Figuring out where your beard neckline should be can be somewhat difficult. If you take your neck beard neck line too high, your beard may look a bit silly and like it sits on your face. Grow your beard neckline too low, and even the most manicure beard can look unkempt and overgrown. Remember, an unkempt, poorly-maintained beard neckline can ruin an otherwise awesome beard. So here are a few tips on how to set your beard neckline at the perfect spot and how to maintain it.
What is a Beard Neckline?
It’s important to first define what a beard neckline is. Most simply, your beard neckline is where your beard ends, and for most beard types that is somewhere on your neck. Now, some beard types, like a goatee or chinstrap never go down to your neck, but other common beard types, like the full beard, grow down to the neck area.
Where Should Your Beard’s Neckline Be
There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to shaping your beard neckline. Ideally, your hairstyle should define your “throatstyle.” If you hairstyle is messy, unkempt and long you’re going to want a messy, unkempt beard neckline. That means you’ll want a somewhat natural-looking border between the shaved part of our neck and the hairy undergrowth. Conversely, if you have a clean-cut hairstyle, you’ll want what a barber may call a “line-up” or “shape-up”, which means squaring off the hair on your neck into a crisp line with clearly defined angles.
Beard Neckline Pro Tip
If you can pull it off, in rare cases a juxtaposition between messy and clean-cut is pretty badass. Try a clean-cut haircut with a messy beard or vice versa. Beware, though, growing out this unique style this style requires dedication and confidence to get through the awkward stages until you find the perfect yin and yang between the two!
Medium-sized Beard Necklines
If you have a moderate-length beard with cleaner, short hair on the back and short side and top, try adding definition to your neck’s natural hairline. First shape your beard neckline with a set of mini-trimmers. Then finish off with a razor to give your beard a strong, defined perimeter. The beard on your lower face and neck should balance the hair on your heard. A symmetrical face, which includes your beard, is more pleasing, so having any hair that’s imbalanced won’t look very good. Symmetry is super important.
Longer Beard Necklines
If you have a longer beard, you can take your neckline higher. Your neck is most likely not the focus of your face, but it does prevent your beard from simply being an extension of your chest hair.
You can see where your beard neckline should be by looking at your face. Imagine a line that goes down from the point of the ear, follows underneath your jaw, then goes back up to meet the other ear.” Once you’ve located that line, the question is how high or low should you take you beard neckline.
If you’re unsure of the beard style that is right for you, check out our guide to Awesome Beard Types and Styles.
When to Trim Your Beard Neckline
It’s generally agreed the best time to trim or shave your beard is after a shower. The warm water will open the pores found on your face and neck and soften your skin. This makes shaving so much easier.
If you’re in a rush press a warm towel on your face for a couple of minutes, which can create the same pore-opening and skin-softening effect. However, if using a beard trimmer, make sure your beard trimmer is rated for wet and dry use.
Use shaving cream for beard neckline trimming.. You don’t need a lot. About a dime-sized amount will do, but just remember to mix in a bit of water to give it a creamier texture.
How to Trim Your Beard Neckline
Just because you can’t see your own beard neckline is no reason to ignore it. You might be able to get away with not maintaining your neckline when you’re simply sporting stubble. But once it goes beyond the stubble stage and starts turning into a proper beard, it’s time to start grooming! A well-defined and well-maintained beard neckline almost always looks better and tidier. Here’s how to trim a beard neckline like you mean business.
4 Steps to Create and Define Your Beard Neckline
Time needed: 20 minutes.
How to create the Perfect Beard Neckline
- Know where to stop
Look straight in the mirror, holding your head straight. Any hair you can see below the bottom horizon of your beard has to go. This is your beard neckline.
- Define the beard line
Place your finger at the bottom of your beard and move that finger to your neck. This spot marks a natural demarcation line between your beard and the part of your neck you should shave.
- Center your beard neckline
Place your beard trimmer at this spot and shave downward. Continue on one side, working toward the outward part of your neck from the middle, slowly moving toward your ear. Again, stay at your beard’s bottom horizon and stay under the jawline. Return to the middle point again, and work outward on the other side, moving toward your other ear. Don’t make your beard neckline too round. A slight curve upward is best.
- Stay square or go round
Now you have to make a decision. Do you rock a squared look? Or go with a rounded look? It depends on your personal style. But first, trim a vertical line (that’s up and down) below the front ofyour earlobes down your neck. Connect with the horizontal line (left and right) below your beard. Leave this as a chiseled, angular corner if you’re going for the squared look. Or gently round it if that matches your intended style.
- Finish it off
Look good? If you’re happy with the results, shave the remaining neck below your beard neckline for a clean neck shave. Make your collar proud to be seen with your beard.
Alternate Way to Define Your Beard Neckline: Double Chin Method
Don’t worry, no double chin required. Simply create a temporary double chin by tilting your neck and chin downward toward your neck. You’ll create a natural fold where that temporary double chin will meets your neck. As a bonus, that bead neckline runs the entire length of your jaw.
