the hardest thing about growing a beard

The most difficult thing about growing a beard is dealing with the comments of others. Okay, that may not be THE hardest thing, but it is definitely among the most difficult. Depending on your situation, you may find that the comments on your new beard are all supportive. That would be the best-case scenario. And that scenario does happen. In the worst-case scenario, however, people may declare all-out psychological warfare in an attempt to defeat your beard-growing efforts.

People are resistant to change and they all have opinions. When you grow a beard, you are changing the image that they have of you and they often would prefer that you not do that. They usually also have an opinion on beards that they feel compelled to share with you, like it or not. It’s often surprising how free people feel to criticize a new beard when similar criticisms of other physical features would generally be considered off limits. What should you do? Be prepared to stand your ground. When growing a new beard, make a commitment to yourself to see it through for at least six weeks. Make it a steadfast rule that you will not cave in, no matter what kinds of remarks or complaints are lobbed at you. You must psychologically prepare yourself for an onslaught of comments. Stand firm. Grow your beard!

Far too many newly-grown beards get hacked off in fits of self-doubt after receiving some insensitive, negative comments. Don’t let this happen to you. After people learn that you are not spineless and that you are committed to growing the beard, the commentary will usually ease up. It may even all become positive feedback. Some of the harshest critics may find that they actually like your beard! You’ll never learn that, however, if you let the beard critics win.

87 thoughts on “the hardest thing about growing a beard”

  1. I just started growing my first beard 2 months ago just because a friend said I shouldn’t. Now, I’m not sure if I’d ever cut it off…

  2. Hey — I love this blog! It certainly does take encouragement and/or intestinal fortitude to get your beard off the ground (so to speak). I faced a lot of opposition from some elements in my family at the beginning of my beard odyssey, but I managed to persevere, and I couldn’t be happier, 7 weeks in now!

  3. I started my beard on Thanksgiving. I have gotten lots of good comments about it. I plan on keeping it for a long time. I encourage other to grow their beards.

  4. The only person I ever get any negative comments from is my mother. She says it makes me look too old (and her by association). Everyone else either likes it or are indifferent.

  5. You might call this “beard-thickness & neckline Catch-22.” My biggest quandary has been the area under the jaw between chin and neck, and how to fill (or not fill) it with growth.

    The reason many guys set the neckline “too high” (which can look awkward from the side and back) is that they want to define their jawline, but _don’t_ want a thick beard beneath their chin, or a “bushy” look in general. Many women seem to like beards better when they’re not that much beyond stubble, which is a pragmatic consideration! Missing out on a hottie because you look too Neanderthal (to them) may not be worth martyrdom.

    Unless the beard is allowed to grow approx. 1/2″ to 1″ thick below the jaw (depending on chin-to-neck slope), it looks odd to trim the neckline at the “natural” point because it creates a brown mask effect. It can make the neck look bloated from the front and amplify a sloping neck or double chin. Men with a genetic horizontal slope beneath the jaw have it easy, especially if their jaw isn’t too long. Overly long jaws look ungainly with a long stretch of hair underneath them (with a short beard, that is).

    With many men, the underside of the jaw loses its former horizontal state once you reach a certain age, and facial exercises have limited effects. This can be roughly defined as a 30+ degree down-slope from chin to neck, if not an obvious double chin. Since many guys grow beards to _hide_ those things, they face a dilemma about defining the neckline too low vs. growing the beard thicker than they want.

    Often they end up settling for goatees since those aren’t expected to extend all the way back to the neck. Personally, I think goatees look contrived and require more work than just shaving (especially the vertical edges). I tried one once and couldn’t get comfortable with the concept. It’s like you’re trying to look hip or suave, etc..

    To reiterate, if the beard is kept short you can still see the chin-to-neck slope underneath it (which was supposed to be hidden!) It can end up looking worse than just shaving altogether. Letting the beard get bushy tends to fill in that void, as if you had a horizontal slope to begin with. That’s the Catch-22; bushy beard to hide double-chin or short beard with imperfect neckline.

