Different types of beard styles. They’re everywhere these days, right? In our view, this is unequivocally a good thing, and we’ll explain why. Historically, beards have gone in and out of fashion but have always remained rock steady for certain rugged corners of the male world. The twentieth century brought advances in grooming technology that allowed for the safe and simple upkeep of a clean-shaven face, and beards fell out of general favor for a long time. Beards became associated with outlaws, mountain men, people on the fringe of society – notably not the movers and shakers who make the world turn.
In the past few years, all of that has changed. This is a very good thing for everyone.
With booming beard popularity, we get diversity. More diversity is always welcome because it means more folks get included. If your face naturally looks better with a solid beard, there’s no longer a social stigma against wearing one. If you can’t grow a giant face rug, you can at least sport a mustache if you want to – or not – because almost all options are acceptable now. If you are able to grow a healthy beard, the best news of all is that there’s a growing roster of trendy, attractive styles to choose from.
Now that beards are untethered from the idea of an outsider, anyone can sport facial hair without negative social impact, at virtually any place in society. Whether you’re a tattoo artist, a corporate lawyer, or an IT guru, you’re free to grow a beard without any worry of repercussions. In fact, you’re more likely than ever to be the envy of your friends, so long as you’ve got one that fits your look.
Benefits and Potential Pitfalls
That last sentence holds an important caveat when it comes to beards. When we survey the multi-faceted galaxy of beard styles worn in 2016, we can’t ignore the fact that some beards are worn better than others. Sure, there’s a style for everyone, and a face for every style, but that doesn’t mean the stars always align just right!
Like with any other clothing item, accessory, or hairdo, a beard must complement the big picture. Did you know that some beards go better with certain face shapes? Or that certain haircuts can preclude certain beard styles? It’s true, and it’s more important than you might think.
With the right beard for your face shape and hairstyle, your whole look can lock into place in a way that it never would with a cleanly shaved mug. Nowadays, it’s all about the complete picture. You can’t simply grow whatever facial hair comes naturally and hope for the best. Instead, you need to groom and cultivate the right beard. The rewards, as you’ll see, are undeniable.
You’ve probably seen someone with an ill-fitting beard. Maybe you’ve seen him this month. Maybe he’s looking at you in the mirror? If so, there’s nothing to worry about. This is one problem that humanity has handily solved!
We’re going to go over our 10 favorite beard styles, to better showcase the possibilities when it comes to your own facial hair success. When you see the variety on display, you’re sure to find something that hooks your interest. Armed with a bit of background knowledge on what makes a beard look right, you’ll be able to grow the best beard for you.
Also, check out our beard dye guide.
So without further ado, let’s check out this diverse array of fantastic beards to sport this year.
10 Different Types of Beard Styles You’ll Love
This look is for the trendsetter guys, the ones aiming for that stylish hotshot look, and despite the idea that it simply appears from a lack of shaving, this beard takes effort to maintain. Your hair will keep growing, so you’ll need to find the right trim level and keep at it every few days.
While the goatee enjoyed its peak popularity around 20 years ago, there’s no reason to ignore it if your face really fits the look. This small beard centers on the chin and helps elongate and accentuate the jawline. It’s also a good halfway point to test out the waters and see if a full beard could be right for you.
If you can grow one, go for it. This classic but amorphous style can work perfectly for guys with many differently shaped faces, and can be easily carved into one of several other styles, once grown. Pay attention to width, depending on your face shape!
The odd name begets a sort of odd style: this beard involves growing a standard full beard, but splitting the bottom into two segments below the chin. Think Captain Jack Sparrow, minus those little beads.
Now we’re moving around Europe, right? This beard is an old-school style, commonly connected to the lumberjack look. Connected to the sideburns, it’s similar to a full beard but allows the bottom to flare out quite a bit.
This unique beard gets its name from a 17th Century Flemish painter named – you guessed it – Anthony Van Dyke. It was his signature look, and is currently enjoying a bit of a resurgence in popularity. If you’ve got a defined chin, or you want to help define your chin, this one goes even further than the goatee does. The main feature is that the rest of the face must be clean-shaven, and the beard itself expertly shaped. This one requires maintenance.
This beard is one of the fullest around, and works especially well for men who have super curly facial hair. It’s large, long, and puffs out triumphantly. This beard will extend below your chin, while also billowing out on the sides. It’s a rather mighty specimen.
With visions of president Martin Van Buren dancing in your head, you might be clutching your clippers and thinking of sporting the mutton chops look. Don’t let us discourage you, brave soul, but take heed: this will look seriously silly on most men. If you can sport the kind of theatrical look, go for it. Just don’t call us when your girlfriend freaks out!
While not exactly a beard, this relatively popular facial hair style is another risky maneuver that can occasionally be pulled off with panache. If you’ve got a narrow face shape and aren’t afraid of experimenting, try growing one out. Better yet, trim the beard you’ve got until only the mustache is left. You might like what you see.
Face Shape Is Important
If you’ve got a square face, you’ll want to look for a beard that’s fuller down on the chin, with less on the sides. This helps elongate the face, and might even make you appear taller.
Similarly, if you’ve got a rounder face, you’ll want your beard to be heavily focused on the bottom, with a lengthy look that accentuates the tallness of your face. A beard that’s too wide can give you that dreaded baby fat look. Trust us; you don’t want the cheek pinches that come with that!
If you’ve got a more rectangular or oval-shaped face, feel free to grow those sides out a bit longer. Some horizontal action is nothing to worry about, when it’s only going to complement the shape of your head.
Finally, if you’ve got a perfectly average, slightly oval-shaped face, you’re basically the type-O blood of men. You can work with every style. This is your pass to go wild and experiment, finding the beard that you personally prefer!
You might have noticed one style not on our list: the neckbeard. This is basically the type of beard you grow if you can’t really grow a proper beard and you’re just not paying attention. It’s the anti-beard beard, so to speak. Partly due to social connotations (heard the term used in a derogatory sense lately?) and partly due to aesthetics, we don’t recommend this look for our worst enemies.
That being said, we hope you found a style in our list that seems both attractive and like it just might work well on your own face. Try it out, and see how things go. Remember to have patience, because many of these styles will take time to grow. You’ll have to endure the awkward in-between phase to be sure, but in the end it’s worth it. Your friends will envy you. Your significant other will want to pet you. You’ll be asked to toast weddings and kiss babies. Basically, you’ll be really thankful that you put in the work to grow a proper beard, one that matches your face and your sense of style.