The Different Beard Growth Stages Explained
Growing a beard can be a long but enjoyable journey with more than a few steps. Those on the path to developing a full beard will often wonder what the experience will entail and what they can do to help the process along. What stages are there to get your beard where you want it to be, and is there anything you should be doing to keep your beard growing strong? We’ll take a look at these questions and what you can do to look your best while turning heads. Keep reading to find the beard growth stages and some things you should keep in mind along the way.
Beard Stage 1: Stubble Trouble
Beard stubble is not a bad stage to be in for many men. In fact, lots of women find beard stubble to be very attractive. This first stage is when you decide to put that razor down and let it all grow out. This exciting first step looks different for all men. Some grow dark 5 o'clock shadow within the first 12 hours, and some men will only notice light stubble. However, you shouldn’t pay too much attention to growth in the first week -- your full beard will be much more majestic soon!
You may feel some itchiness during this phase, so you will want to keep your skin very well cleaned and moisturized. Your beard hairs won’t be irritated like this after they are done forming from the skin and have made their debut into the air.
When you begin growing your facial hair, you will notice where it tends to grow in the strongest. These areas will be your strong points in the full beard. However, some areas may come in unexpectedly during the process to finish strong.
You will also notice different colorations and coarseness in your beard hairs. If you are getting well into your 20s, you may even notice a few silver strands peppered here and there. This is nothing to be afraid of. It adds to your character!
No man will be able to grow a full beard in the first week, so be patient and enjoy the first phase as it comes and goes. You can shave stubble in unwanted areas like the neck and high cheeks to avoid an unshowered look and play around with where you want to line up your beard when it comes in.
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Beard Stage 2: Noticeable Growth
The second stage of beard growth will generally begin after a few weeks. The awkward stubble and close-growth stage will phase out and be replaced with a much better-looking light beard. You will now be able to see how your beard will look and what strengths and weaknesses it may have.
The rule of thumb for beard length is that if it’s longer than an inch, it’s no longer stubble! During stage two, your beard may not have grown in perfectly, but it will be much better looking than your first few weeks (depending on the look you want).
Your beard may still be patchy in some places while it is nearly full in others, so try to be patient during this stage as well. Don’t make the mistake of comparing your beard to any of your beard idols! You will need more time to completely grow your facial hair.
As with all stages, it is important to keep your facial hair clean and moisturized. You will want to prevent dry skin and unsightly beard dandruff. It is recommended that you use a conditioning beard balm or beard oil to keep things well moisturized.
Beard Stage 3: Fully Formed
Stage three will come at different times for men, but after a month of uninterrupted growth, beards will usually be full. Of course, you can grow your beard for a year or longer while gaining inches and bulk to your facial hair, but having a “full” beard doesn’t always mean a long lumberjack beard.
Give yourself high praise for sticking it out through the other stages and all the maintenance you had to perform for a great-looking and healthy beard. By now, you can see clearly where your beard is strongest. For many, this will be the mustache and goatee area. You may need some more time to take care of any remaining patchiness on your cheeks.
One thing you should know about having a full beard is that it can dry out your face quickly if not properly maintained. Your whiskers use a lot more of the natural oil your face uses to keep them moisturized and healthy-looking. Also, avoid tugging on your beard or playing with it, as it can damage the hair over time and even lead to patchiness.
Once your beard is fully formed, it's time to consider trimming it. I know what you're thinking. You just grew it out! Well, a small trim can even out the beard and make it look much better. A good line-up with a straight razor will also do wonders for your beard profile. Make an appointment with an experienced men’s groomer who will do right by your new pride.
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Now that you know the stages of beard growth, you can get started more confidently by knowing what to expect. Never forget to treat your beard right and have fun in the process!