By the time you reach my age, the regular gent has experienced his fair share of different men’s haircuts and beard styles. In recent times, the humble beard has become less of a careless act for most guys and more of a trend-driven art, which charts a blokes ‘manly’ status in the modern world.
Through my teens, I aspired to look like some of my bearded inspirational figures, and even now later in life I still get that inspirational feeling. Thankfully, I’ve been an advocate of the full beard style for plenty of years now and like other men with beards – I’ve become pretty fixed on the idea of the ‘perfect beard’.
You know what I’m saying? A beard style that’s practical and polished without too much tedious ‘beard shaping’ or expensive beard products.
If my experiences with my ever-favoured facial hair has taught me anything over the years, it’s that when I look back to my first time growing a beard – I clearly had a lot to learn. If you want to get yourself a full set of facial hair, but also take a bit of pride in your appearance, you have to learn how to live with it.
So most men know how to grow a beard, regardless of their profession or lifestyle but it requires a little more than just putting down the razor. Here are some helpful tips for growing a beard that may help you on your pursuit for the perfect beard.
Growing your first beard may take a while
I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news but as mentioned earlier – growing a beard is not just a case of not shaving. If you want to grow a perfect first-time beard, it will take time.
I often get people asking ‘How long does it take to grow a beard?’ but there is no simple answer. In terms of time, everyone’s beard hair grows at different growth rates. If you’re looking to grow a full beard, you’re looking at two, maybe three, months.
As your beard begins to grow, you’ll get a better idea of the beard growth rate and will be able to groom your beard accordingly.
Are there any products which will help a beard grow faster?
This is a common question for many men who are growing their first full beard. You can purchase a comprehensive range of beard grooming products and beard oils, which promise to speed up the the beard growing process.
From personal experience, I have not yet found a miracle cure which promotes beard growth and in the same way diet pills don’t make people thin, beard growth products didn’t further my progression to becoming a caveman.
However, different men have different reactions to some beard growth supplements and oils. Although, I can’t vouch for it personally, VitaBeard, has a mixed reaction from consumers and won’t break the bank. It is important to consider how a healthy lifestyle and diet can help promote healthy hair and nails.
How fast does beard hair grow? Beard Growth Rates Vary
As mentioned before, beard hair growth rates vary from person to person. While some men only need up to a month to grow a full beard or goatee style, it can take some men up to a year to perfect their desired beard style. Persistence is key!
Do remember that some facial areas are more prone to growing facial hair at a quicker rate. Typically, the chin area surpasses the cheeks, so give them time to catch up before you start trimming your beard. It’s very common that bald or patchy spots may occur on your cheeks. Give them time, they’ll fill.
Trust me, nobody is going to notice them but you anyway.
Connectors and Colour
Connectors is the name given to the sections which join your facial hair from the beard to the moustache. Connectors sometimes don’t appear symmetrical, which for a first-time beard grower can be a pain but to achieve a thicker beard, you need to persist with this and groom as desired when you get there.
I found the connectors from my moustache down to my chin beard took longer than the rest of my facial hair, which can be a frustration on your quest for the perfect beard.
In terms of beard colour, you’ll notice that beards often feature a range of different tones. As someone with darker hair, I find blonde, grey, brown and red pigments amongst my dark, full beard.
A range of popular beard dyes are now available in high-street stores but a multi-tonal beard is often more sought after, than a solid colour. Plus – your beard will naturally suit the pigmentation of your skin and hair tone, so just embrace it.
Why is my beard itchy? Your beard doesn’t have to be itchy
It can be quite difficult to avoid, but some beards get a little itchy. This happens because you have shaved before you decided to embark on grizzly manhood!
Those beard hairs have been made sharp, so they can start to irritate. It does go away as it’s just part of the growing process, but sometimes it gets a bit much. How do you suppress it until then? There are a few ways.
You should always wash your beard and plenty of gentle beard shampoo’s are now available, so they won’t dry out your skin. If you wash your beard effectively, it will reduce the itch and allow the natural beard oils to work their magic.
Using some regular beard grooming products and beard oils to balance moisture and soften the beard hair follicles, might also help. Take a look at a range of beard oils, moustache wax, beard shampoo and beard conditioners on the market to help you avoid the nasty beard itch.
Can I eat and drink with a beard? Of course!
One of the darker sides to growing a beard which bearded men don’t often talk about, is getting food and drink stuck in the old beard. It sounds disgusting, but we’re only human and traces of food and drink can be left behind in your facial hair.
Not to worry though. Unless you eat like an animal, you can still eat and drink with minimal mess. Personally, I find that the best approach is to trim any facial hair that tends to overhang anywhere so that nothing gets caught in it.
Runny sauces and foods will be your beards real enemy. However, as long as you’re not reckless eater, your beard will remain mostly unaffected by food.
It is generally a good idea to invest in a napkin if you can though, just in case. If you’re rocking a ZZ Top style beard, baby wipes could be a better option. Remember – a beard wash and a good beard maintenance routine will really help keep your beard hygenic and in good nick!
I hope that some of my answers to your biggest, burning, beard questions will help you on your pursuit to growing a beard. Full style beards are definitely worth the dedication and if your beard hair growth isn’t so fast, embrace some alternative beard styles along the way.
Good luck on your journey to acquiring the appearance of a REAL man – you’ll never look back.
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Source: My own life experiences