Women have always dominated the field of physical beauty and standards with men having to take a backseat to the majority of fashion trends. Luckily, we’ve seen the emergence of a new male trait that is allowing men to come back in their own right with a vengeance. This trait is one that the majority of women cannot emulate or want to possess: facial hair. While the majority of women are known to minimize their facial hair and eliminate it at all cost, it seems men are maximizing their beard growth and other facial hair. This rise of acceptance of beards has dramatically increased over the past several years thanks to celebrities.
Ryan Gosling, Jake Gyllenhaal, Hugh Jackman, James Franco and Chris and Liam Hemsworth are some of the most popular figures of the beard movement. All range in looks that include the 5 o’clock shadow and stubble, to a lumberjack inspired beard and wild hairstyle. Overall, the majority of the looks for these particular celebrities follow standards and protocol: keep the beard clean for the audience, have a signature look and maintain a style that suits one’s facial features. Like women masking themselves with makeup products, men can as well, if they know what to do with their extra hair. And depending on the style they choose, they can alter their appearance for better or worse.
Beards are a lot like makeup; both require a skill set that must be appreciated. While beard grooming can be considered an underrated art, it is important to note the skills and processes one must follow to maintain an epic beard. First, like our faces, beards also need to be properly moisturized. A good conditioner allows for the beard to stay clean while maintaining its natural oils. General assumption would have you believe to use shampoo but that actually would strip it of its oils, which would end in split ends and less hair growth. This great article over at Liberty Grooming, gives us some great do’s and don’ts on washing and maintaining your beard. Now, just like the hair on your scalp, it is important to brush your beard once in the morning and once in the evening, preferably after applying some of your favorite beard oil or balm. If you haven’t been using one, I strongly suggest checking out Smoky Mountain Beards and picking some up. You might be able to get away with using any old brush but a quality brush made from 100% natural firm boar bristle allows the oils in your beard to be evenly distributed. It is important to treat your beard correctly as it is a facial representation of good grooming and maintenance.
Interestingly enough, beards are beginning to grow in popularity in the workplace. Like its body modification counterpart tattoo, beards are becoming more acceptable in mainstream society, so their “taboo” reputation in the workplace is beginning to dwindle. Though they’ve never been considered bad or poor taste, particular styles are frowned upon and some occupations, like the military, outlaw the practice. However, the majority of the workplaces are fond of a simple beard style within regulation. A shadow, stubble goatee and mustache are always acceptable; going further into the beard argument is gray matter. However, the biggest component with beards is knowing one’s limitations. See what your work allows, and simply abide by it.
What are your thoughts? Have you grown out your beard or do you still prefer the clean shaven look? Let us know in the comments!