Saturday, 28 May 2011

Beard Sage Advice #17: Trimming

It is truth universally acknowledged, that a single person in possession of a beard, must be in want of a trim on or at around a weekly basis.
I am here to concur.
Scientific experimentation conducted on yours truly's beard renders the above obvious. No matter how long my beard is, inconsistencies in my rate of hair growth meant that things stop looking neat after a about a week. Without a trim, there are too many stray hairs popping here and there (most notably white ones).
A week is also the rough amount of time it take for facial hair around the lips to get long enough to rub against your lips, which - in my book - is one of the more annoying aspects of having a beard.

With the above observation accepted, the question then becomes - how worthwhile is it to have a beard in the first place?
Me, I chose to have a beard purely for reduced maintenance. I hated having to shave ahead of every work day. However, given the need for a weekly trim, which is better - short shaves five times a week, or a more laborious trim once a week?
Time wise, it appears we are talking of roughly the same investment. Five shaves a week, at about five to ten minutes each, is not too different to the half hour or so it takes to set the hair trimmer up, trim the hair, and then do all the cleaning and trimmer maintenance (i.e., oiling). I consider cleaning important: I really hate those ubiquitous little hairs you get everywhere after shaving or trimming. Their presence could easily mean fellows of your household are alienated by the entire beard idea.
There is, however, a significant advantage to trimming a beard as opposed to daily shaves: you can do the trimming at a time of your choice, and it doesn't really matter if you do it a few days earlier or later. And choice, my friends, is all that matters.

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