    If there was a device to easily taper a neckline for a “fade-in” effect vs. an abrupt edge, it would help a lot of people. I had a beard for 5 years but was never quite OK with a sharp cutoff. If anyone knows an easily-repeatable way to fade the neckline for guys with “sloping jaws” please followup.

  6. Jim, I don’t quite understand what you mean by “sloping jaws.” I think I would have to have a picture of an example of this to quite understand what you are saying here.

  7. I just wanted to say that I’ve been growing my beard for over a month now and I think that I’m looking devilishly handsome. Whenever it gets a bit longer I will try to post some pics for everyone to see. I do have a question or two and a comment. My first question is, ” How do most men who are uh…. beardless generally react to those men who have full beards?” My second question is, “Why do people react so rudely and openly advise you to shave whenever it’s not their damn face?” My comment is that “Dan” in the Success Stories section is unbelievably sexy. He looks like an Assyrian god! I want Dan’s number! northatlantic@lycos.com

  8. Jim: I can’t say enough just how dead on your observation is. I’m in the sloping jaw/neck category (probably too much beer) and have struggled over the last few beard tries on just where the neck line should be. I’ve always opted for the “crease” which is plainly too high. I think this round I’ll go for full and bushy and see what happens.

    Steve: Thanks for the site!

    Regards – jp

  9. Yeah, I grew a beard recently for the first time, had a few comments but stuck with it and now all seems good! Just a quick question, if anyone knows; my beard hair is a bit tough and wiry and doesn’t seem to grow ‘neatly’. Some bits seems to grow straight out and others stright down. Does anyone know of any product that I could use or any grooming technique I could use to make it a bit softer and more manageable, just so I can keep growning it longer and it won’t look a mess…. jeez, I sound like a girl don’t I!!!

  10. Well, after a year and 3 months of growth, my beard/forest is gone. I shaved it off purposely because aside from the occasional trim (van Dyke), I have not seen my baby face in close to two years, nor my chin, or lack of it, in over four.

    Of course, an alternative reason is because early on, I told Steve I would shave off the beard at some point and commit to a weekly update for the next three months. I do, however, miss my beard. While I live in Texas, the biting winds of our winter weather has my cheeks missing it too. Maybe I should have started this in the summer, but before you know it, my beard will be back.

  11. Guys, any recomendations on beard trimmers Make and Model number, my trimmer gives me an uneven trim, are the foil trimmers any good or should I stick to the tooth king. Any advice guys.
    E-mail to dohertycp@eircom.net. please

  12. To whom it might concern…how do YOUs recommend that i persist-oN with my DREAM to prosper in the area of my facial hair ??

    Meaning, I have a goatee, but, it goes thru so many stages, meaning,
    some hairs are courser than others, some are LONGer, some are more and less straight, some stronger–apparently the roots for them particular ones, some are seemingly shorter ’cause the wind distracts them often times ….

    MY KEY GOAL is to re-grow out the goatee to be like I had it about 5 years ago, when I was 23 yRs. oLd.

    Back in theM-dayz’, my goatee was a HEAVEN-SENTed, meaning,
    each hair was inexplicably + undeniably STRAIGHT, and also each one
    was STRONG, + each hair was evidently real STRONG [yeA’, winds had to be REAL strong to move ‘eM].

    ANywaYz’, if anyone knows on Earth ’bout this, it’s YOUs.
    sO , ANY iNFo. bACK REGARDING THIS iNQUiRy WILL BE ‘PPRECIATED . .

  13. Jimmy;

    I also have a very wiry beard. Use a good conditioner on it every time you wash it (daily I would hope). Conditioning really does make a difference.

