A Decade with the Beard
For over ten years, my beard has been a part of my identity, a constant companion that has seen me through the special operations community, loss and ultimately starting a men's skincare business.
Today, I embark on a unique adventure: showcasing the impact of every beard guard length, from a #8 guard down to a clean-shaven look. This guide is more than about beard trimming; it's about embracing change and personal growth.
Starting with #8 Guard: The Comfort Zone
As I begin with the #8 guard, there's a mix of emotions. This guard represents the comfort zone, a familiar territory where the beard's fullness and rugged charm are still very much present. It trims just enough to give a tidy appearance while retaining the essence of a full beard.
It's perfect for those who want a neat look without sacrificing the beard's majesty. Using the #8 guard is like taking a gentle first step towards change – noticeable yet reassuringly subtle.
Or, if you are not looking for change, it is a great way to clean up a slightly unruly beard.
The Middle Grounds: Guards #7 to #4
The journey from #7 to #4 is an exploration of versatility. Each guard brings a new look, a new feeling.
With #7 and #6, I start to see a distinct difference, the beard begins to shape my face differently, more defined, more intentional.
The #5 and #4 guards are where the transformation becomes more pronounced. These lengths are ideal for those seeking a balance – the beard is still there, but it's more polished, more refined. This range is where you can experiment with styles, finding that sweet spot between ruggedness and sophistication.
The Bold Leap: Guards #3 to #1
Transitioning to guards #3 to #1, I enter uncharted waters. The #3 guard brings a sharpness and neatness that's strikingly different from the fuller lengths. It's a length that demands attention, showcasing the contours of the face in a new light.
Dropping to #2, the beard becomes an accent, a detail that complements rather than dominates.
Finally, with #1, it's a minimalist's dream – subtle, sleek, and understated. This stage is about bold choices and embracing a more radical change in appearance.
The Final Frontier: The Razor's Edge
Using the razor is the most poignant moment of this journey. It's not just about removing the remaining stubble; it's about saying goodbye to a part of myself that's been there for a decade.
The clean-shaven face in the mirror is both familiar and new. It's a canvas reset, a chance to rediscover myself. This final step is a powerful statement about change and personal evolution,
More Than Just Trimming
This beard trimming journey has been a path of self-discovery. Each guard length revealed a new aspect of my personality, from the ruggedness of a full beard to the polished sophistication of shorter lengths, and finally, the raw openness of a clean-shaven face.
Why did I shave my beard? Part of it was for this video. I've always wondered what different guards would do to my beard.
The other part, well, it is more personal. I was fortunate enough to participate in a healing psychedelic retreat for Special Operations combat veterans. That is what finally inspired me to do this.
I'll talk more about the experience in later posts but if you are suffering or know anyone who is, I cannot recommend professionally administered "plant medicine" enough. I you are interested, please check out the Heroic Hearts Project.
I hope this guide inspires you to explore the many facets of your personality through your beard style. Whether you're trimming for the first time or are a seasoned beard enthusiast, remember, it's not just about the beard. It's about who you become in the process.