When you’re ready to shave, simply shave off everything below the neckline you’ve created with the double chin method. And, by all means, lift your chin to rid yourself of that second chin as soon as you’re done.
Beard Neckline Tips & Hacks
There are several things that make finding, creating and maintaining a good beard neckline easy. Here are just few:
Don’t trim too high
You don’t want your beard neckline encroaching on your face or chin. It makes your face appear too big for your beard and awkward.
Keep your chin up
When shaving or trimming raise your face and use the fingers on your non-shaving hand to assist. Stretch your skin tight under your chin as you trim. If not, your skin will bunch up. Instead, keep your chin raised and pull the skin tight to avoid missing a spot or cutting yourself.
Set your beard trimmer length
Like most men, you want to keep the length of your beard neckline shorter than the length of your beard in general. So set your beard trimmer’s length settings to at least two levels shorter than your beard.
Shave with the grain (at least at first)
If you have sensitive skin and want to prevent irritated skin, shave with the grain. Shaving against the grain may lead to irritation and ingrown hairs. The smoothest path lies with the grain, not against it.
Get a beard neckline fade
A beard fade creates a subtle, natural finish to your beard, rather than a harsher, crisp beard neckline. Try to create a gradual transition between hair and beard. In other words, your hair should slowly increase in length from the bottom of your neckline until it becomes fullest on your cheek. If you are sporting short hair up top or a fade, transition from longer hair up top to shorter hair around the temples, to shorter beard hair at the top of your jaw down to a longer beard.
How to get a beard fade:
- Set your beard trimmer’s length two settings lower than your beard.
- Trim down your beard using the shorter setting for the bottom half of your beard neckline. That is the area above your Adam’s Apple. (Or whatever area you’ve defined as your neckline.)
- Trim up to meet and blend in the shorter areas. Use a longer setting on the lower part of your beard (just above your beard neckline). And use the shorter setting at the top. This creates the beard fade if done correctly.
Maintaining a beard fade
Maintaining a beard fade requires a bit of extra work. When done properly, though, it creates a distinctive, tapered finish that enhances your beard’s overall appearance. Men with long beards generally have less work when creating a beard fade. Because the neckline is less noticeable, a neckline that’s too short may not stand out like a sore thumb. Don’t go overboard when trimming a long beard neckline and trim too short, though.
Razor still needed
For an added touch, shave the stubble and stray hair below your neckline. Doing so creates a clean finish.
Use a beard shaping tool
A beard shaping tool helps ensure shave lines are symmetrical and even. They also help define your neckline. Choose a beard shaper that works best with the contours of your neck. Find a curved side, and hold it in place along your beard neckline. Shave below and right up to the tool.
The Best Tools for an Awesome Beard Neckline
Never use a screwdriver when a hammer will do. That being said, the right set of tools will make defining and maintaining your beard neckline a breeze. Here are a few tools every bearded man should have in his arsenal.
This is your go-to tool for trimming and shaping your beard neckline. A quality beard trimmer helps take beard grooming to the highest level. Among the things you should keep in mind when selecting a beard trimmer is its versatility, whether it’s corded or cordless (or both), the attachments that come with it, your beard’s length, whether you can use it when your face and beard are wet (or dry), and blade quality. Blades made of stainless steel, chromium, and titanium usually last longer. They also provide a cleaner, more comfortable shave. Here are a few recommendations:
|Philips Norelco All-In-One Beard Trimmer
Includes thirteen attachments for all of your grooming needs: Full-size steel trimmer, a steel precision trimmer, a nose and ear hair trimmer, three hair trimming guards, three beard trimming guards, a stubble guard, an accessory travel storage bag, and a cleaning brush. Self-sharpening blades. Less than $20 on Amazon!
|Wahl Groomsman Battery-Powered Beard, Mustache, Hair & Nose Hair Trimmer
These stainless-steel blades stay sharp. 14 different trimming lengths from 1/16” to 1/2”; battery powered for cordless convenience, comes with bonus nose & ear trimmer with rinsible head that allows you to clean up unwanted hair. Less than $15 on Amazon.
|Remington All-in-One Rechargeable Grooming Kit
Kit includes a full-size trimmer; foil shaver; nose, ear and detail trimmer; hair clipper comb with 8 length settings; three beard and stubble combs; and a storage/travel pouch. Can run for up to 65 minutes on a single charge. The attachments are washable, which makes cleaning easier. About $20 on Amazon.
While a beard trimmer can be the easiest, most convenient tool for trimming and shaping your beard neckline, some men prefer using a razor for their trimming needs. Even with a beard trimmer, a razor is useful when cleaning up your neck and cheekbones. As with a beard trimmer, you have plenty of options.
