A long beard symbolizes masculinity. However, it requires proper maintenance and without it, you would have a bunch of unruly strands of no significance. To grow a long beard, you need to stop shaving. Nevertheless, it does not mean you cut down its maintenance.
Maintaining a good-looking beard requires quite a bit of trimming from time to time. In addition, you need to be diligent about what you actually want to achieve with trimming. Here, we will go through a step-by-step easy-to-follow guide on how to trim a long beard.
Table of Contents
A pair of old scissors is not enough to efficiently trim a beard. Here are some of the tools you need at hand to trim your beard:
- Beard Trimmer & Clippers: To shape the edges of the beard and sideburns.
- Thicker comb: These combs are specifically designed to detangle the hair.
- Mirror: To monitor the trimming
- Sharp Scissors: Special trimming scissors are available for long beards that provide finer control than regular scissors.
In addition to these, you would also require some hair products such as beard oils and aftershave solutions.
A steady hand is a key to perfect trimming of beard. A shaky hand can cut the hair irregularly and can be more problematic on the edges of the beard. If you are skeptical about your technique and performance while trimming, I would recommend going to a barber and get the thing done by a professional.
However, if you want to do it yourself and feel confident about it, here are the steps to follow.
Step 1 – Washing the Beard
A long beard often has dust and food debris stuck in it. To make the process easier, wash the beard before trimming. Apply a little bit of shampoo and lather it. Let it stay for 2 minutes and then rinse with fresh water.
Step 2 – Dry and comb the beard
Dry the wet hair with a hot air dryer and comb the beard. Always comb the beard in the direction of hair growth. This will expose the messy hair and would make it easier to cut them.
Step 3 – Trimming of beard
Trimming of the beard can be carried out by a pair of scissors or by a razor. However, generally, trimming with the beard trimmer is a bit difficult but it is more efficient.
On the contrary, with the scissors, it is much easier, but not so efficient. On regular days, trimming with scissors might be enough but, for special occasions, it is recommended to use beard trimmers or clippers. In this guide, we will go through both methods.
a) Trimming with scissor
Symmetry is key to perfect trimming, therefore, always remember to cut an equal amount of hair from both sides. Otherwise, your beard would look out of shape which is not what you want.
Make your way up and keep trimming till you reach sideburns. The degree of trimming is purely your choice. However, no matter how little you want to trim the beard do not cut it in a single stroke. Make small cuts and repeat the process until you get the desired size. This will make sure that you clear idea after each cut of how much you still need to go.
b) Trimming with Beard Trimmer/Clipper
Trim your hair lightly with a beard trimmer. Always start with longer guards and if it is not working go down shorter guards gradually. Before trimming further, decide how long the longest area of your beard would be. Start the further trimming with the guard of the length required for the longest part of the beard.
Start with the jawlines and chin and then gradually move to the sides of the face and cheeks. Stretch out the skin when you are trimming below the jawline to make a precise and better cut.
Go down a guard or two for the cheek line but always start with the longer one. The guards of the clipper help in cutting the hair evenly. A higher degree of symmetry and fineness can be achieved by razors because of these guards.
Here is a tip, if you think that you have reached peak beard and want to maintain its length. You can easily achieve this with an adjustable beard trimmer. Finding the perfect length may take some time. However, try different settings of clippers to get the perfect length and remember the settings.
Step 4 – Trimming the sideburns
Trimming the sideburns is comparatively easier than trimming the beard. Comb out the sideburns towards the cheeks and cut all the hair growing out. Comb out the sideburn again but this time in towards the ears. Cut the hair from that side as well to make the sideburns even.
Step 5 – Neck Lining
People with a longer beard don’t really require a neck lining because it is not visible because of long hair. However, if you do want to make it I would recommend you to use a razor for this purpose.
Imagine a curved line from ear to ear, set the lowest point right above Adam’s apple. Define the length of your jawlines and chin. Make the rough lining with the scissors. Make it neat with the help of the razor or shaver.
Use the guards of shorter length for the bottom of the neck. There is an option to take out the guards of the electric razors to make the jawline more prominent.
Step 6 – Trimming the mustache
You can also trim your mustache with either scissors or an electric clipper. However, the best outcome is achieved by using scissors.
