all about beards is proud to present Dave's excellent beard success story. Dave grows an excellent beard. Here he shares the story of his beard in words and pictures. Dave's great story is categorized as both a success story and a featured beard on the site. His enthusiasm and dedication are hard to beat. Please add to Dave's success by reading his excellent beard success story, getting inspired, and growing your own beard! Oh, and be sure to encourage others to do the same.
All photos are courtesy of Dave and are used with permission. The photos are subject to the site's conditions of use.
Be sure to visit Dave's photo album.
- UPDATE: See the second set of photos added to Dave's photo album.
- UPDATE: Dave took his new beard to a barber to have it shaped. See the results in fourteen new photos that start here. Following the session with the barber, Dave touched up the newly-shaped beard himself. Stay tuned for those results in the next photo update!
- UPDATE: See how Dave shaped up his beard himself after the barber finished with it. Six new photos are here.
- UPDATE: Fun with beard and mirror. Ten new photos are here.
- UPDATE: Dave's greatest growth yet! Fourteen new photos are here.
- UPDATE: Dave's transformation! You've got to see it to believe it! Sixteen new photos are here. What's next???
- UPDATE: Dave's next facial hair variation! Six new photos are here. What's next???
- UPDATE: Dave's facial hair style adventures have landed him in the site's beard style sets project! Lots of new photos are in Dave's style set album
- UPDATE: Dave's full beard came back, but had to go again in a creative shave-down. Sixteen new photos are here.
what is it about beards?
What do you think of beards?
I think a beard is a peculiar quality by which a man is distinguished from a child. I feel a beard is very masculine, and is a badge of self-confidence. They look very natural, giving a man wearing the full beard the impression of being genuine, unforced, and true to being oneself.
Why do you grow your beard now?
I have had full beards before, but they were always short-lived, or shaved off into other fun styles. I didn't have the encouragement, and support that I have now to grow a full beard. I honestly thought it was just another fun idea, but now that I have made the choice to have a full beard, I hope to inspire others and try to change some negative views on beards.
before the beard
Did you ever want to grow a beard before you were old enough to grow one? If so, do you remember at how old you were when you first knew that you someday wanted to grow a beard?
I always wanted a beard, as far back as I can remember. My dad would leave for the hunt with other family members and not come home for a long time, leaving with only a couple weeks of stubble. But when he came home he was fully bearded, still dressed in his hunting clothes, bringing home a bounty of meat for the deep freeze. So primitive, but that is exactly what attracted me to it. Everyone left for the hunt with a little stubble, and come back as bearded men.
growing the beard
Dave with an early goatee and mustache in 1999.
What motivated you to grow your beard for the first time?
The fact that I could grow facial hair and no one else could. When I was fifteen, I tried for the full beard but wasn't able to attain solid growth on my cheeks, so I went with what I could grow: a goatee. No one gave me any encouragement the first time, especially my mother. She told me years later that she didn't want me to have any facial hair because that meant "her baby wasn't a baby anymore."
How did you feel about the way that your first beard turned out?
Well, at the time I thought it looked very patchy, so I shaved it off to a goatee fast, avoiding the first stage of growing. I didn't have any resource on how to grow a full beard and became very discouraged early in the growing steps. I wasn't happy at the time, but if I had the knowledge and patience I have now, I think I would have been pleased with my first growth.
How did you find the web site "all about beards"?
While talking to my girlfriend Miranda about the idea of growing some kind of facial hair or a beard, I decided to look for some photos of other beards to give her an idea of what I was looking to do. We searched on Google and found all about beards. We looked at the photos, read through the featured beard and success stories. Here was all of the information, photos, resources, and personal stories that we both needed. We quickly bookmarked the page and used it over the next week to make my final decision. I was afraid she wasn't going to go for this idea of having a full beard, but she is very supportive of my beard growth and encourages me. She is a great girl.
How did the "all about beards" site influence your decision to grow a beard?
When we first found the site I was looking for different styles to play around with -- nothing that would last long, just a quick fix until I found what I wanted to do with my facial hair. First idea was a chin curtain, then I thought about bringing back the handle bar mustache, but after looking around and reading the stories, I couldn't get the idea of growing a nice full beard out of my head. I went through a lot of the featured beards with Miranda, making us both excited for the growth process.
