Let’s face it: short beard styles are in. You can whine, scream, kick and scratch all you want but it won’t change the fact that men are getting fuzzier – and by virtue, more clueless about how to deal with it. A beard requires work. It requires care. Letting your face grow uncontrollably will leave you looking like Chewbacca after getting sucked through a propulsion vent on the Millennium Falcon (sorry, Star Wars fever knows no bounds).
Bottom line? Groom yourself, fool! A nip here and a tuck there goes a long way to transforming your face from hobo to connoisseur.
As hairstyle is an important ingredient to the whole face-beard-head-neck pie, many of the styles you see will have a specific hair component as well. Don’t worry, you’ll find no mention of top knots here.
10 Short Beard Styles – Going Beyond the Goatee
1 | The Beckham.If you’re going to model your facial hair after anyone in particular, you could do a lot worse than the world’s most attractive footballer (sorry Christiano). Unlike many celebrity beard growers, David Beckham always keeps his beard low and tight. The shape of the mustache perfectly compliments his playful half-smirk and angular facial features. In his case, the short cut fades perfectly into his side hair to create a cohesiveness with the top-cut. Taking notes?
The thing to keep in mind with this style, or with any style for that matter, is the shape of your face. If you’ve got rounded cheeks and are on the girthy side of chin girth, you might want to go with something else. Any barber will be able to make that call for you, but if you’re going rogue, keep in mind your own features when it comes to choosing a style that best fits what you’ve got going on. You’ve been warned.
With that in mind, a sharp, boney composition works well with this style. Any hair style can look great with this short beard styles cut, as long as the transition is properly accounted for. Fade away, baby!
2 | The ‘Barely There’ Fu Manchu.Johnny Depp has made a career out of this one. Little bit of mustache, little bit of soul patch, and even less on the chin. It’s a whisper of a style that says: “Hey there, I’m a beard. And even though I’m not taking over this man’s face, I still add value.” If you have the complexion and cheek bones to pull this off, I recommend you do so.
It’s not easy, though. Precise cuts and meticulous persistence is required to keep this style fresh. I’m talking every day grooming. If you start to surround the meek facial hair accents with stubble, things get sloppy and get sloppy fast. Obviously you aren’t going to be frequenting your local barber everyday, so get good with that straight razor. You’ll need that level of persistence to keep things tight.
3 | The Vanilla Goatee.I know I said I wasn’t going to go there, but you can’t go wrong with a classic goatee. Keep it short, grow it out, puff it up or comb it down – the goatee is your oyster so groom it as you see fit. The real key is to have a plan of attack. Again, know your face and pick a short beard styles shape that compliments it. The goatee will draw particular attention to your nose and mouth, whether you are trying to cover something up or make something pop.
Hugh Jackman, Ryan Gosling, and Colin Farrell are a just a few celebrities who’ve made the goatee their bitch. Follow their example and you’ll be just fine.
4 | The Handlebar.Although commonly slotted into the mustache category, I’m throwing it in with short beard styles as well. The handlebar was made famous by old-timey strong men and Hell’s Angels, but don’t be too quick to discount this one for your own style. A thick handlebar isn’t just about facial hair. It’s an identity; an ethos; a way of life. Either embrace the bravado and machismo that goes along with the handlebar or simply leave it at home. I strongly suggest investing in a dark pair of mean looking sunglasses as well.
Hulk Hogan had one of the most iconic handlebars of all time, but considering he’s turned out to be a misogynistic racist, you might want to model yours after somebody else. See Nick Offerman (aka, Ron Swanson).
5 | The Soul PatchActually, I only included this one on the list because you should NEVER try and pull it off. Sometimes it’s more important to know how NOT to do something, right? The soul patch is awful. It’s never been in style and will make you look like an ameture. You could be Yo Yo Ma for christ’s sake and people would take your for a high school cellist if you walked around with a triangular shaped rat patch under your lip.
The only circumstance where a soul patch might be acceptable is if you’re dressing up as the douchiest guy in your office for Halloween. Girls hate it, guys laugh at it (not in a good way). If you’re desparate on having the patch as part of your arsenal, be sure to at the very least pair it with a bit of chin or mustache hair. A soul patch needs friends, because you won’t have any if you try and rock it solo. Got it? Good.
6 | The Chin Strap.Also known as the post-pubescent Justin Timberlake. If you’ve made a living off exuding clean-cut boyish charm, the chin strap is a good way to burst onto the facial hair scene. It both proves to the world you are capable of growing a decent short beard styles, but doesn’t cover up the facial features you covet most. However, I should warn you: rocking a chin strap can run the risk of making you look like you don’t know the first thing about grooming yourself like an adult. It’s a fine line – one that I trust your judgement to identify.
Hair is an important aspect of a convincing chin strap. What good is a chin strap if you aren’t wearing a helmet? A solid mustache doesn’t hurt too. Zac Efron is a perfect example of someone who made the transition from boy to man with a well-timed chin strap. Fred Durst is not. Woof.
7 | The TwirlA solid bad-guy-from-a-western-movie mustache actually provides a good compliment to the soul patch. Yes, the same soul patch I eviscerated only a few paragraphs ago (I told you it needs friends, didn’t I?).
The twirl can be a tad high maintenance, so I advise you to venture into this territory with caution. You’ll need a slew of top shelf creams, oils, and balms in order to properly shape it so as not to look like an insane person. You still might look like an insane person, but at least make it look intentional.
8 | The Almost Beehive
If you can get your barber to shape it once, you should be good to go for a few weeks before things get out of control. Get yourself some solid beard oil and a comb to keep the bees from escaping the hive.
9 | The Van DykeWanna look like Brad Pitt? Well, chances are that’s never going to happen. Sorry to burst your bubble but…you’re just not. Want the next best thing? Get the Van Dyke!
A subtle mustache paired with a pointy goatee is the Van Dyke’s bread and butter. Shaping the chin hair around the mouth and down to a point is the key. High maintenance? Maybe. But if you pull if off you’ll set yourself apart from all other short beard styles wearers at your local hipster coffee shop. You won’t even pretend to be reading medieval Russian poetry to get the mousy baristas to notice you!
10 | The “I Woke Up Like This”Yes, stubble can be tamed. If you’ve got the facial growing prowess of an Italian grizzly bear, you’ll be able to pull this off. Even if you’re on your way from clean-shaven to full-grown man-beard, stubble can be an important part of your intermediary success. Don’t let it grow wherever it wants. Chanel it. Guide it. Shape it. Use the stubble to highlight your jaw line or advert attention away from an unsightly mole.
Be warned, though: girls love stubble until they hate it. A lush carpet of newborn facial hair will catch a lot of smitten looks, but closing the deal could prove difficult. You think stubble is irritating to your face? It’s sandpaper to theirs. Proceed with caution but either way.. trying different facial hair styles can be a fun hobby.