  14. I enjoyed this blog…I work as a mortician and am constantly having to stand my ground with my boss. I try to give examples of upstanding bearded folks,

    Jesus
    Abe Lincoln
    (even God has a beard in the old paintings)

  15. Good for you , Nick , Stick to your guns ! . Grow that beard ! – I know things would be easier for me if where I work if I became a “Cleanhead ” again . But I hate my chin – So I wont ! + Im lazy too. I keep it short now , just trimming it and shaving my underneck is a job sometime , but its worth it . God Bless/ Take Care – Ohio John

  16. I have been growing my beard for about a month now, and am trying to look for pictures of ways to trim it. I don’t like having so much hair on my lower neck, and back by my ears, but wanted to wait till it got failrly thick before touching it at all. While trying to find good examples online I stumbled across this blog, which is awsome by the way. Anyway, any tips for a younger guy (20) on growing his first beard, and where to draw that line between beard and neck? I think going straight along my jawline would be to high, but I don’t want to try something else and have it look hoaky.

  17. I would like to begin by encouraging all men with the ability to grow a decent beard to do so. Understand that you are chosen by God to have this special attribute, and not all of us are blessed in this way. I would love to grow an awesome man-beard, but lack the genes. All that I have been able to muster so far is a modest patch just below my chin. There are several men that I know who have potential to grow, but don’t. This is a shame. Good luck men. Grow for us less fortunate ones.

  18. I don’t have a problem with my neck line. I let my beard grow long and no one can see my neck anyway.

    After I get out of the shower and my beard is still wet I comb it out and down.

    The only time I have a problem with my neck is when I “snag” a few whiskers in the comb, but that hardly happens because I start at the ends and gradually work my way deeper with the comb. A long beard buddy of mine uses a brush.

    Aldon

  19. I am about 3 weeks into converting my goatee into a full beard.

    I am certainly enjoying not having to shave (yet) and it is filling in nicely.

    It has more gray in it than I would have hoped but most of that seems to be on my chin, and everyone is used to that from the goatee ! Will post some pics eventually.

  20. Hi, I am 27 years old and have only been growing my beard for about two weeks now. I was in the military for a while and never really grew it out before longer than a week or two. I am noticing that it looks really thick in the goatee/mustache area and along the jaw line, but my sideburns and cheeks are patchy. The hairs that are there are thick and black, but they are more sparse than the rest of my face. What i am wondering is will this fill in as I continue to grow it? right now it looks just scraggly and dirty to me and i want to cut it off pretty bad, but I want a full beard so I have been trying to be patient. any advice would be greatly appreciated, thank you

  21. Hans,
    Sometimes it may look like it won’t fill in and it does. Sometimes, it may not fill in to your satisfaction. If you can stick with it, give it about four more weeks and then evaluate how it looks. Good luck to you.

  22. Hi , i am 23 years old, have very less beard and facial hairs. I am worried much about this. so can you pleasetell me what are the steps i need to follow to improve my facial hairs. Really i am worrying much abt this, plz clarify this problem.
    thank you.

  23. Hi, I have just started to grow a beard but my mustache and the “soulpatch” area are much lighter than the rest of my beard. It kind of lookes like I have what you refer to as a chin curtain – when I am trying to grow a full beard. Does anyone know if the mustache etc. will appear thicker or more “visible” when it grows longer, or will I have to coulor my mustache? In that case do you know any products that work? Will I have to coulor my mustache a number of times per week. I’m trying to figure out if it is worthwile to continue saving. Or does anyone have any other tips on how to make the mustache more apparent compared to the rest of the beard? Thanks in advance!

  24. On December 27, Jim said:

    Many women seem to like beards better when they’re not that much beyond stubble, which is a pragmatic consideration! Missing out on a hottie because you look too Neanderthal (to them) may not be worth martyrdom.

    In my opinion, if a woman is that shallow, you should reconsider if she actually is all that much of a hottie.

  25. Hello!
    I have a few questions:

    1) Is there anything that can stop the itching in the first days of beard growing? (I know it won’t itchy later, because I’ve already grown my beard one time)

    2) How can I get a thick beard like these guys have? I’m 20 and have a complete beard, but the mustache doesn’t connect with the beard. My father and all man in my family have full and complete beards (so it’s not a genetics issue). Is there any product I can use or any daily procedure to make my beard grow thicker and fill the places?

    If I had a beard full like that I would never shave! đŸ˜€
    OMG! I really need a beard like that!
    Thanks!