Brush out the mustache in the direction of their growth. Make the cuts with scissors. Do not make the cuts under the nose always make the cuts along the upper lip. Carefully cut the edges of the mustaches so that they blend with the beard hair.
After properly making the edges. Comb against the direction of the grain and cut the desired volume of hair.
For Trimming with a clipper, brush out the hair in a similar way. Make an upward stroke using the guards of lower length to trim the mustache. Repeat the process until the desired size is achieved.
To make the shape of the mustache more prominent use the clipper without the guard. Carefully trim the edges of the mustache.
Step 7 – Finishing Up
Proper finishing of the beard is very important. Remove all the stray hair using scissors. For hair of shorter size use an electric shaver to remove those from the cheeks and neck. Cut the hair growing out from the nose and ear.
Always apply aftershave when you are done with trimming. Wash the equipment and beard again. Dry the beard and apply beard oil to replenish moisture to impart shine to the hair.
Tips for Long Beard
- A lot of people try to dictate the direction of their beard growth and in most cases, it does not work. A long beard is like water, it makes its own way. Your beard will tell you the direction it wants to grow in.
- Trim your beard at least once every week, however, it may vary depending on the growth speed of your beard
How To Shape a Long Beard
Let the beard grow
This first step to shape the beard is to allow it to grow. If you have decided to keep a long beard you cannot just dictate its direction of growth. You would need to resist the urge to trim or shape the beard for at least six weeks.
When the beard has grown now you have a variety of shapes to choose from. Do not go with the shape which is against the direction of your beard growth.
The shape of a beard that matches your face shape imparts a good impression. When you allow your beard to grow you can select the shape that suits your face. The selection of the right shape would make you and your beard look better.
Trim the beard
Once you have decided the shape of your beard. Now it is time to trim it in the way you want. The basic trimming technique is described in the section above.
a) Shaping Sideburns
While shaping the beard pay special attention to mustaches, neckline, and sideburns. Most people ignore this area because they believe it blends with the beard. This is not true. Sideburns connect your beard with the side of the head.
You need to shape them in such a way that it looks a smooth transition from your hair to the beard. You also need to consider your hairstyle before shaping the sideburns.
b) Shaping mustache
The same is the case with the mustache. You do not trim it rightly, it can ruin the beard shape. The length of the mustache can be determined in the same way you determine the length of the beard.
For a perfect shape, the mustache should not cover the upper lip. You cannot use a trimmer on the upper lip and this is because of the curve of the upper lip. Scissors are the best equipment for this purpose.
c) Shaping neckline
The neckline is another important part of shaping your beard. The perfectly shaped neckline makes the beard look more natural. On the contrary, if you do not pay due attention, it may look sloppy and would ruin the beard’s shape.
To shape the neckline properly, you need to have a clear idea of where the cutting should start from.
Maintain the shape
After shaping the beard the way you want now, it is time to keep the beard like that for the entire day. A lot of products including beard balms are available which can hold the mustache and beard in place. These products also keep the beard hydrated and soft.
Before applying these products make sure the beard is clean and dry. You can apply a little amount of these products with the comb to last the entire day.
Scrubbing of beard
Washing of beads is important especially during the early stages of beard growth. Cells of the skin are easily aggravated and cause itching. Scrubbing of the beard twice or thrice a week would fill out the hair and would help maintain the shape.
Trim some areas regularly
This is an essential step if you want to maintain your style and shape. To train the beard you have to trim some areas daily or every other day. Run the beard comb or brush through all the hair of the beard and align them. Train them to follow a specific direction.
After combing the hair trim all the loose ends to maintain the shape of the beard.
Use hair supplements
In order to keep the shape of the beard intact, you need to feed the hair. The hair does not only require protein and fats, but it also needs vitamins. Use a good hair supplement that contains all the right ingredients. It will feed the hair follicles with everything they require. This will make the beard hair strong and healthy.
The above was an easy-to-follow guide on how to trim a long beard and how to shape a long beard. The basic point is to know what you want to achieve with your beard. If you know your desired shape and length, the rest is a routine you can easily follow.
I hope the guide helps you with your beard grooming rituals. We tried to make it as simple as possible. However, if you still have questions, do ask us in the comment section and we would love to respond.