The Grooming Guide: Finding the Right Facial Hair

For men, growing and styling facial hair is one of the most recognizable forms of self-expression. Although you should never judge a book by its cover, you can tell a lot about a guy from the way he presents and grooms the hair on his face. A scraggly and unkempt beard usually signifies a man who has no regard for the opinions of others, while a clean-shaven fellow is often serious-minded and professional.


The art of cultivating and grooming facial hair is known as pogonotrophy. While countless circus sideshows have featured bearded ladies, the practice is generally reserved for men. In many cultures around the world, men who engage in pogonotrophy are considered to be both wise and virile. The average male begins developing patchy, bristly, or bushy hair on his face during puberty or adolescence, although boys as young as 10 have grown facial hair.Once the hair has fully developed, it can be completely shaved off or styled into a variety of different mustaches, beards, goatees, and sideburns.

Choosing the Right Style

Some guys can pull off any style of facial hair, but this isn’t the case for the majority of men. When considering your options for facial hair styles, you should take into account a number of factors that will affect how you look.

  • Hair Growth:Your natural rate of growth and density of facial hair play an important role. If your whiskers tend to be patchy and slow-growing, attempting to cultivate a full lumberjack-style beard may not be in your best interests.
  • Face Shape: Certain styles are better suited for certain face shapes. A pencil-thin mustache just doesn’t look right on men with round faces, for example.
  • Personal Style:Your overall look and style, including the clothes you typically wear and the hair on your head, should match the type of facial hair you’re going to grow.
  • Local Area: Depending upon whether you want to fit in or stand out in a crowd, consider the facial hair styles prevalent in your local area and choose accordingly.

Once you have taken these factors into consideration, you can begin to explore the vast world of facial hair styles out there, from mustaches to beards to sideburns and everything in between.

Clean Shave

For a preppier or more professional look guaranteed to impress the middle-aged executives in your company, you can completely shave all the hair off of your face. This basic style is simple to maintain as long as you don’t mind full shaves every day. If you choose the classicDon Draper look, you might consider investing in a high-quality electric razor to provide the smoothest shave possible. Check out for a wide selection of these stylish tools.


Over the years, mustaches have alternated between being scorned and held in high regard. Thanks in large part to the hipster movement, a variety of unique mustache styles are back in vogue. In addition to the traditional mustache, you can choose from many different types, including the horseshoe (or biker) ‘stache famously worn by wrestling legend Hulk Hogan or the elaborate handlebar style made famous by ‘70s baseball icon Rollie Fingers. Halfway between a mustache and a beard lies the muttonchop, a domain that few men – aside from the immortal LemmyKilmister of Motorhead – have had the temerity to tread.


Just as there is a wide range of mustache styles, there are a variety of beard types available if you prefer to have more hair on your face. Beard styles are differentiated mainly by length, ranging from scruffy five o’clock shadow to the aptly-named yeard, which is the result of going a full 365 days without shaving or trimming the hair on your face. Depending on the style you choose, beards require the highest maintenance of all facial hair styles since you should try to keep them clean and well-groomed for hygienic purposes. If you don’t want to commit to a full beard, you can grow a goatee, which consists of hair on the lip and around the mouth paired with a cleanshave on the cheeks and under the chin. Goatees were massively popular in the ‘90s, and it’s only a matter of time until they are back in style.

As you’re deciding on the proper facial hair style, take your time to think about the message it will send to the world about you. Once you’ve made up your mind, rock that look and don’t let anybody stop you from expressing your true self.