Most dudes demonstrate masculinity through strength and athleticism. Measuring in at five-seven and 140 pounds, I try to explore alternatives for this. Since I’ve been able to grow a beard from the age of seventeen (yeah, I’m bragging), I’ve found it rather easy to fill the void.
The truth is, I love facial hair. I constantly notice, critique, and appreciate it on others, and I spend an absurd amount of time employing it on myself.
And I get bored of it a lot, too. Which is why I’m constantly changing it. So, for the sake of archiving, here is my facial hair experiments chronology.
It all started with a pair of sideburns. I was able to bust out the ‘burns as early as fourteen, but can’t seem to trace an image back from that era. Here’s one from a couple years later:
Though the ‘burns enjoyed a healthy tenure, I, like I said, was able to grow a full beard at seventeen. So I did:
A little scraggly? Maybe. But my Film Studies teacher told me I had the coolest beard, so take that babyface. Side note: I originally grew this debut beard to play a Film Studies teacher in my classmate’s short film.
Upon entering college, I toned it down and went clean-shaven to build friendships without intimidating my peers. Then, by the end of the school year, I 180’d my philosophy and went straight stash:
Needless to say, it didn’t last long.
After a beardless summer, I decided it was time to bring back the facial hair. Before I went full, though, I entertained a preliminary experiment:
Not everyone is into the soul patch, but I like to think it worked.
When I did grow the rest out, I opted to hold the ‘stache. Probably my subfacialhairconscious trying to make amends for before.
Then, by some act of mystery and impulse, I did this:
(Another short-lived stint.)
The summer after my sophomore year saw a solid full comeback:
And by my junior year I was back to experimenting. Neatly-trimmed beard, sans-connectors beard, Lincoln-beard revisited:
But by the next summer I grew it all back to rage harder than ever:
Only to hack it all off for mutton chops (what started as a gag for a ‘60s themed party became a two-week lifestyle):
Senior year had two new full beards, interrupted by a second chinstrap:
For some reason, I was more comfortable with this execution, as you can see from my stolid expression…
During my last semester of college I was inspired to revive the “sans-connectors” look:
(Relax, I was going to a Valentine’s Day party.)
Finally, after one more full germination, I shaved for what would be my longest facial hair hiatus to date. Now, as one officially out of college, I realized it’s time for something new—a style that screams “Look out, world, I am a man!”:
The Van Dyke beard. Little did I know at nineteen, all my mustache needed was a goatee to transform trashy to sophisticated.
So there you have it. What’s next for my facial landscape? Who knows—I’ll check back in another nine years. Until then, have a very happy No-Shave-November and make sure to look out for me here.
I’m writing this now in May 2014. 2013 was pretty beardless. I had a goatee, with connectors, for a bit:
But I really came here to share that I recently grew this, my best beard to date:
And then I shaved it. But at least I made this cool Vine in doing so:
Signing off again for now. Check back in a year or so!