Shaving and trimming facial hair is a task undertaken daily by men around the world. Some spend hours on the business end of an electric trimmer, cutting intricate patterns and clean lines into their beards. Others run the razor across their neck or cheeks once, and make do with the results.
But one of the most overlooked aspects of beard grooming is the shaving of the neck. Many men forget their hair sprouts below their chin altogether, and others trim it so high that their beard looks like it’s been stuck on. We’ve all got different face shapes, so where should your beard line be?
We spoke to Uthman Chaima, a master barber at Pankhurst London, to find out how to trim a beard the right way.
The first hurdle men stumble at is deciding the point on their neck to which they should trim their beard line. Too low, and your neck will look furry and you’ll lose any definition of your chin or jawline. Too high, and your beard will look like it’s trying to escape your face.
A good basic plan is to trim a smooth line that passes right about your Adam’s apple, following the crease and contour of your neck. This will create a smart and polished look, without anything too daring.
Knowing how to shape a beard properly is important. The line of your jaw will obviously not be the same as everyone else’s, but it always pays to use common sense. If you’re unsure where your beard should end, tilt your head back, look in a mirror and shave it – again, above your Adam’s apple, but in a straight line.
When you put your chin back down, your neck will crease and the beard will appear naturally angled and contoured. When you look in the mirror, it should look balanced. If it doesn’t, head back and try again.
If you just want a straightforward, no-nonsense trim, stick with the tried-and-tested beard-grooming methods above to shave in the bottom line of your beard. However, if you’re looking to trim your facial hair to alter the appearance of your face itself, follow these key tips:
Differentiate your beard line depending on your face shape – for a smaller face, you should round off the corners of your beard by your jaw so your bristles don’t take over your entire face.
Those with more round faces should keep it straight on the edges, with defined corners and lines to give the illusion of a stronger, straighter jawline and chin.
Your beard should always compensate for your face, accentuating what you consider your positive features and hiding or disguising any characteristics you’d rather not bring to the fore.
In terms of beard-trimming equipment, you should be using a small trimmer or close-cut edging clippers for the best results and cleanest lines. Be careful you don’t nick yourself, and remember to always keep your lips clear.
Gone way beyond the five o’clock shadow? Here’s our selection of essential products for gentlemen with beards.
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