  26. my beard are grown same all the places on the face and my mush is not strong also what do iam worries

  27. Great site and some good looking Beards here!!!

    Have a goatee myself and would love to grow a beard at some stage.
    Good on ya!!

  28. I used to get carded every time I wanted to get into a bar.

    Since I grew a full beard no one asks me for ID anymore.

    Another reason to grow one guys!

  29. My beard was started for a bet some 30 years ago during university days, and have enjoyed one of various lengths ever since, usually on average about 1.5 to 2″ long! The aim was to see how quickly a ‘full set’ could be grown to a given length over a period of three weeks. It grew evenly from day one, if a little sparse for my liking and is still trimmed as it always has using comb and scissors.

    Of course there were the usual comments and remarks, but you just learn to ignore these. Over the years it became apparent that most of this was often borne from envy because they did not want or could not grow one themselves. Thats fine. It is an individual lifestyle choice. Most comments have been complementary and, yes even success with the ladies. They prefer one that is established and not stubble as its softer on their skin when getting intimate.

    A beard appears to act as a filter too (no, not to filter out tealeaves when drinking tea!) with regard to ‘filtering’ out people or women who are superficial in intent. If they can not see your true self beyond the facade then, in my opinion, beware.

    In the UK and maybe this happens elsewhere, amature psychologists have on many occasions tried to suggest that a beard means the person has something to hide! I am not sure about that one and perhaps someone could comment on this?

    Having a beard does not appear to bar you from getting good or professional jobs either. Most good employers are usually only interested in your abilities. Work colleagues have never seen me without one and are trying their hardest to see if they can persuade me to shave it off!

    The only problem I have encountered is with a deaf lady who could lip read but only with people without beards as it masked the facial expressions necessary for accurate reading.

    Finally, no two beards are the same and they are as individual as the person in these days of required conformity.

  30. I have been growing my beard for about two months, and I like it. My wife and my mother advice to immediately shave it of.
    What shall I do? (keep it or convert to a goatee (moustache)?

  31. Alex,
    It depends on how much you want to keep your full beard. If you really want to keep it, you should. Then just focus on teaching your wife and mother to accept it as part of you. Good luck!

  32. How can i change my stubble beard to grow in thicker so i can feel more like a man??? and does beer help beard growth..

  33. Dealing with ugly comments about one’s beard:

    Here’s my paraphrase of part of the excellent article at the top of this thread:

    The ugly comments often really aren’t about the beard but about trying to relieve a momentary pang of social insecurity at the expense of the first visible target.

    Here’s my experience of that:

    I can let most of those slide quickly away from my attention, but sometimes I’ve felt stung.

    The stings came from a few acquaintances or friends I had trusted. They would have gone after other people at those moments if I hadn’t been visible and participating in the conversation. Such analysis didn’t make the stings any easier to take.

    The good news is that they did admit to the offenses, express genuine regret and treat me better after I told them I didn’t appreciate what they said. Forgiving the worst of the stings was neither quick nor cheap, but the eventual relief was and is better than the repeated injuries from reliving the events. By the way, for a great movie about the real-time consequences of reliving or repeating bad events, see the movie, “Flatliners,” from 1990, with Julia Robers.

    One sting event that didn’t stop hurting every few months for several years, even after I had forgiven that stinger and received an apology, led to a place in my own heart that needed some light.

  34. When I started growing my beard I got a lot of negative remarks, but being the bull-headed German that I am, I perservered. I still get a few “remarks” from people that don’t know me and don’t know that pestering me just sets my resolve to do my own thing.

    Now, the people that know me try to use reverse psychology on me … “Oh you look so much younger / handsom with your beard trimmed.”

    Yes, once a year I still cut my beard back but never completely off. I’m letting it grow for two years this time to get ready for the IBMC in Alaska in 2009.

  35. Steve:
    Thanks for sharing that. I’m sorry to hear that some of the stings were so hurtful. I’m glad that you stood up for yourself and that things worked out.

    Aldon:
    Keep growing!

