Growing out of your beard for the first time can be a fun and rewarding experience. It allows you to express yourself while still looking masculine and feeling attractive to yourself, and others. However, if you are new to growing out a beard you may have a few thoughts and questions, such as when to shave or trim your neck if at all.
The purpose of this article is to help you on your journey to grow out a beard that will turn heads, as well as make you feel masculine and sexy. We hope that after reading this article, you will understand where to start growing out your beard, if you should shave your neck, and what to expect for the first few weeks of beard growth.
Should I Shave My Neck Hair When Growing a Beard?
When you are growing out your beard, regardless of if it is your first time doing so or you just want to sport the bearded look again, eventually you will come to the point where you may be wondering if you should shave your neck during the hair growth process.
This is particularly true when you first start to grow your beard, as the overall beard will begin short and as a result, your neck will be more visible; nobody wants to look unkept, especially when you are adding something to your overall appearance. And while some guys can pull off the look of not shaving or trimming their beard, this is generally done when you have a full beard that covers the hair growth on your neck regardless.
Let it Grow at First
While everyone has different hair growth and the speed at which hair grows will be different for everyone, the consensus is that you will want to avoid shaving your neck for the at least the first 2 weeks, and ideally up to 4. The first few weeks when you are growing out your beard are crucial to gauge how fast the hair will grow, as well as determining what style of beard is best suited for your face. While this is personal preference, and some guys hate it when they have hair on their neck; while others don’t mind it and can pull it off quite well.
If you don’t want to completely shave off the hair on your neck, a good medium is keeping it trimmed down with a beard trimmer or clippers. While there are certain stages to growing a beard, it is important to know at what point you should start to trim or shave your neck.
Choose to either Trim or Shave
Trimming or shaving your neck while growing or sporting a beard will help you to look more refined and polished, as well as define your neckline. Shaving your beard will allow you to have a beard while still looking professional, especially if you have a job that required a professional look, such as a banker.
This is especially true for guys that have more of a round face, or a fuller one. Additionally, a man who has a beard that is well kept says a lot about them; for one, that they have a sense of sophistication and style. When you have a beard and you decide to shave your neck, your jawline becomes more pronounced and this is considered to be more attractive by society’s standards.
Timeline to Shaving Your Neck
Growing out your beard will be a different experience for everyone, as there are different rates at which your hair grows, and some guys can grow a thicker beard sooner than some. That said, following a timeline as a rough guide will help you to know when you should let your beard just do its thing and grow, and when you will want to start to shape it.
Shaping your beard will allow you to accentuate your neckline, and shaving or trimming your neck will make sure that you are keeping up the kept look while sporting your beard. Below is the timeline that would be a good idea to follow when starting.
For the first week or so, it is a good idea just to let everything grow out. If you are new to growing a beard, this is the best way to see what you are working with and the ideal way to shape your beard and create that neckline down the road. During this week, you will start with a 5’o clock shadow, then begins the stubble phase. This generally lasts 1-2 weeks before your beard starts to come in. However, if you have a fast-growing beard, this may be done in a shorter time frame.
For the next 3 weeks, the hair on your neck will be significantly denser and start to grow in a lot more. This is the phase realistically that you will want to think about trimming or shaving your neck. Failure to trim or shave your neck may result in it looking unruly, and you won’t want to appear unkempt. Another personal preference is if you choose to use a traditional razor (with at least 3 blades) or an electric shaver. I use an electric razor as I have found it to be less rough for my neck.
Week 6 and Onward
After the first few weeks, you are through the awkward phase and are can now begin to sport your manly beard. Depending on how long you are wanting your beard to grow and how fast your hair grows, it may be alright to stop shaving your beard as much as this point. I know that for me, I don’t like my beard to come below my jawline so I always keep my neck trimmed or shaved. After the initial 4-6 weeks, you can start to see how your beard is going to look, and what style works with your face shape and the natural growth patterns of your beard.
Benefits of Shaving Your Neck
There are many benefits to shaving your neck, regardless of if you are growing out a full beard, or just want to add some definition to your facial features with some stubble.
Maintains a Clean Look
Regardless of having a beard, shaving your neck can still give you that clean look. This will make it so that you are not looking unkept, and also allows you to maintain having a beard in a professional setting, such as for corporate jobs. It will always be a timeless look having a man with a beard that is looking clean, with a suit and tie. By growing your beard out to where you jawline is, and shaving your neck you can keep this look while still maintaining your individuality and that air of manliness that so many of us strive for.
Makes your Jawline a Main Feature
One of the main features of your face, your jawline, will become more pronounced if you trim or shave your neck while having a beard. This is also true for those men who have a rounder face, or more weight that they carry. It will allow your jawline to become more pronounced, which is a very handsome look to have; regardless of growing out a beard or not.
Upkeep is Minimal
Maintaining the look is easy to do, and it only takes a few extra minutes when you are getting ready for the day. This is especially true if you are simply trimming your neck, as it will only take another minute or so, and can be done when you are trimming the other areas of your beard as well. One of the best ways to incorporate this into your morning routine is to shave or trim your neck after you shower, and before you are finishing putting yourself together for the day.
Benefits of not Shaving your Neck
While there are benefits to shaving your neck, there are also some benefits to not shaving it, and letting the hair grow out.
