Your beard should enhance your face and be a source of admiration instead of disgust. Men with unkempt beards are quite unsightly to look at. Before even growing a beard, you should find out what it takes to care for one.
Growing a beard
All facial hair should be shaved prior to starting your beard. This way, all the hair will grow at the same time. Next, allow your beard to grow out for at least a month before you start trimming and shaping your beard. If you notice places where hair has not grown out, growing a full beard may not be for you. Instead, consider growing a mustache, a goatee or side burns.
Trimming your beard
Once you resemble Grizzly Adams, it’s time to have your beard trimmed. The first trimming should be done by a professional barber to make sure that the shape is symmetrical. Once you have your beard shaped by a pro, the next time it grows longer, you can trim it on your own.
To care for your beard:
- Buy a beard and mustache trimmer. Look for a high quality trimmer that is easy to use and cordless. It should have an adjustable trimming guide for precision. Wahl and Andis, Braun and Philips are some of the big names in beard trimmers. Get a fine toothed comb as well.
- Shampoo your beard at least every other day. Although you can use the same shampoo (and conditioner) that you use on your head for your beard, make sure it is mild enough for the face. Better yet, use a shampoo specifically formulated for facial hair. Beardsley, Bluebeard and Healthy Beard all make shampoos for beards.
- Use a mild conditioner to soften your beard when necessary. Do this if you are always out in the sun. Chlorine makes hair coarse and hard, condition your hair if you swim often.
- Always towel dry your beard well and comb it flat. If you have a long beard, always keep it tangle free.
- Trim you beard when it is dry. When hair is wet, it is more relaxed and may appear longer. Make sure to trim a little hair at a time. Maintain the symmetry of your beard.
- Use a mustache trimmer or sharp scissors for your mustache. Start at the center and trim going toward the edge. There should be no hair over the top of the lip. In grooming your moustache, make sure to use a fine tooth comb.
- Remove any stray facial hair for a cleaner look.
- Use only dyes specifically made for beards. You can color your beard with commercial dyes. Read and follow the instructions on the package. Just for Men makes beard and mustache dyes in different colors. When in doubt, have your beard dyed by a professional.
- Have a professional barber trim your beard if it no longer appears symmetrical. This way you are assured that it will be shaped correctly.
Maintaining a beard takes commitment and patience. Good hygiene is important when you have a beard. Your beard frames your face so make sure to trim it neatly. It should also smell great all the time. When necessary, have a professional barber trim your hair to make sure it is symmetrical.