From the "work-to-weekend" beard to the "yeard" popularized by athletes like James Harden, there's a look here for your face.
Adam Hurly 1 / 6
Your face is a canvas, and your beard is the paint. Well, texturally, it’s more of a paintbrush, but that defeats the metaphor.
Basically, it’s up to you how to shape and style the beard, so don’t screw it up. There are numerous styles worthy of consideration, but before we get to that, here’s a beard-growing PSA:
Not everything will look good on you. Somewhere out there, an optimal beard style is looking for your face, and when they meet, your testosterone levels will max out, or at least your confidence will soar. Either way, it’s imperative to consider your face shape before settling on a beard style. Try to make it look as symmetrical as possible; better yet, make it look as oval as possible.
If you have a square or circular face—where it is as wide as it is long—then aim for a beard that lengthens your face without adding much width to the sides. If your face is rectangular or oblong, then keep it short on bottom, and let the sides grow out a bit, to soften the natural length of your face. If you’ve got a naturally oval face, then you can try a host of styles (lucky you). Geometry aside, don’t be afraid to experiment.
Oh, also: Trim the damn thing. If you see errant strays, cut ‘em. If the mustache gets too bushy, take it down a few guards on the clippers. Keep the neckline trim—cut it below the jaw, in a U-shape that connects the two ears to a point one inch above the Adam’s apple.
The sad truth is that some guys just can’t grow a full beard; either their facial hair is too patchy, or it’s too nonexistent. Well, becauseit’s the 21st century, society has come to embrace stubble. It’s somewhere between a five o’clock shadow and a five-hundred o’clock shadow, depending on how full your scruff is, as well as how quickly it grows. With designer stubble, you’re intentionally disheveled; it’s the beard equivalent to messy surfer hair.
The transitional choice. This style says “I’m professional, but not overly so. I’m laidback, but not too much.” It’s a full but controlled beard. At a minimum, it took a month to grow, but if you kept things orderly along the way, it took an extra few weeks.
This one is simple: Some men will shave their mustache and let the beard grow fully. Or, if you’re like rapper Stalley (pictured), you might keep the mustache visible, albeit trimmed short. Fun fact, Stalley is signed to Maybach Music Group, run by fellow Beard advocate Rick Ross. Don’t worry if you aren't a rapper: This style looks great on guys with round, oval, and square faces…if it matches their edgy persona. (Which is probably why it looks good on rappers.)
A lot of those guys who can’t grow a full beard will instead grow a goatee; often times their stubble is plentiful around the mouth and chin. Goatees can look good on some guys, such as Andre Agassi in 1996, or Robert Downey, Jr. eternally. However, if your facial hair is most prominent around the orifice, try to match it with the aforementioned Designer Stubble look. The result is a patchy beard with an emphasized goatee.
If you have commitment issues, then stop reading now. Congrats to those of you still reading, both on your ability to commit and on your interest in this very long, full beard. It has been popularized by athletes like James Harden and Brian Wilson, and it takes anywhere from six months to one year to grow. (Hence the term “yeard.”) We highly recommend that you trim and sculpt it as it grows—may we suggest a good beard balm?—otherwise you’ll risk alienating those near to you.