  36. more than half the people who see me with my beard find it hard to approach me for some reason. Having a beard does make it harder to survive in the dating world. But my girlfriend loves my beard and wouldnt change a thing about me. so i guess in a way sticking out and being different is a good thing.

  37. I used to have a goatee I was striving to get to Ian Scott status, but, as you mentioned, my gf at the time didn’t really like it and friends would often give me the muff face comment. So I just decided to shave it off, to be spontaneous. And honestly, I didn’t care what my friends had said, it was my ex that I mostly did it for, heh. Women, right? Now I kind of regret it because it’d be quite a neck beard by now I figure. Right now, I’m trying to grow out a full on beard, to see how it’d look. Now, my facial hair is quite sparse, which makes me feel a bit self concious about the end result. But, can’t know till it’s there, right? The goatee area is the thickest area, but still can look a bit thin sometimes. But I still like how it looked. anyway, I also don’t have full coverage. I’ve got the chops and neck, and then the stache and patch being separate entities. I always hear the shave often to thicken a beard bit but I just can’t seem to believe that. Anyway, what do you beard people think and suggest?

  38. Just wanted to point out that, aside from things dealing with character, growing a beard is one of the most masculine things you can do. Think about it: women can’t grow beards. Why so many negative comments?
    Well, I think it might have something to do with the feminization of our society. Now it’s getting to the point where we see so few men with beards that when we see one, it even seems odd. How tragic. More power to you men with beards!

  39. I think the dissapearance of beards got started “before” people started being offended by the mention of God in public.

    But “man” … male and female … were created in the immage of God. The Bible speaks of the “beard of God” and I think shaving or preasuring someone to shave might be an attempt to erase more of the thought of God from our lives.

    Aldon

  40. My Father has had a beard all my life, so of course I have grown a beard or two or many in my day, normally a trucker hat accompanies it, and the occasional cowboy shirt.

    But I am about to take on an endeavor I have yet to have experienced. I am going to grow my beard until June 2008!

    At this moment I have a good inch and a half growing, so we
    will see what 7 months brings a man. I also convinced my brother
    to join in.

    Of course our wives may loose all interest in us, but with all great beards comes sacrifice.

  41. Graham,

    LOL! The jest about your wife was just a jest, I’m sure, especially if a few of your previous beards were grown during the marriage.

    Seven months will bring interesting results.

  42. In Response to Richards comment from June 2007, I couldn’t have articulated it better when you referred to a beard being a “filter” for women or people who are superficial in intent. Being someone who has bordered on, or shall we say been eccentric, I have on quite a few occasions grown my beard to achieve “mountain man status” for various reasons, ranging from a finish line date arbitrarily picked out of the air to the culmination of some personal goal achieved, to no definite time frame or particular reason whatsoever…Hey we all know it’s a man thing. It’s beautiful to have such a bearded brotherhood. I too have had to stand my ground and sometimes in doing so and speaking the truth have alienated individuals who for some reason thought I would just tolerate their comments…but for future reference they reserved their hasty comments or canned them all together. Nevertheless, I have found that my growing a beard was the one true way to find out someone’s true nature and heart. I still maintain that I have had the utmost love and respect for those individuals who never questioned or criticized my choice or were ever rude. Now, I didn’t mind the occasional innocent question as to what made me “decide to grow a beard?” but rude behavior never warranted any explanation. I’ve done this in a corporate office setting as well as in a more relaxed work environment. In fact the way to really tell a woman’s heart is how she treated me all along, with or without the growth. Often times I would do a complete 360 and shave off everything, sometimes shocking people who had never seen me without it and didn’t recognize me. The “complete makeover” mission. I’ve done this at work and people thought a new employee was hired and I would go around asking different women out, having to disguise my voice since it is deep and a giveaway. It would last for about 2 weeks. However, several women still wanted some facial hair and would ask me why I removed everything. Usually I never gave any explanation for growing my hair out ( Usually to make it grow back thicker and more evenly after several months). I did take exception to those who told me how to wear my beard i.e. thin moustache, sideburns etc….By the way, I cut my own hair and beard and have seen the full gamut of styles and have worn many of them unbeknownest to those who choose to offer constructive criticism. Nevertheless the women who accepted me for me always ranked at the top of my list. Women, bless ’em. You gotta love ’em because with the right women they’ll accept you for anything, good or bad but in this case it’s good.

