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The “Bit More Than Stubble” Beard

The “Bit More Than Stubble” Beard

A few years back big beards were a big thing. In vogue models like Ricki Hall, Billy Huxley and Christopher John Millington teamed meaty, gnarly beards with super tight haircuts and the trend went from niche to mainstream seemingly overnight.

Many times since the media have raised the question “have we reached peak beard?”, but the number of guys donning facial furniture seems to continually grow like house prices.

However, big beards can be a lot of work. Although they may look as if they’ve just been left to run wild, often they require regular shaping to keep you looking more like a model and less like a pirate.

Then there’s the skin underneath said foliage. If you’re lucky enough to have dense facial hair then you’ll probably be used to using a myriad of products to keep your face in check, from beard conditioners to oils to balms.

For this reason, after the various lockdowns and subsequent closure of barbershops offering beard services, we’ve noticed a lot of guys swapping their free flowing fuzz for shorter styles. Whilst not wanting to ditch the beard completely, many have gone for the “Bit More Than Stubble” beard.

It’s a look that’s been rocked by many a celebrity too – from Henry Cavill to Chris Hemsworth to David Beckham. And who are we to argue with those levels of handsome? Here we’re going to take a look at how to get this stylishly low-key look at home.

Differ the lengths

Although it may look as if this type of beard is the same length all over, it’s still more flattering to leave it slightly longer at the chin and slightly shorter at the sideburns. It grows out better and gives your face a more masculine shape.

In the barbershop we often use a grade two or three through the chin and moustache and a one through the sideburns, before blending through with the guard(s) between on the cheeks. It’s a subtle change but makes all the difference.

Domestic beard trimmers are often set in mm rather than grades, so for reference a grade one is 3mm, two is 6mm and three is 10mm.

Go for soft edges

Because this style is meant to look relaxed, it’s better to go for softer edges rather than sharp lines.

To achieve this avoid using a wet razor through the cheeks and under the neck and stick with the clippers.

Under the neck it’s best to start with a zero (no guard) towards the Adam’s apple and finish an inch or so beneath the chin with the same length as at the longest point of the beard. There’s a bit of a knack to doing this yourself in a mirror, but once you’ve mastered it you’ll never look back. And so you shouldn’t, obviously.

A good hack is to go for a semi-circle shape with the highest point of the arc being under your chin. Ask your barber to show you next time you’re having a trim in the salon.

Though it is a softer look, this type of beard can go from looking effortlessly chic to unkempt pretty quickly.

Once a week should be enough to keep you looking your best, and it’ll take less time if you do it more often too. Win-win.


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