The 4 stages of growing a beard: how to move from hairless to hipster with no worries.

how to look after your beard

Are you thinking about growing a beard? Good move. Trouble is, the journey can be arduous. What are the different stages of growing a beard?

As it turns out, there are a few stages of beard development to get through before you have your ultimate full fuzz effect.

We’ve written this article so that you know what to expect and when. Plus, we’ve included some killer tips to help you get to the finishing line.

Stage 1: The stubble start

The first and in some ways the most enjoyable stage of growing a beard is to stop shaving for a few days. Now, how long this will go on for will depend on your rate of facial growth.

Ultimately, we’re all different and facial hair growth varies massively from man to man. The average guy in the UK will take around a week to let his stubble grow out.

However, hair colour matters. If you’ve got dark hair, then the first stage of your beard will probably materialise in about 5 to 7 days.

Meanwhile, if you have blonde or grey beard hair, then you’ll probably be looking at a 2-week wait before you’ve hit the end of the first stage of growing your beard.

During the first stage of growing your beard you’ll start looking fairly stubbly pretty quickly, but you simply need to let it grow out.

If you’re starting to feel itchy and scratchy it’s already time to use some beard oil. However, during this first stage you’re probably better to stick to the grüum daily moisturiser and simply massage it into your stubble.

Now that you’re growing a beard, it’s absolutely essential to keep your skin in tiptop condition. A beard is about making a fashion statement, not punishing your body. As such, growing your beard shouldn’t be arduous.

The aim isn’t to have an amazing mountain of a beard sitting astride a spotty face. Therefore you must be washing your face using high quality cleaners, such as the grüum exfoliating face wash. This will help cleanse the skin under the beard and ensure you keep looking fresh faced during the first stage of growing your beard.

Stage 2: Growing pains

We can’t lie – the second stage of growing your beard out is the really tricky one. It’s not a closely guarded beard-growing secret – it’s clearly the stage where most guys give up.

During the first week or two of not shaving you’re probably enjoying the novelty. However, it’s now been going on for the best part of a month so this initial novelty has worn off but…

… now’s the time to reintroduce the razor.

We’re trying to look stylish, remember? We don’t want you looking like a guy who’s been on a three-week bender.

Therefore, you need to start sculpting your beard.

It’s pretty easy. Simply decide on where your lines are going to be. The first one to decide on is the neck. How far down do you want the beard to be growing on your neck?

If you’re particularly hairy the beard could end up flowing into your chest hair – this is a look that no one wants. The best place for your neckline is around an inch above your Adam’s apple.

Apply shave gel and massage into the bottom of your beardy stubble on the neck. It’s worth using a semi-transparent gel as this will allow you to know exactly where you’re shaving.

Now shave in small downward movements across the line at the same level. Then repeat this exercise on your face cheeks, but this time pulling the grüum razor across down in one movement from the side of your face towards the mouth.

It’s really a personal decision about where you want your upper line to sit and will probably depend partly on the density of your beard on your cheeks. If you’re a little patchy on the cheeks (and many guys are), go lower.

Now you’re in the second stage of the beard growth there are a few things that are musts.

First, keep washing your face with an exfoliating face wash.

You need to be doing this at least twice a day. It’s vital to ensure that you are massaging it into your skin from the forehead and all the way down to your Adam’s apple on your neck.

Also, get the exfoliating face wash really under the beardy stubble. At this stage it’s probable that elements of your skin are still visible through your beard.

You really do want to keep that skin clean and even more importantly you want to avoid ingrowing hairs. Ingrowing hairs are the antichrist of beards. If you get one at this stage in the beard growth it can simply stop you in your tracks. Thus, always exfoliate.

Your stubble is now almost certainly a little itchy and will certainly feel scratchy. If you’re lucky enough to have someone who wants to kiss your face, you need to work on getting it to be less scratch and tear and more smooth and lush.

This is where beard oil comes in.

Beard oils are the key to a good beard.

A good beard oil is the foundation of a good beard and it’s essential to start using one in the second stage of growing a beard. grüum have three distinct scents of beard oils; Earth, Wood and Citrus.

The purpose of a beard oil is to nourish and flourish your beard. However, just as importantly is softens the facial follicles that make up the beard. The essential oils help your beard to grow and make the hairs silky smooth.

So, now when that lucky person goes in for the kiss they don’t come away with a scratched and torn face.  However, what will they think about the smell?

Yes beards, unless maintained, start to smell even during the second stage of the beard growth. The other issue that some people start to find is beard dandruff. This is where the skin under your beard starts getting dry and flaky.

