The Right Beard Length For You


The best thing about beards, foamy-moustache funtimes aside, is their impermanence. Maybe you’ll grow one and forever shall it remain. Perhaps you’ll sample stubble and then go running for the razor. Either way, it’s a switch-up to your style that’s intrinsically transient. No two days of bearding are ever the same. It’s perpetually changing. And if you don’t like it today, yours is the power to remove it.

So for those feeling in need of an image change, facial hair is a sound investment. It’s cheaper than overhauling your wardrobe, for starters. Plus, safer than cutting your own hair and infinitely less risky than trying something ‘new’ on your head. Patchy stubble is simple to hide. A failed rockabilly pompadour, less so.

Before you start your bearded journey, however, learning to lay down the right length is essential. So to that end, whether you grow robust wire like a human Brillo pad or struggle to sprout a mere few strands, this is how long your beard should be.


What Is It?

Self-explanatory – this is a lack of shaving more than anything else, though there are ways to keep stubble looking fresh as a way of accentuating certain features.

What’s The Commitment?

How long stubble takes to show depends on the individual’s personal growth pattern, but generally two-to-five days for proper coverage all over.

Will It Work For Me?

If you do the 9-5 in an environment where this is possible, stubble is a good option if you have a larger, rounder face. By sharpening up certain lines around your cheeks, you can give more angles to your face – think of it as make-up for men. But, y’ know, not.

Men's Stubble

How Do I Groom It?

Use a trimmer on anything from 1-3mm (make sure you check which guard does this as it can differ brand to brand) and trim your beard twice a week, rather than daily, so you don’t damage your skin. Always use a light exfoliator before, or a face wash depending on your skin type, and moisturise afterwards so that your skin can handle the abrasions of an electric razor.

Men's Stubble Grooming Products

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Short Beard

What Is It?

This is your holiday beard. It only really works if you have full facial coverage, but stay patient at the early stages if not; it might look better after committing to some growth, then trimming evenly.

What’s The Commitment?

Given that facial hair grows at a rate of around half an inch per month, growing a short beard usually takes around five to 10 days.

Will It Work For Me?

A short beard works best for those with a good, even facial hair growth. If you have patchy facial hair, this will just further highlight the gaps.

Men's Short Beards

How Do I Groom It?

Use a trimmer set at 3-5mm. If you have thicker growth in some areas (the moustache, usually) go a grade shorter on that area so it looks even. Also, remember to get rid of any hairs hanging over your top lip by using the trimmers guardless. As with short stubble, you need to take care of your face here, so use an exfoliator and a moisturiser to keep it in good condition.

Men's Short Beard Grooming Products

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Tailored Beard

What Is It?

The follicular equivalent of a well-fitting suit, a tailored beard is defined by neat, full-facial coverage, but is kept trim (no longer than a centimetre at any point).

What’s The Commitment?

Around two-to-four weeks for the growth, but that’s where the upkeep kicks in.

Will It Work For Me?

A tailored beard is a good option if you work in a smarter environment. It’s a neat look, which aims to remain consistent and even all over. As such, it’s great for those looking to emphasise cheekbones or a strong jawline; inversely, ideal if you’re looking to make a small chin look fuller, or slim down a rounder face.

Men's Short, Tailored Beards

How Do I Groom It?

Use your trimmers every three or four days to achieve your desired length; taking hair slightly shorter on the areas which have fuller growth. Rinse your beard with water and dry off with a towel, then smooth down with your hands using a small amount of styling paste or a beard balm to keep it looking neat. Facial hair scissors will also help get rid of strays in between trims.

Men's Short/Tailored Beard Grooming Products

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Longer Beard

What Is It?

For guys with testosterone by the fist load (or just good genes) being about to grow a long beard in one of the perks. This is when the hair begins to properly move away from the face, looking more 3D.

What’s The Commitment?

Roughly two to three months. It’s a commitment, and there’s work to be done along the way.

Will It Work For Me?

Longer beards work for those with good, solid facial hair growth. You can use the longer hairs to create or retain good facial proportions. For instance, if you have a small chin, growing hair there helps to elongate the face; if you have a thin face, growing more hair on the sides can fill out the silhouette. Providing you don’t work with food (because beard hair nets look good on no one) this is about as long as most can get away with at work.

Men's Long/Big Beards

How Do I Groom It?

Once your beard gets to this length, you should shampoo and condition it every few days, otherwise it runs the risk of drying out and taking moisture from the skin beneath with it. Apply a beard oil to the roots and run through with your hands. This will keep it nourished and help the hair to retain its natural moisture. Use the residue of a styling paste to keep in shape, and give a glossy finish. Visit your barber every two weeks to tidy up the strays, and so they can clean up your cheek line.

Men's Long Beard Grooming Products


Full Gandalf

What Is It?

The hipster beard AKA the full Gandalf is the kind of beard you can twizzle and plait, should you so desire.

What’s The Commitment?

To grow a beard of this length takes around six-to-eight months, but be prepared for plenty of awkward in between phases and time spent in front of the mirror keeping it neat(ish).

Will It Work For Me?

If you can grow sizeable facial furniture it’s something you should try at least once, but there are a few things to keep in mind. It works for those with swag (and without a job working around heavy machinery.) It’s a bold statement of facial hair, so make sure you have the confidence to match.

Men's Bushy, Long and Unruly Beards

How Do I Groom It?

Visit your barber every two or three weeks for tidy-ups and trims, and look after your beard in the same way as a long beard – shampoo, condition and use a beard oil every day. A wooden pipe will complete the look.

Men's Unruly Beard Grooming Products

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