It keeps you warm, and is better for your skin. Like anywhere on the body where there is hair, having hair on your neck will keep your warmer; especially in the dead of winter. Other than wearing a scarf, your neck will always be exposed during the cold winter months and not shaving it will allow the hair to keep you warmer during this time. Anything that will keep the winter’s chill from directly reaching your skin is a plus, and keeping the hair on your neck will accomplish this. In addition to keeping you warmer, it is also better for your skin to not shave your neck constantly. During the winter, our skin is more prone to drying out and becoming annoyingly itchy; having a beard on your neck will eliminate this all while keeping you warm. And if you have sensitive skin and are prone to razor burn or redness, simply not shaving your neck may be the best option for you.
Not shaving saves on time and money, you are saving on time in the morning (although as stated above, this shouldn’t take too long.) And while it may not take a long time to shave or trim your neck before heading out into the morning, sometimes you will be pressed for time. On those days, you may discover that you like the way it looks more when your neck is not clean-shaven. And if you are saving time by not shaving your neck, you are also saving money by not buying razors and shaving cream, or an electric trimmer.
It may make you look and feel more masculine Studies have shown that hair on a man equals masculinity; wherever it may be. That is of course the case in a beard. I have never looked at a man with a beard and though they did not look masculine, and the more hair you have on your face, the more masculine you will look and feel. Undoubtedly, men with beards appear more masculine and can be more intimidating to their colleagues and peers; giving them an advantage in the corporate world. Men who look and feel masculine exude an attractive air of confidence, and sometimes hard to find elsewhere.
Beards are Attractive In today’s modern world, full beards are considered to be extremely attractive, and sporting one may make you look and feel more attractive as opposed to shaving part of it off (your neck). Other people will notice this as well, and a much of our society has agreed that a man with a beard is sexy, looks more refined and dignified, and has an aura about him that is very attractive. This is especially true if you consider what was stated above, that a man with a beard is way more masculine than a man that shaves; appearance wise, anyway.
Should You Use a Razor or Electric Shaver
If you decide to shave or trim your neck, the next logical step would be deciding between a traditional razor, or an electric one. This should be given some thought, as the neck is far more sensitive than other areas of your face; or body for that matter. Because of this sensitivity, it is more likely to have razor burn or ingrown hair due to shaving; especially if you are one of the unfortunate men that have sensitive skin to begin with.
That said, you will want to make sure to take more precautions with shaving or trimming your neck. You know your body, and if you are prone to getting more ingrown hairs or razor burn, you may opt in to switching to an electric razor as opposed to using a traditional one with blades. Although you may not get as close a shave this way, your skin will thank you in the long run.
Common Issues when Shaving your Neck
Another common problem that you may run into when shaving your neck is the fact that the hair on your neck tends to lay flat, as opposed to sticking out like it does on other areas. Additionally, the hair on your neck can have different patterns of growth, even different than other areas on your neck. To get the closest shave, you may want to grow out the hair on your neck to determine what your hair growth patterns are, and form the best method for that close shave.
When going the route of a traditional razor, you will want to invest in a good quality shaving cream; as this can make all the difference in getting a close shave, as well as reducing irritation and ingrown hair. However, if you are planning on using an electric razor, you should choose one that is best suited for your needs. Some guys prefer the foil type electric razors, while I go for the ones that have seperate rotating heads. The hair on my neck tends to grow in different directions, and this has just been what I have found to work best for me.
Things to Avoid When Shaving Your Neck
As with shaving any area on your body, there are a couple of things that you will want to be aware of, and to look out for. While nothing serious, these points are worth taking into consideration.
A high neckline when you are shaping your beard
This is especially true if you are shaving your neck, it is important not to go too high up. This means that you will want your neckline to appear natural, and a lot of guys can struggle with this. By shaving too high up on the neck, you lose the accentuate effect that having a beard can have, and it will make your face appear to be fatter than what it is. Even if you do not have any extra fat on your face, shaving too high up can make it look like you have a double chin; and nobody wants to add unnecessary weight to their body.
Too trimmed or no mustache
Some guys will make the unfortunate mistake of deciding to over trim their beard, or simply forego the mustache all together. While some may be able to pull this off, the majority of us cannot and should not try to. If you are one of the guys that finds having a mustache to be annoying, simply make sure to keep the hair from growing over your lip, or trim the mustache down a considerable amount. However, you will want to make sure to blend it into the rest of your beard; otherwise you are almost going for the no-mustache look which is not a good look for most guys.
Keep it Clean
Regardless of how long your beard is, or what style that you are going for, you will want to make sure that your appearance is kept clean. This can be done by shaping your beard, trimming or shaving your neck, and making sure that your jawline is pronounced by shaping your beard correctly. Additionally, a lot of guys will shave the areas above their beards, as hair can grow here and it does not fall into the beard line that we are going for. In addition to shaping your beard, you will also want to keep it clean. Like the hair on your head, it requires regular upkeep to stay looking its best. Investing in products that are specifically designed with the beareded man in mind can accomplish this. Take care not to use anything too cheap, as this can dry out your beard, as well as the skin underneath.
All in all, deciding to shave your neck or not is entirely up to you, and you may find that a little stubble looks best on you. When you are growing out your beard, it is best to leave it completely alone for a couple of weeks so that you can see where your strengths and weaknesses lie as relates to growing a full beard. You may find that the stubble look for your neck works for you; or you may discover that you prefer the clean-shaven look with your neck. Beards are a great way to express your individuality, and when properly executed, can add to your masculinity and sex appeal.