Sunday, June 7, 2009

Beard Care


Most men wear beards and mustaches to enhance their facial features. Men with narrow, triangular, or oblong shaped faces find that wearing a beard creates the illusion that the face is more oval - the most desirable face shape. Carefully trimmed sideburns can "narrow" a round face or accentuate a square one.

Men with thin lips find that mustaches and beards can be designed to create the illusion of fullness. An upturned mustache can take the solemnness out of a down-turned mouth. And facial hair can draw the eye away form a receding hairline. Even those lucky guys with perfect features and oval faces find that the right beard or mustache can capture an attitude - make a statement.

Indeed, many men consider "high concept" facial hair styles - such as today's popular goatees - fashion accessories.

While the look you like is inherently up to you, there are some general guidelines you might want to keep in mind:


Narrow faces can be either oblong (long and thin), diamond (narrow at crown and chin with wider cheekbones and often prominent ears), or triangular (wide crown narrowing toward a rather pointed chin). Well-designed beards and mustaches can add the illusion of fullness to the narrow face, making it appear more oval. A roundly configured beard and mustache can disguise a narrow or pointed chin on a diamond or triangular shaped face; a broad mustache creates a horizontal line to add fullness to a thin face. Narrow faces are among the most challenging form a design standpoint, particularly when a prominent nose or protruding ears are a factor. Nevertheless, either through inspiration, experimentation, or consultation with a professional barber/stylist, you can arrive at a great look that accentuates your best features.


A round face can be "narrowed" by concentrating on the vertical planes of the face. Well-trimmed sideburns, with highly defined edges, maybe tapered into a short, squared-off beard or a triangular goatee, will draw the eye downward adding the illusion of length to the face. If receding hair or baldness are not a factor, longer hair at the crown, with the sides and temples trimmed short will also help to break up the roundness and add length. The round face benefits from mustaches of almost any kind. They draw attention to the center of the face and away from its outer circumference.


To minimize the squareness of the face, put the emphasis on beards and mustaches that are rounded in shape, and avoid sideburns. Sideburns, especially when combined with a beard, can create a "frame" around the face which only accentuates a square shape. Longer hair on the crown, sides and temples - especially if springy, wavy or curly (consider a perm) - also help to round out a square face. Most mustache work well on a square face. They draw the eye to the center and away from the outer edges.


If you're lucky enough to have an oval face, almost anything goes. Wear a mustache alone or with almost any style beard. The only thing you need to take into consideration are other features you may want to enhance or minimize - a prominent nose or ears, thin lips, a receding hairline, and so on. If your nose or ears are prominent, stick with hair and beards that are cut longer and fuller. If you have a small nose and ears you can go just about as short as you want with both. No matter what the shape of your face or configuration of your features, if you're in doubt about the look that's right for you, or want the benefit of a second opinion, consult a professional barber/stylist.


Beard hair is usually a slightly different shade than the hair on your head and sometimes strikingly so. If the difference is dramatic - and you don't like the look - have it dyed professionally. Another part of keeping your beard well-groomed and attractive is conditioning and moisturizing. Use a good conditioner on your beard every time you condition your hair. This is particularly important if you have gray in your beard. Gray hairs have more air in the hair shaft and can become very bristly and uncontrollable if they're not conditioned often. Grooming gel should also be used on your beard. It keeps the hairs in place for a well-groomed look. Of course, the most important part of maintaining a well-groomed beard or mustache is the investment you make in a high-quality trimming system. The Wahl Groomsman provides the home user with the same patented features and precise, reliable operation demanded by the professional styling community

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