  43. I started growing a beard on Boxing Day and its coming along nicely. My wife loves it as it doesn’t scrape her face anymore (like a day or two’s stubble in the past). I’ve had a couple of friends give me raised eyebrows but most comments have been relatively neutral.

    One guy made sure he asked my wife what she thought of it before commenting (which was very wise as he avoided putting his foot in it) but that made the resulting “oh its wonderful! great!” sound a bit superficial).

    Interestingly it all started over Christmas, when I hadn’t shaved for a few days and my mum suggested I just let it grow – so I thought “why not?”. The funny thing is she’s always telling my brother to shave as he’s somewhat hairier than me but tends to look like a bum when he doesn’t shave.

    Anyway, I’ve noticed the hairs on my cheeks are relatively sparse and have yet to fill out (I’m hoping they will soon!). My tache doesn’t connect to the rest of the beard and has a sparse gap in the middle (the groove between nose and top lip).

    But overall I actually quite like the effect and we’ll see how far it’ll go. I don’t want to go for the mountain man look – its got to be presentable in an office and for visiting clients. Any suggestions for a good length (to achieve “filling out” of sparse areas but not getting huge)?

  44. Rob, for “office standards” I’d suggest keeping your beard no longer than the thickness of your fingers. That length would be good for the later fill-in by the sides (which will happen in time).

    I don’t know what prejudices the strangers around you have, but many men here in the Los Angeles area give me frankly disapproving or challenging glances on the street when my beard gets beyond finger thickness. I just keep whatever expression I have on my face at that moment, which makes them look away first.

    You might want to alternate between using a cheap beard trimmer with a “guide comb” set to your fingers’ thickness and using just your fingers and scissors, to see which way works better professionally. If finger thickness is too long, then you’ll need to stick with the beard trimmer.

    About your mustache: A gap in the septum groove and a lack of connection to the beard might work to your advantage because it lets people see most of the movements of your lips and cheeks during conversations, for those all-important nonverbal cues.

    The following may or may not be useful for you: My ‘stache is the “pencil” type when I leave my upper lip completely visible. That is a visual imbalance against my beard that I cannot stand! My ‘stache in pencil mode also slants in a way that looks like a snarl when my face is in neutral. For those two reasons, I keep my ‘stache long and full enough so that it leaves the lip visible when I’m not smiling, it covers the lip when I am smiling, it looks balanced with the rest of my beard, and its bottom edge goes straight across when my face is in neutral.

  45. I started growing my beard last April 2007. It is now January 08 and I haven’t shaven. I have grown to really love having this much hair on my face. I doubt I will ever shave it now, and hope to have my own ZZ top beard in the next few years!

  46. Hey Steve,

    My beard has gotten really long over hte last month. It is so awesome! I can use it as a substitute for a towel!

  47. Anyone gets weird on my beard, I always reply:

    You should be thankful – you really don’t want to see the face lurking underneath this

  48. The hardest thing has to be that women hate beards. To me this is as ridiculous as if I hated breasts, and I simply don’t understand it – I’ve pondered many hypotheses, mind you, but it still drives me nuts. Although the ones who do like beards are a treat – if you can find one, and if she’s not some dumb slut (unfortunate personal experience). I’m a purist, you might say – no trimming (well, a very little bit of my mustache, but not so it “looks” trimmed, because I want to be “kiss ready”:P), no shaping, ‘wear it long, brown, curly like a “tribesman”. Hence, women hate this even worse, but I’ll be damned if I’ll let anyone keep me from being me! I’m sure all of you feel the same way. ‘Guess I’m just lookin’ for that sweet woman who’ll pet me like a dog:) All of you who are new to your beard, I encourage you to say with it! If you’re lovin’ it bushy, give it about 4 years! At present I’m about 6 months in to my new one – I had grown my previous one for about 4.5 years. Why did I cut it? Well, I also had nipple length ( and very thinning) hair, and I felt I needed a full “ritual” shearing – now I shave my head every day, and grow my beard, and it’s a yin-yan thing that I absolutely love. But I digress. We gotta fight the power, guys, I’m so sick of beards being considered something to be “cleaned” up – what’s the next stupid fashion, humans start removing “unsightly” fingers? (laughing)

