How to Trim Your Beard Without a Trip to the Barber

If you’re starting to get a wee bit curious about what your face would look like with some serious scruff, or suddenly find yourself strangely open to the idea of growing out your beard in all its bushy glory, you’re in good company.

Extremely limited exposure to the outside world and its harsh “set of standards” represents nothing if not a great opportunity to experiment with a look (or a few!) you’d be hesitant to embrace otherwise, and letting your facial-hair freak flag fly is the perfect way to feel like you’re bucking a few conventions on the sly. The Hallowed Halls of the Hirsute are a wonderful place to wander, so sit down and stay a while. (It’s not like you have any other plans. Might as well post up here for a minute.)

Growing out a beard is no excuse not to keep your grooming game on point, and lockdown is also the ideal time to embrace a down-and-dirty, DIY ethos when it comes to making sure you don’t look like a bit character in a medieval period piece who dies fifteen minutes into the movie. Instead, look like the leading man you were meant to play by keeping your facial hair in check and trimming your beard regularly, even if all that involves is a simple touch-up a few times a week.

Still not convinced? We’ve broken it down into a few straightforward steps to make maintaining any sort of facial hair at home as easy as shaving it all off each morning.

Step 1: Keep It Clean and Soft

A dry, dirty beard isn’t ideal for obvious reasons. But it’s especially bad when it comes time for a trim. So keep it clean. First, wash with a beard shampoo, because your face skin is different from your scalp, and it’s best to have something purpose-built for the occasion. Then, condition. It’ll soften things up and make the next step a lot easier.

Professor Fuzzworthy’s Beard Shampoo

Beauty and the Bees


Beard Shampoo

Murdock London


Restorative Leave-In Beard Conditioner

Scotch Porter


Beard Control Leave-In Mens Styling Beard Conditioner

Billy Jealousy


Step 2: Brush It Out

After your beard dries, take a brush and run it against the grain, so that the hairs stand up and out. Not only will this make it easier to trim, but it will also highlight any inconsistencies in length.

Beard Brush and Comb

Smooth Viking Beard Care


Kent Beard Brush

Art of Shaving


Step 3: Trim

Use clippers to trim to your preferred length. (It’s best to start with a bigger guard, to prevent accidentally cutting everything too short.) If you’re looking for something simple and short, an even length all around is fine. If you’re going longer or want to give it some shape, you’ll need to complicate things a bit. Don’t worry, it’s not all that complicated.

There are a lot of ways to play with beard shape, but the most universally flattering technique requires leaving the hairs a little longer around the chin and shorter on the sides of your face. Think a number 3 setting at the temples but a 4 or 5 setting when you get to the goatee area, which you can roughly define by looking to the corners of your mouth and using those as an outer limit. The mustache, which tends to have denser hair growth, should be kept about as short as the hair on your cheeks and temples.

Oneblade QP652070 Pro Hybrid Electric Trimmer and Shaver

Philips Norelco


Beard Trimmer



Step 4: About That Mustache

Once you’ve trimmed down with clippers—try running them widthwise across your face so the guard doesn’t get caught in your nostrils—you’ll want to clear those hairs off of your upper lip. A pair of beard or mustache scissors will do just fine for that. As for how high above your lip to trim? It’s a judgment call. Some guys like a lot of clearance, and some prefer a little overhang. Start lower and adjust upwards to taste.

Razeco e10 Hair Cutting Scissors



Brow Scissors

Anastasia Beverly Hills


Step 5: Define Your Neckline

Now comes the trickiest part: trimming the neckline. The biggest way to compromise your beard is to ignore this crucial demarcation, or to trim it in the wrong place. Stop too close to the jawbone, and it will make it look like you have a double chin, even if you don’t. Let it wander too far down your neck, however, and you’ll invite comparisons to feral creatures.

The safest bet is to trim everything below your Adam’s apple, but where exactly you want to draw the line can vary a bit from person to person. Some folks have longer necks, some have shorter ones; you might need to go a little above or below the Adam’s apple for an optimal beard. But it’s still a good reference for the lowest point that beard line will dip. Then you just extend that up in a soft curve towards your ears to create a shallow “U” shape.

You still want the beard itself to wrap around your jawline and the underside of your chin, but after that it’s time to either shave everything off for a “hard stop” on the beard line or taper it down for an equally fine look that’s just a touch less severe.

Tapering requires closer and closer guards until you reach bare skin, and it’s more art than science. But if you’re looking for a basic accounting of the process, you’ll want to move down from your beard-length guard to one that’s half that length (so, a 4 to a 2), then trim up from the bottom of your beard about an inch, pulling away from the neck as you go higher to avoid a weird hair-shelf situation. Then halve the guard again, and trim up about half-an-inch from the bottom using the same technique. You can even go down to bare clippers and finesse in that final quarter inch.

Safety Razor



Barbiere Yellow Shaving Brush

Acqua di Parma


Solid Marble Shaving Soap Bowl

Beau Brummell


Step 6: Finish with Oil

Just like the hair on the top of your head, your beard needs moisture to stay healthy. So finish the whole process off with a good beard oil that’ll moisturize and help keep your facial hair looking its best. Then run a beard comb through it to distribute the oil, as well as to style your beard back into place, post-trim. This will also help reveal strays that got passed over while trimming, which you can take care of with your scissors.

Grooming Goods Beard Oil



Beard Grooming Oil

Baxter of California


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Source : Esquire