So you’ve chosen to embrace facial hair at its fullest – the beard. Watching it grow over days, weeks and months, it’s like a new limb, a brand-new part of you that means more than you thought it could. Ok, so maybe we’re being a bit dramatic, but for many men, growing and cultivating that perfect beard is a big deal, a right of passage even. Whether it’s a goatee beard or a chin strap, a good beard that is well-maintained is the key to getting the reaction you want from your loved ones, friends and the wider world.
Now it’s reached optimum length and it’s ready to be shown off to the big wide world, what kind of reactions can you expect? Are beards attractive? Do other people think it suits you? Do women like beards? Let’s look at some of the common reactions…
1. You look older!
Now, this one isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Some men crave looking a bit older and a beard can often help add to that effect. A lot of men who shave off their long-standing beards are often surprised at how young they look without it, so if you want to add a few years, the beard can help.
Depending on the style you go for, you can change up your whole entire style! Check out this blog we put together about choosing the right beard style to get inspired.
2. Ooh, doesn’t it itch?
Lots of people will react to your beard with questions and queries about how it feels, whether it’s itchy, and how easy it is to maintain. Of course, with the right preparation and products, you can tell them that no, it doesn’t itch and yes, it’s really easy to maintain!
A lot of people might assume that having a beard means it will be full of bacteria and bits of food, which would contribute to an itchy face (Roald Dahl’s The Twits anyone?). In fact, the complete opposite is true – a survey of male hospital workers found that more bacteria was present on clean-shaven participants than those with a beard. Sort it out lads. Invest in a good beard oil to keep things smooth and soft, and a beard moisturiser can help reduce any irritation which could lead to itching.
3. Wow, you look so manly
Beards have long been seen as a pretty blokey addition to your overall style, so don’t be surprised if you suddenly get comments about how rugged you look. Of course, there’s a fine line between manly and Stig of the Dump, so make sure you tame your facial hair with a high-quality beard balm to keep it sleek.
A study from the University of New South Wales found that men with 10-day growth were deemed the most attractive by women – and were even thought to have better potential as parents than those with shorter beards and stubble! So, you may notice a few more glances your way.
One of the coolest elements of having a newly-grown beard is the change it can have on your fashion choices. Every outfit is automatically given a hit of hirsute machismo, which means the same old clothes from your wardrobe get given a new lease of life.
4. It really suits your face
Good beards elicit positive reactions, and these stem from your choice of beard. Of course, there are dozens of ways to trim and style your facial hair, but not every style suits every face shape and haircut.
To get a compliment for your new beard, try and keep to the styles that work with you rather than against you. Do some research into beard styles and products that can help you maintain the look you love.
5. Ah, I used to have a beard…
Beard envy is definitely a thing, and a good beard brings that out in men you may think have been clean shaven for life. The older generation may see you and be transported to a time when they let their facial hair roam free, possibly inspiring them to give the look another go for their autumn years.
Not only that but seeing a beard that look great and adds some real style to a man’s overall look is what has brought the beard back into the mainstream in the past few years.
6. How can I get mine to look like yours?
Moving on a bit from the beard envy, we have beard inspiration – and that’s definitely where you should aim to be. Seeing a beautifully soft, well-trimmed and lusciously soft beard can give other men the push they need to embrace a trend that shows no signs of letting up.
A lot of men wonder what their other half might feel about a new beard – well, you won’t know until you try it! You’ll probably have asked yourself a number of questions before you decided to let your manly whiskers grow through. Queries like: “Are beards hot? Will my girlfriend love it or hate it? How can I keep it looking good?” Well, now you’ve got one, you can answer all those questions for other people.