The 2014 Guide to Beard Styles (and the Hipster Beard Debate)

This one is for the guys (and, of course, for all the ladies who appreciate a man with facial hair or are interested in the debate surrounding the recent beard resurgence). If you’re looking for a contemporary guide to various ways of styling your beard, then this one is for you: you’ll have plenty of inspiration for beard styles. The same goes if you’re just curious about what is up with all the beards lately and want a pop culture explanation for the phenomenon. It’s the middle of summer, everyone’s mind is drifting towards vacation and plans and fun; in the midst of this summer-oriented atmosphere, crazy ideas also come to mind about what to do with one’s style during the hot season. For example, check out the monkey tail beard pictured below. Point made.

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Especially for the young and daring, summer equates not just with fun galore, but also with the time to do some temporary style changes which are only really suitable for this time of the year. That may be for various reasons – objective necessities like adapting to the hot weather, or purely vane reasons like the desire to adopt a style which may not be appropriate for formal environments like work or school. The last category of style changes is obviously the best.

The Chart of Beard Styles

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And since hardly anyone ever thinks of the guys when the subject of style for the season comes up, it was about time someone did a beard styles guide. For an almost endless source of inspiration, and also a valuable resource of beard etiquette (it’s important to be aware of the idea your beard transmits to the admirers), enlarge and download the image above. It contains everything you will need to know on the subject, though admittedly more on the classic side. After you familiarize yourself with some of these classic beard styles (or perhaps you already sprout a perfectly normal looking beard by now), it’s time to move on to the pro league.

Your source of inspiration for dramatic changes operated on just one beard should be, from now on, Isaiah Webb, aged 29, also known on the internet as Mr. Incredibeard. Famous on Reddit and Instagram and Tumblr and such, the San Francisco resident adopts various bear styles inspired by the suggestions of his fans and then modeled by his wife.

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If you feel daring and confident enough (and if the length of your facial locks allows it, of course), why not try adopting some of Mr. Incredibeard’s beard styles for a social event planned this summer? You’ll surely blow the mind of all your friends with it. Organize a Game of Thrones drinking game party or something and proudly exhibit the funniest of all the beard styles you browsed. Good luck with the beard modeling and have fun!

The Hipster Beard Debate

All the attention which beard styles and the obvious beard resurgence got lately started to pose some questions regarding the manliness of the whole thing. Since the interest in growing and styling a beard is mainly associated with the hipster movement who gets unnecessary and mean bashes as our own cultural scapegoat within the pop culture food chain, the beard has attracted some bashing of its own lately. For example, this post by Nicki Daniels praises how awesome a beard is, on one hand, but also expressed dissatisfaction on the other hand, for the fact that the once-manly beard has been sported mainly by “hipster” young men who have no idea what to do with the pair of balls nature endowed them with.

The debate, while maybe expressing some real feelings, is in my opinion a bit fake and far-fetched. Facial hair should be just as much a matter of personal taste and creativity just as any other body part; and trying to push men into conforming to expectancies about their gender is just as sexist as giving hell to a woman for not being “feminine” enough. Plus, there are plenty of beard styles which are fiercely masculine and awe-inspiring, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

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