  49. Hi guys…

    I’m facing a problem with my beard growth. Beard on my chin is not growing and it only patchy on Chin and moush..
    How can i increase my beard growth on chin?

    please share ur advise

  50. i am almost 11 months into growing my beard without cutting besides pulling at it lol

    but i havent had one person tell me that they like it…everyone who has somthing to say about my beard is either “when are you going to cut it”…”haha you like a caveman” or majority of the time is just “bad” looks lol

    it takes a strong willed person to grow a beard

  51. Chris,

    I’m sorry to hear that people have not been supportive and have been unkind to you. Hang in there, though. Don’t let people like that get you down. Good luck to you.

  52. Ok to start with Psychological studies claim that women tend prefer guys with a beard. My opinion on that would be it’s simply a personal prefernce and possibly changes with the present day fashions and trends and certainly does not apply to the majority.
    on the note of Uk psychologists trying to prove that a man who grows a beard might have something to hide may apply to guys who normally don’t but out of the blue or on a rare occasion as a major change approaches does grow one. I’m saying that with a bit of experience.
    Would like to know what everyone thinks…

  53. Ryan said: “The hardest thing has to be that women hate beards.”

    My reply is that if a woman doesn’t like you because of your beard she will find another reason to not like you if you shave.

    Thamara commented that: Uk psychologists trying to prove that a man who grows a beard might have something to hide”

    My reply: Having a beard makes you stick out in a crowd of cleanshaved faces. If I wanted to hide, I would conform to the “norm” and I use the word lightly.

  54. I would agree on the strong willed part. it sure take some Faith to hold these babies on our faces. i think beards are a excellent way of filtering out your friends and future spouses or present ones. mad props to all who grows these beauts. i love how facial recognition doesn’t work on babies faces and men with beards… fyi

  55. Been growing my beard for about 16 days now and hope to have it fully formed for an annual college reunion on December 12th. After 26 years I’ve finally grown a pair of balls and taken the beard plunge. However the neck itching was too much to bear so I shaved it off from my jaw line down and now I regret it as the rest looks a bit pathetic. If I’d found this support group earlier maybe I could’ve resisted being such a pussy and stuck it out or trimmed the neck line in a better way. I feel like I’m about to hit the neck version of ‘The Wall’ so I need all the support I can get dudes!

  56. ive been growing and shaving beards for a while and i guess by definition, working in a motorcycle shop is an extremely forgiving environment! let it grow and be proud!

  57. I am actually attending the same college reunion as Michael who posted on Novemeber 17th. I have yet to have had anyone mention my growth in a negative sense, like michael I too have been growing mine for close to three weeks now and the itching is getting to be very annoying if Im honest. I resisted shaving below my jaw line ( below my jaw seems to be the place with the worst itching ) but I feel I might have found the support on this website that I needed. Does anyone know of any practical solutions to this problem or is it just a necessary evil that must be overcome??? Keep up the good work my fellow ‘Beardies’ !!!!!

  58. I’m growing my first ever beard for November (or Movember), I’m 28 and I never thought it would come in so well. i love it and I’m thinking about keeping it for a while. Of course he wife hates it but i am standing strong. I’m less than 3 weeks in and she wants me to shave it for a banquet we are going to tomorrow night. I told her I would trim the “strays” and brush it down but it is staying for a while…….. she will get used to it.
    Grow on.

  59. Michael: Keep growing!

    Nick: Good to hear that!

    Martin: Just commit to man up and make it through the itching stage. Try applying some moisturizer or other skin-care products that are meant to help relieve itching.

    Cory: That’s great. Keep growing!