Many men prefer double-edged safety razors. First of all, these old-school tools look and feel cool. There’s just something about using one of these. Overall, they’re easy to use. Shaving newbies are sometimes intimidated by safety razors, but they’re pretty safe to use. The blade is locked at an angle to help prevent nicks and cuts. However, the blade’s “locked in” angle can make it harder to shave around angular parts of your face.
Vikings Blade “The Chieftain” Double Edge Safety Razor
Weishi Long Handle Butterfly Double Edge Safety Razor
Shaving Revolution Long Handle Double Edge Safety Razor
Using cartridge razors means using razor (aka razor handle), along with separately purchased cartridges. The best cartridge razors help keep nicks and cuts to a minimum. They are easy to use and control as you maneuver around your face and neck. However, while the handle portion of a cartridge razor system can be purchased at a relatively low cost, the blade cartridges can cost a small fortune over time, depending on how often you change out the cartridge.
Gillette Fusion5 Men’s Razor Handle + 4 Blade Refills
Harry’s Razor Set with 3 Razor Blade Refills
Schick Hydro 5 Sense Razor Handle and 16 Refills
These are for certified bad asses only. These vintage tools have plenty of current relevance. And it’s hard to beat a straight razor’s close shave when done right. But beware; learning how to use a straight razor correctly takes finesse and experience. Make sure you have an ample supply of tissues for your first few attempts!
Zertone Straight Razor with Vintage Natural Wood Handle
Electric razors are great for shaving whiskers down to the skin or to lessen their overall length, with some practice and experience. An electric razor can keep the skin not covered by your beard completely whisker-free. As mentioned, you can also trim your beard with an electric razor by holding your electric razors at the correct distance from your skin. It take a steady hand and nerves of steel, those, so go down this path gingerly.
Philips Norelco OneBlade Hybrid Electric Trimmer and Shaver
It may seem like cheating, but a beard shaper is a handy beard neckline tool. A beard shaper is basically a template or guide, usually made of clear plastic. It helps achieve a variety of neckline styles, from a gentle curved cut to the curved step cut. A beard shaper also helps define your cheek line, as well as the line between the sideburns and your ears.
Black Beard Shaping & Styling Tool
Beard Comb or Beard Brush
These are great tools to have on hand when shaping up you beard neckline and grooming your beard in general. A beard comb or beard brush will fine-tune your beard’s appearance to help you better define how you want to approach trimming your neckline. For a definitive comparison between the two, read “Beard Brush vs Comb Comparison. Which is Better?”
Wahl Beard Brush with 100% Boar Bristles
2.8″ Pocket Beard Comb by Kent
Whether it’s hand-held or secured to your wall, a mirror is strongly encouraged. There’s no law stating you have to trim your beard neckline while watching what you’re doing, but it does make it that much easier.
deweisn Tri-Fold Lighted Vanity Mirror
How to Maintain Your Beard Neckline
Shaping a higher beard neckline, or blending neck hair up into a tapered stubble beneath the jaw, can create a tailored look. The downside, however, is the required maintenance.
Keep it Natural
If you follow your natural hairline, then maintaining your beard neckline should require less maintenance. Also consider that shaving certain parts of your face over and over just to get a certain look each day can result in some pretty irritated skin. Plus, isn’t that one of the reasons you grew your beard? The throat is usually a very sensitive are for men, so plan ahead when charting your intended beard neckline.
Open and Close Your Pores
It’s easier to trim and shave when the pores of your skin are open. The best times for that are after you shower or after you’ve applied some warm water or steam to your face and neck. You should close your pores after trimming, though. Apply cold water or an alcohol-free aftershave to your skin to do so. This helps keep your skin clean and healthy.
What to Do if You Mess up Your Beard Neckline
Face it, you’re going to mess up eventually. Trial and error are part of the equation, and not fatal (unless perhaps using a straight razor – sort of kidding!). Just know what to do when it happens. Here are some tips.
Use Beard Grooming Products
Trimming and fading are important for maintaining a well-groomed beard and neckline. Regularly cleaning your beard with a quality beard wash or beard shampoo is essential, too.
Use Beard Oil and Beard Balm
Both help nourish and hydrate your beard and the skin beneath it. As a bonus, they smell great and make your whiskers easier to manage. A well-maintained beard is easier to trim.
You’ll be tempted to “even things out.” Don’t. An easy escape route after making a mistake is to stop shaving for a week or two. Your beard will grow beyond the neckline you wish to modify, which allows you to start over. Or, stop shaving for a couple of days and define your new neckline with the newer growth.
Trim Back Existing Growth
You can also trim back some of the existing growth to allow new growth to blend in with it. If the newly defined neckline suits you, then your job is finished until the next time you (flawlessly) trim.
Beard Neckline Conclusion
A well-defined beard neckline is often the difference between a great-looking beard and a haggard one. Following a few simple guidelines and using the right tools will help achieve an overall look that enhances your beard’s appeal. We hope this article has helped, and we welcome your feedback. Tell us how you maintain your beard neckline and the tools you use. We hope to hear from you!
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