My first piece of advice is to let your lovers know that you’re planning to grow an awesome beard, and that you will be subsequently scratching the holy hell out of their face. Generally, they’ll get used to it after the initial sprouting and things will be okay, but be forewarned– there will be blood. Well, probably not blood, but certainly some mild irritation. Every once in a while you’ll encounter someone who is all about the baby-faced shave-job—Oh yes, these anti-beard fascists abound. Find out before you get too excited for your face forest, just in case it’s a deal-breaker. Cool? Cool.
Let’s start with you guys making a promise to me that you’re going to say no to sloppy beards. Letting your beard grow and grow without direction is a classic rookie manoeuvre. Quality over quantity. You should probably not make the same mistake I did—
Jump back many years—*Wayne’s World jazz-hands wipe— doodle-ooh, doodle-ooh, doodle-ooh*— I was in the process of growing my first beard. Naive, I had gone a few months without shaving and grooming. I sincerely thought it was going great. It was only upon inspection of a new photo ID that I realized the beard, in fact, made me look like a product of the unholy union of Charles Manson and a bag of pencil shavings.
For 6 years, I was cursed by that photo and the humiliation of a sloppy insane beard. So don’t be ridiculous. Resist the urge to look like Samuel L. Jackson in The Caveman’s Valentine. Conversely though, if you’re in the market for a terrorist or a homeless maniac look, then this is most definitely a route you should explore.
Beards do not groom themselves. Go buy an electric razor and learn to love beardscaping. An electric razor lets you choose how long your beard is kept. You can sort out the length that looks best on your particular face, and stick with it. Without the electric razor you can choose between no beard or all the beard. This seems like common sense, but for posterity’s sake, I’m telling y’all an electric razor is a necessity.
Case in point—I recently had a friend who had grown an awful beard and didn’t understand how exactly it differed from mine. His had a dishevelled and stressed-out depressed dad of a beard, while mine was a wealthy bachelor in a hot tub full of babes. I asked what type of electric razor he used and he stared blankly at me. Knowing is half the battle.
Alright, you’ve bought an electric razor, and with a few days of stubble, you’re diving chin first into a beard growing adventure. You’re already looking more manly and rugged, and are on the right path, but what comes next? Simple: Shave your neck!
Nothing quite ruins a top-notch beard like gruesome neck hair. Anything below the jaw-line needs to go. This is the easiest and most effective way to make your beard look suave and slick. If you take only one thing from this article, may it be that I hate neck hair and if you don’t shave it I hate you. Do the right thing and get rid of it!
My final piece of advice is to be aware that you now have a beard. You will get BBQ sauce in it, but don’t fear the sweet n’ smokey embrace– accept and own it. Get beard-deep into your rib dinner and love every minute of it, but also recognize your beard as the food-magnet that it is. Don’t forget to give your beard a solid scrubbing on a daily basis. If done properly, your beard will be the sexy flower that draws the honeys in like bumblebees (may it be just as fragrant).
These simple but effective tips will get you started off on the right foot and get your beard looking the way you want it to. Good luck to you, my fellow beard cultivators. Believe in your beard, and your beard will believe in you!