Both problems can be resolved with a good beard wash. Normal shampoo is designed to wash and clean the hair on your head.

You can use it on your beard, but the hairs on your face are quite different to the ones on your head and normal hair shampoo will dry out the beard stubble.

This will then make them sharp and scratchy; thus negating the purpose of using a beard oil.

Whereas a good quality beard wash or shampoo will soften, nourish and cleanse your beard as it’s engineered specifically for beards. grüum’s beard wash (called bard) doesn’t wash away the essential oils from your stubble and will promote the growth.

Stage 3: The mush with the bush

The penultimate stage of growing a beard is the bushy stage.

Everyone’s seen a guy with one. It’s starting to look like a full-on beard. There’s thick lush patches of beard across the face and neck. There’s the equivalent of a Nigel Mansell moustache above the top lip.

However, you’re still not there yet.

There’s a huge difference between owning a bushy mess and having a stylish beard.

This is the last difficult hurdle to face. And it’s the one where it’s easiest to fail.

During this stage, loads of guys will spot a random colour in the beard or find rogue bald patches.

For instance, a black beard with a grey and/or ginger sprouting patch that’s marooned on its own.

Of course, you can either leave the random coloured patch alone, or you can try and deal with it. Some guys will look to dye it out.

It’s not cool and it’s certainly not natural, but if you want to dye your beard it’s your choice, but the beard experts at grüum would encourage you to you embrace that tuft of ginger beardy stubble.

Meanwhile, bald patches of beard stubble are much harder to get past, but it is possible.

Use a beard oil to help to spruce the surrounding areas and some people believe the essential oils will enhance growth of the beard during this stage of your beard growth.

Stage 4: The maintenance man

Congratulations! You’re now the proud owner of a beard.

The work isn’t over though – the next phase is all about maintenance. Over the coming days and weeks, it’s common to see multiple areas that look like they’re getting a little wild.

The moustache above the upper lip is a particular hot spot that needs looking after. This area can become a little unwieldly if you’re not careful. There’s nothing worse than munching through a steak and realising it’s now entwined with beard hair.

Regardless, cutting or trimming any your beard isn’t the answer (not just yet anyway).

The only real solution to taming a beard is beard or moustache wax.

This can reign in those hairs that are going off on their own. grüum have three distinct scents that align with the beard oils and will keep your beard under control. The grüum beard wax is one of the softer varieties and is reasonably easy to mould and distribute throughout the beard.

Ultimately, it’s super important to keep on top of maintenance and nourishment.

  • You should be using an exfoliating face wash twice a day.
  • Washing your beard a couple of times a week with a dedicated beard wash.
  • Massaging beard oil into the stubble at least once a day; if you’re going out that evening pick a scented oil that suits the occasion.
  • Use beard wax to control the shape.

How long does it take to have a full-grown beard?

It varies from person to person, but on average, the full beard growth cycle takes around 6 to 8 weeks to have a full-grown beard.

You know the journey and you’ve got all the tips you need to make your beard-growing journey as pleasant as possible.

And, once you have your beard, then comes the exciting part – you can now decide on your style.

You can opt for the long pointy beard (but this will require more time to grow) or full the bush. The best thing about a beard is that you can change it and amend it throughout the year.

The after party

There are a few key points to remember now.

Let’s start with those lines. It’s essential to keep the lines sleek. This requires a quick daily shave along the skin above the line on the cheeks. Don’t forget to do this.

A full bush beard with a smattering of light five o’clock stubble loses the look. However, it’s not just the line on the face that needs maintaining; don’t forget that neckline. Always use the shave gel (grüum’s is transparent and this is exactly what you need).

However, you now need to maintain the bush and not let it get out of hand.

You should trim your beard with scissors (ideally thinning ones) about once a week. We’d suggest doing this after washing your beard with you bard beard wash.

When you trim always condition afterwards with beard oil. Now you have a full beard there’s a daily routine to maintain it. Each morning wash your face, and under the beard, with your face wash and then moisturise the skin on the face and the neck.

Then decide what type of day it is. If it’s a business day you should be using a beard wax and give a full massage throughout it and then a comb. If it’s a leisure day have a think about just using an oil. Then in the night, before bed, wash the beard again with exfoliating face wash. There’s no need to apply beard oil before bed.

You’ve got a full bush beard and you’re now a real man.

No doubt.

However, remember with such greatness comes great responsibility. It’s all about the beard maintenance from this point on.