Throughout history, different styles of beard have come in and out of vogue for many different reasons. In a recent report commissioned by Braun Styling, called Shaving Face: Grooming, Men And Masculinity, experts looked back on facial hair trends throughout history. Different styles of beared.
While the Ancient Greeks went whisker-free in a bid to look more like their clean-shaven gods, Roman emperors went fully bearded in imitation of their brawny leaders. Later, the Victorians were all about full beards, but the opposite became fashionable after the First World War thanks to the invention of the disposable razor.
But it wasn’t to last: after the financial crisis of 2008, there was another clear departure from the clean-shaven look that had come to characterise the powerful men of corporate America.
Things are different in the here and now, where no one style of facial hair takes precedence - the only real meaning is in finding your own personal look, and that means people are experimenting with different styles more than ever before.
In a recent study of 1,001 British men aged 18-34 conducted by Braun Styling, results showed that 82 per cent of 18 to 35-year-old men sported facial hair of some description, and that 28 per cent of them have completely overhauled their look within the previous two months alone.
Latest short beard styles
“The younger generation wants to try everything,” explains award-winning barber Parsa Rad, artistic director at The Refinery Mayfair salon. “They want to play with their look until they figure out what suits them best. They might come to one appointment with me and say, ‘I’m enjoying stubble right now’, but the next time it’s ‘I want to grow my beard’, and the next it’s ‘I want a long beard’. They want to experiment, nobody is judging them, and so they do.”
But it’s not just younger guys who are rethinking how their facial hair looks - older gents are mixing it up too, even if pressures like work and relationship commitments mean they’re not quite as likely to go from one style to another so drastically.
“I like to think, like a lot of men, that I kind of go back and forth,” says Christopher Oldstone-Moore, the 55 year-old author of facial hair history book Of Beards And Men. “I’m normally shaved, but I go through long periods where I wear a beard. I like a change.”
With today’s style being all about, well, finding your own, it’s all the more important to have a versatile styling tool that can handle different levels of sculpting and grooming. Brands like Braun are adapting and evolving to meet these new consumer needs with products such as its latest styling tool hero: the multi-grooming kits, which come with all the tools you need to tailor your designer stubble or sculpt your beard.
British men are feeling freer than ever before to experiment with their facial hair, so it’s time to do as the Romans do, right?
Regardless of your style, the detachable smart clipper combs on the Braun Multi Grooming Kit 3080 give you the precision and control you need to trim your facial hair to anywhere between 0.5 and 21mm. With dedicated heads for head-to-toe grooming too, you’ll be able to take control of your look quickly, safely and accurately. Available from Boots for £35 – click here for more details
Beard or no beard? How best to edit your style