Whatever your beardivation, and whether you’re trying to grow out a man mane, or just keep something short and simple, the neckline beard conundrum really can’t be ignored.
Let’s face it – nothing good comes from the neck beard (i.e. when your “beard” is racing down your neck to warmly greet your chest hairs).
It’s definitely not a professional look, it’s downright uncomfortable, and seriously – it makes you look like the ape-man; it’s not likely to turn any heads (at least not in a positive way).
So, yeah – you should care about making sure you have an actual neckline to set off your beard. You’ll look more professional, feel better, and can be proud of how sharp you’ll look.
But finding and trimming a good neckline can be a bit of a mystery.
Where exactly is this invisible line, and how do you trim it consistently? We can help you out with that.
Where Is a Proper Beard Neckline?
First, we do have to acknowledge that if you are trying to keep up a deliberate, particular beard style, the neckline may vary.
For some beard styles, a faded neckline, or a shorter one may work best.
However, for the average guy just wanting to grow out his beard or keep a simple short “box” beard, there is pretty solid “proper” line to aim for.
It is actually easy to find, so we want to keep the explanation simple.
Imagine there is an invisible line starting just below one ear lobe, traveling underneath your jaw and up to connect to just below your other ear lobe.
The lowest point of the neckline will rest right where the underside of your jaw slopes down and meets your neck (like a strap on a bike helmet).
Everything underneath the line can (and should) go. Still a bit fuzzy on the line?
The Basic Tools
Alright, so now you know how to find a good beard neckline, but you need the right tools to get the job done.
Beard comb: before you shave or trim, you should always comb out your beard first to remove any tangles and knots.
This also helps you get a better feel for its length and where the growth line is. You can use a beard brush or comb, but combs are the most convenient and compact, and can get the knots out more efficiently.
There are obviously a wide variety of trimmers to choose from with just as wide of price ranges. If you don’t already have a trimmer you’re pleased with, you’ll want to keep a few things in mind to help you find the right one.
Beard shaping tool: If you want a way to guarantee better consistent lines and a faster way to get it done, we suggest using one.
You can also check out our Beardoholic All-in-One Beard Shaping Tool. What’s great about our beard shaper is that it is made from clear plastic, which is both more durable and practical than other materials, such as wood.
Because it is clear, it helps you keep an eye on where your beard actually is as you line up the tool. It also provides 4 different types of lines and angles so that you can achieve the beard style you want.
Use it for cheek lines, sideburns, and of course, your neckline. Finally, it also comes with a built-in comb for the most convenient trim and style session yet.
Some Quick Tips Before You Trim
Alright, so now you know how to identify a good neck line, and you’ve got your basic tools.
If your head is tilted down and/or your skin isn’t stretched, the skin can bunch, meaning you’ll end up missing a spot and/or cut yourself, especially if you decide to use a electric razor instead of trimmers.
How to Trim a Beard Neckline: Free Hand
Okay – so you know how to find the neckline, you have your proper tools and some good reminders to keep in mind. Now – how to actually create a nice, well-trimmed beard neckline.
There are a couple of ways you can go about this.
If you prefer to trim free hand, that keeps the process simple, but you will need a very steady hand, patience, and will want to be extremely confident about where that invisible neckline is.
Draw that imaginary line from just below one ear lobe straight down underneath your jaw to where it slopes to meet your neck (about two finger widths about your Adam’s apple) and back up around to just beneath your other ear lobe.
Set your beard trimmers to at least two levels shorter than your beard length. Make note of what setting you use so you can continue to use it when working on your neckline. Even if you are growing out your beard, you want to keep the neckline and the growth on your neck short.
Clip everything below the imaginary neckline.
Added tip – if your chest is particularly hairy and prone to creeping up your neck, take this opportunity to trim the whole neck area so no hair is popping up out of your shirt collar.
And you’re done. You can of course do this with a razor if you want an even tighter shave, but just remember to be extremely careful and make sure you keep your skin taut with your fingers, else you’ll be likely to cut yourself.
How to Trim a Beard Neckline: Beard Shaping Tool
By now, you should have seen enough examples of beard shaping tools to get the idea – it’s basically a stencil for your face.
It is an easier way of ensuring that lines are symmetrical and even, and it helps with line placement such as in the case of finding where the neckline should be.
A beard shaper also gives you more confidence that you’re shaving in the right place and the right angle, so it will help speed up the process as well.
When using a beard shaping tool on your neckline, choose one of the sides that will work best with the contour of your neck (usually a curved side), hold it in place along the neckline, and shave the hair beneath the tool and right up to it.
You will need to place the tool on one side to shave one half, and then switch it over to the other side to shave the other half.
You may have a small middle section that you will have to do by free-hand depending on the shape of your tool.
Also, check out our article, “Beard Shaping Tool – Shape Your Beard Like a Master Barber” for the full down-low on why a beard shaper should be in every guy’s beard grooming kit, and some how-to’s on a bunch of different beard styles you can achieve using one.
Go Make That Neckline!