Miranda and Dave
Was the site's information on growing a beard helpful to you?
Yes it was. Any other time I grew a beard, I shaped it too early and was never happy with the lines that I shaved in. This time around I shaped it on the day of week four, taking my time, cutting off little by little until I found a line that I was happy with.
Once you started growing your beard, did you ever have thoughts of giving up the effort? Did the site help you to keep growing?
Throughout week two, I felt like cutting my own head off with a spoon because it was getting so itchy. I just kept giving my beard a good scrub in a hot shower, and visiting the site for some encouragement. I knew the itching would subside. It had just been so long since I have had any facial hair, my skin was reacting unfavorably . I wanted a beard so badly though, it could have been ten times worse and I still would have stuck it out. Other than week two, I never thought about shaving once.
You've grown a full beard. How did you select this style?
By reading the success stories and feature beard pages on all about beards. Before I visited the site, I was looking for a quick style I could just shave in, but once I was here, I quickly changed my thoughts and decided on the full beard.
Dave before going with the full beard
Was the site's information on beard grooming useful?
Very much so. When I grew beards in the past, I never used shampoo on them. I would use whatever body soap that I had. This time around, I use shampoo and conditioner and I notice a huge improvement on how soft my beard stays. I also never owned a beard trimmer before, so I ran out and bought one before even starting my beard. I used a hair trimmer before, but the maneuverability of a beard trimmer and the different attachments it comes with makes styling much more easy, with less chance of making a mistake.
Did you enjoy the beard-growing process?
Other than the very itchy week two, I really enjoyed the growth process. I love taking pictures every two or so weeks to see the difference between stages for myself. Seeing how the beard looks at your recent stage, comparing your beard to prior stages, makes you excited to see the next stage.
How do you like being a full-bearded man?
I love it. It has changed my appearance in a very positive way. Everyone is so supportive of my growth, and a lot of people are very excited to see how big my beard is going to get. I feel a lot more comfortable with a full beard than I did with a shaved face. I also noticed that the skin on my face is as healthy as it has ever been since I have had my beard. I don't have one thing to say negative about being a fully-bearded man.
How have people reacted to your beard? How do you feel about their reactions?
I have received mostly positive reactions. Everyone thought I was crazy for starting my beard during the hot month of July. But now even those people who just shook their heads like my beard and are looking forward to its growth.
Have you thought about whether you intend to stay bearded permanently or just occasionally?
I have been thinking about that a lot. I really want to stay bearded, but I did make a promise to my best friend's fiancÚ that I would shave it off before her wedding. I am in their wedding party and would shave if she wanted me to. But I think she is going to tell me to keep it. She is also supportive of me growing a beard now. I think she was just worried that I was going to have an unkempt beard. If I do shave it off, I will be growing a full beard back right after the wedding.
What's the best thing about having a beard?
I feel the best thing about a beard is the increased feeling of self-confidence. Like I said before, a beard is a badge of self-confidence, making you feel more natural and comfortable with yourself.
What do you like best about your beard?
I like that it is about six different colors, giving my beard a different shade. I have red, brown, black, white, grey, and blond whiskers, most prominent being brown and black. During the summer, the sun lightens up my beard giving it a golden look. In the winter, it turns dark brown.
Would you recommend to other guys that they grow full beards?
Yes I do. I try to get everyone that I know that can grow a beard to grow one. I believe that media has affected the way the younger generation (and our generation) on how we think of beards. The media, in my opinion, have a form of cultural dictatorship, choosing how they want people to look by what products they are trying to sell. There are many publications on media's effect on women, but not many on the effect of men. I feel that the media has affected the way beards are looked at in a negative way. There are no fashion advertisements with men with beards, the television crews that give us our news are cleanly shaved. Even the picture of Adam and Eve in a school book shows a cleanly-shaved Adam. But it was only twenty to thirty years ago that body hair and a full masculine beard were not only the popular way to look, it was considered very sexy. So if you can grow a beard, grow one. Not only will it make you feel good about yourself, it is still considered to be sexy, no matter what the photo on the advertisement says.
What do you think about being featured on beards.org?
It's great! It is some of the strongest support a guy can get! I hope this feature helps someone else grow a beard, just like the other featured beards helped me make the decision to grow mine.