Winter and beards go together like apple and cinnamon: many men take advantage of the colder weather to get bristly, and one of the breakout trends of 2020 has been the ‘lockdown fluff’, with Australian celebrities like Chris Hemsworth also jumping in on the craze.
But as warmer weather is slowly rolling in Down Under, we’re weighing up whether or not we keep our beloved bumfluff. Do you risk overheating in the Aussie summer, do you keep just a bit to get a head-start on Movember, or do you shave it all off in anticipation of summer lovin’? And what’s the perfect warm-weather beard?
We spoke to Australian barbers Jacob Martin and Richie Shohan, who related that it’s different for every man.
“It totally depends on the thickness and length of the beard, and shape of the face,” Shohan relates.
Shohan suggests that keeping a simple moustache or rocking an ‘anchor’ beard (think Robert Downey Jr.) as they “suit the warmer weather better as they are flexible looks and have lower hair density to let you feel more breezy… [But] any beard style looks great when it’s done professionally!”
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But if you’re dead-set on keeping the ‘Amish’ beard you’ve been cultivating during lockdown, Martin’s got some choice advice.
“Aerate your beard regularly with a wide-toothed comb to help detangle and help remove debris, and regularly wash your beard with specially formulated beard wash. Be aware of your work conditions as well – tradies will need to wash more due to dust, debris etc.”
Making sure you keep your beard nice and clean is particularly important in summer when your beard is likely to be exposed to more sun, sea and salt than usual.
“Scalp and face skin types are very different due to the PH levels of the face,” Martin relates.
“Be sure to use a wash that has been designed specifically for [your] face – no using Head and Shoulders to clean your beard! Also due to the climate here in Australia ensure you keep your beard moisturised and look at products that protect from sun & sea damage!”
“Use beard balm, moisturisers and oils regularly to help soften the beard cuticle – remember the beard bristles are the most coarse of all! This will also reduce dryness as the beard absorbs the face’s natural sebum which can result in dry and flakey skin… be careful when exposing your beard to harsh environmental conditions.”
How To Trim Or Shave Off Your Beard
If you are looking to take a razor to your follicular friend, don’t go in half-arsed.
“For the best shave try to steam the face or wash with warm water and massage the skin with your preferred shaving oil,” Shohan instructs.
“The natural steam will open up your pores and make your hair softer. Then apply shaving cream in circular motions to soften the hair before shaving. Avoid washing face with cold water and don’t rush! The key to get a clean shave lies in the preparation, technique and the aftercare. Shave twice using a fresh blade on the second shave. Soften your beard and foam it up.”
“Apply a cold towel to face or wash with cold water directly after [you] shave… it is important to dry your face by patting rather than rubbing it (rubbing could cause irritation). Then use [your] preferred aftershave and moisturiser.”
Ready to sculpt your summer beard? Check out our guide to the best beard and stubble trimmers on the market.