is in a much more natural, higher position. His beard is much more proportionate and full.
5. Comb the Opposite Direction
This will separate the hairs and expose any uneven areas in your beard.
Your beard will grow at different speeds in different areas so check to make sure each side is balanced.
Depending on your preferred beard style (which we covered earlier), you may want to have certain areas of your beard shorter than others depending on your face shape and the desired style.
6. The Stache
My general rule about a mustache is: The bigger the beard, the bigger the stache.
I always advise using scissors on a mustache of any length. If you want it off your lip, simply take the scissors and cut what’s resting on your upper lip.
For a shorter mustache, you can use a trimmer with a guide as an alternative. My advice is to always start with a number higher than you think you should just to be safe.
7. The Cheeks
Depending on how high your cheeks grow in, you may want to clean up your cheek line to add a little more of a defined beard.
You want to create a line connecting your inner sideburns across to your mustache.
Warning* Do not go too low. A very common mistake is taking this line too low. I do not want you shrinking that beard into a chin strap so again, take your time.
If you have a round or square face, you’ll want to trim the hair on your cheeks shorter than your chin. This will keep the sides tighter and elongate your beard giving you a better overall shape.
Comb it out as stated in step 5 and simply cut little by little to create a slow fade. Ideally, the length will be shortest at the sideburns and slowly fade longer towards the chin in a gradual manner.
Keep an eye on it and trim the strays that take away from the shape. Just remember not to overdue it. If you continually trim you’ll never add any length!
9. Made a Mistake?
If you’ve made a mistake, our advice is to step away.
DO NOT try to fix it on the spot if you are upset. Trust me. Beard trimming takes patience and you’ll only be in a rush and likely make it worse.
Simply step away for a bit and come back once you’ve settled down.
10. See a Professional
If you don’t feel confident attempting this on your own, we suggest you see a professional barber for your first big trim.
But this isn’t as easy as you might think. Professionals make mistakes (all the time!).
Following any of these steps will dramatically improve your beard, but following all of them will ensure your beard is always looking its best.
If you need further explanation about anything or have any feedback, we’d love to hear from you!
We are always here to support you in any way possible so don’t hesitate to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook. Keep it growing and as always,
Live Bearded Brother!