A man trimming his beard with a Wahl trimmer.

How to Trim Your Beard

With expert instruction, there’s no reason you can’t trim and maintain a stylish, picture-perfect beard. The key is using the right tools for the job, having confidence and grooming often. Matt Ranaudo walks you step-by-step through the trimming basics. The key: trim with guide combs and clean up without guide combs. You got this!

How to Trim Your Beard Step-by-Step

  • 1

    Select Your Beard Style (and your Mustache Style)
    Before you begin styling take a moment to consider what beard style you want to achieve (you’re looking for a style that will enhance your face shape) and ensure you review corresponding mustache styles. You’re the full package, think of your haircut, beard and mustache that way. Now that you have an overall vision of what you’re going for, let’s go for it.

  • 2

    Start with a Clean Face
    Wash and dry your face before you trim your beard. Then use a styling comb to brush your facial hair in the same direction.

  • 3

    Select Guide Combs
    Use trimmer guide combs to achieve a desired length. If you’re a first-time beardsman, don’t choose the shortest guide comb first (the shorter the guide, the closer the trim). You can always trim a little more to find the beard-length that flatters your face best.

  • 4

    Start to Trim
    Now start to define the shape you want. Remember, cutting against the grain cuts more hair. Cutting with the grain cuts less hair. Longer beards should be trimmed in the direction of hair growth. Shorter styles can be trimmed in either direction.

    Always start trimming your beard just above your Adam’s apple. (A natural divider between your beard and neck, and the center of your beard.) Start by working towards one ear to get a straight line on one side. Then go back to the center, and work towards the other ear. Don’t go ear to ear. This will avoid an uneven line. You don’t need to make your beard too rounded (unless that’s the look you want). A slight curve will look great.

  • 5

    Remove Guide Comb For detailing and cleaning up stray hairs, use your trimmer without a guide comb. Check the symmetry of your beard. Make sure your mustache looks nicely balanced. Do a quick sweep of the ears, sideburns and nose while you’re at it, and you’re almost done.

  • 6

    Shape Up to Finish Once your beard is shaped up, consider a small dab of beard softener for a fresh looking (and smelling) beard. Beard softener moisturizes the skin and helps your beard and mustache stay soft.

What You’re Asking About Beard Trims

What Tools Do You Recommend for the First-time Beardsman?
If you’re growing a beard for the first time, or trimming it at home, invest in reliable, high-quality tools: trimmers and shavers. Other helpful items: Beard wash to keep your skin clean and to avoid skin irritations. A beard styling comb or brush to remove tangles as your facial hair grows. And beard oil to keep your skin moisturized. Finally, for styling, consider a small dab of beard softener for a fresh looking (and smelling) beard.

What Does Daily Beard Trim Maintenance Mean?
No matter the length of your beard, to keep it looking awesome you need to care for it regularly. Wash and dry it daily, keeping a close eye on your skin to make sure it’s not getting dry or irritated. Comb through it, like you would your hair. And a little beard softener to keep your beard on style. As your freshly trimmed beard grows out, you might notice a little unevenness, don’t be afraid to go back and touch it up.

What to use

Need help deciding what you need?

Wahl offers trimmers and grooming kits that let you achieve the look you want and keep it looking great.

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Beard Trimming Steps Up Close

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