  60. As someone who was blessed with facial hair from an early age, I have received my fair share of negativity from others concerning my beard. I didn’t let it get to me and I persevered through many verbal onslaughts. When my beard finally came in fully and that last section connected (the mustache never came down quite long enough) I don’t think I had ever felt so happy. Though I’ve experimented with different styles since then, whenever I invariably get back to the full beard I feel so comfortable and complete. To all those contemplating a beard, I wholeheartedly encourage growing it out. This is something all men should do at least once in their life because it’s such an awesome experience. Persevere and keep your eye on the prize! It is definitely well worth the effort.

  61. I grew my my first beard over christmas break so when i got back to university it was a big shock to everyone and luckily enough I got all positive comments. I let it grew for about 2 month. it got nice and full.
    I recently shaved it which felt very nice to but miss it at times. I also got positive comments when it was gone. So the people who didn’t think much about it kept their comments to themselves which was also nice in a way. At first it felt strange as if something was missing but i got used to it. Now I have a light scruff is growing back and I love it.
    Growing a full beard it definitely an experience that every men should try at least once. You’d be surprise of your reaction once you shave it off

  62. I have resolved today to try and grow my first beard. Although I can’t grow a full beard ( sides and bottom of mouth, mustache unattached) I have resolved to let it grow the recommended 6 weeks. I really wish there was a way to make it grow fuller, but I will wait and see how this looks. At 21 yrs old I hope to grow a full wire brush some day.

  63. Im 17 and i want a sweet full beard but under my bottom lip and off to the sides of the corner of my lips are bald! haha ive been growing my beard for two weeks and ive been wondering if theres any tricks to make sure it grows in nice and full, i want to get a jump on it and make sure it grows good, any suggestions???

  64. Hey, just wanted to say thanks to the guy who said to scratch with my knuckles and thanks to whoever suggested moisturizing like crazy. I’m not sure which one worked, but it’s a huge help. Especially since my facial hair grows so slowly. It’s gonna take me forever to grow this damn beard and I’d hate to spend half of forever itching like a bee attack.

  65. Hey,
    I am growing a beard and it’s been three weeks now. The hair is long, but the problem is that it’s growing straight and not bending like it’s supposed to. so now i look pretty much like a porcupine, especially on my cheeks and mustache. Does anybody have a useful advice for me?

  66. Hello fellow beardsmen,

    Growing a beard you can be comfortable with is like any other endeavor you will undertake. It’s all a matter of the effort you choose to put into it. Any hair on the body will take whatever shape it damn well pleases as it grows, so you have to be dilligent about the desired results. I can only speak for myself here, but being part Greek, it wouldn’t take very long for my beard to start looking like King Leonidas leading his warriors against the Persians. I’m part Portuguese as well, so I’ve got the double whammy. I’ve learned I have to ‘train’ the hair to grow in the direction I want it to. That means rubbing the beard in a downward fashion during its

  67. (continued) initial phase. Treat your beard like you would treat the hair on your head. Shampoo it with a quality product, and CONDITION IT AS WELL!!! There’s nothing worse than a beard that won’t stop itching all day. I found a great product that can greatly reduce the itching and give you the control you need while you try to get that beast under control. It’s from a company called Kiehls and it’s called ‘Sunflower Preserving Conditioner’. You can use it throughout the day and it’ll keep the itching from driving you crazy. It keeps the beard hair supple and perceptive to shaping and grooming. just my 2 cents. Happy growing!!

  68. I started a Van Dyke back in November, much to the wife’s chagrin. So I have a good start, but 5 weeks ago, I decided to go for the full beard. Now I’m getting urges to pick up the razor and shave, I’m looking at a lot of shaggyness and grey areas.

    One good point, a new barber, without asking, will trim the goatee to help with the changes in growth.

    Glad I found this web site. In this commitment and long haul stage, there’s a lot of support.

    Thanks, Guys!

  69. I have two months with my beard,i’m not discouraged by what people tell me,except right now i am considering trimming each side of my beard,so that i can look cleaner.what encouragement is there for me to receive.

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