So, now you’ve got the skinny on why a sharp neckline does actually matter and you’ve got some great tips on how to find it and trim it up.
Tomorrow morning when you’re doing your morning beard-routine, remember to give the neckline some TLC. It’s as easy as:
Before trimming a beard neckline, it’s useful to know that the higher neckline looks better on shorter beards, while lower suits better to men with long beards.
Do you need a neckline?
Honestly, you don’t. However, some men often experience discomfort and itchiness when their neck hairs become untamed and out of shape.
Although not needed, the well-trimmed neckline is a great addition if you want your beard to appear thicker from a side view.
Bad beard neckline makes even the most handsome man look like he’s got a double chin. Bad neckline occurs when you shave the neckline too high.
This mostly happens to men who are new to the beard-growing process. They often don’t know how to define the neckline accurately.
One of the most common errors they make is trying to determine the neckline too early.
Feels like the end of the world, and your beard, but in reality, it’s nothing that some patience and commitment can’t solve. The best thing, you don’t even have to start growing a beard all over again.
Having a good beard neckline, on the other hand, is the more natural look that doesn’t stand out or contrast with the unshaven parts of your face.
What neckline style is for you?
There are two key things to consider when deciding on the neckline that will suit you the best. Those are the shape of your face and the length of your beard.
In both cases, you are going to need the right tools. A handheld mirror also comes in handy here because it can help you determine the shape your beard grows.
Men with a stubble beard will find it easier to make a neckline. Just a slight trim around Adam’s apple will be enough.
Those with long beards will find here the instruction on how to achieve the perfect neckline.
How to trim beard neckline with a razor?
If the razor is your tool of choice in making a beard neckline, know that there are multiple choices. You can either go with a single blade razor or multiple blade razor.
Single blade razors tend to be sharper than those with multiple blades.
In addition, these razors can get a more precise trim because you can easily judge where will the shaving start. Also, you will avoid the irritation that comes with the use of razors with multiple blades.
Based on the goal you want to achieve with your neckline, you’re going to have a few different types of razors at your disposal.
1. Safety razor
2. Cut-throat razor
All these types of razors are designed to get you a close shave while running the blades across your skin just once.
1. Safety Razors
Safety razos are the most common of all single blade razors. For the users of multiple blade razors, safety razor will look a little small and sharper in the beginning.
Getting the right angle is usually the mistake beginners are making, and that’s why they often end up with a few nicks. But after you learn the technique, it becomes a piece of cake.
Blades on these razors are replaceable and very cheap. That’s why the safety razor is the best choice for men who don’t want to spend long hours in taking care of it, while saving some bucks along the way.
2. When appropriately sharpened, the cut-throat razor will get you the closest shave.
Sharpening adds to this razor’s appeal, but it’s also the most challenging thing to take care of. It requires knowledge of the technique known as stropping.
You have to perform this technique every time you shave the neckline with a straight razor in order to realign the blades and maintain the sharp edge.
All this is needed because the cut-throat razor doesn’t use disposable blades.
After you master the stropping and sharpening technique, you’ll be able to do it yourself. But maybe you’ll need to pay someone experienced to do it for you a few times first.
Shavettes has a bit of both, the safety and the cut-throat razor too. It looks almost the same as the cut-throat razor, but it’s not nearly as sharp.
On the other hand, shavette uses disposable blades, just like the safety razor. The difference here is a steeper learning curve than the one in the safety razor.
How to fade beard neckline?
Some men are not that much into having a harsh, crisp neckline. That’s where the beard neckline fade comes in handy.
Properly done neckline fading means that you can notice a gradual change in hair length from the beard to the neckline and vice-versa.
Looking from the neckline to the face, hairs should slowly increase in length and become the fullest on the cheek.
From the top-down perspective, the maximum length should be in the beard, and then gradually decrease till the neckline.
Beard neckline fade done right gives the impression that your beard grew in perfect spots.
To pull off an awesome neckline fade, you’re going to need a trimmer with multiple guards or settings.
Follow these steps for a fantastic neckline fade:
1. Set the clippers two settings lower than your beard length to create your beard neckline.
2. Once done, go one or two settings shorter again and aim for the space just above Adam’s apple.
3. Use the shorter setting to trim the bottom half. The top half should remain at the length of the original setting. This creates a natural and gradual end to your beard.
4. Get rid of all strayed hairs between the bottom of your neckline and your chest hair.
Neckline fade requires a lot of effort when it comes to maintaining, especially if you have a shorter beard.
Men with long beards have less work to do around maintaining the neckline fade because the neckline itself is less noticeable.
It’s enough just to trim the contour of the long beard without the need to continuously update the shape of the neckline.
How to fix beard neckline?
Even after following all the steps when it comes to making a good beard neckline, mistakes happen.
Knowing how to fix them helps you get one step closer towards the goal of achieving the professionally done neckline.
In beardland, there are two neckline repair methods: all-in-one method and iterative method.
If you’ve messed up your neckline, all-in-one method suggests that you just stop shaving for at least a week or two. That way you are letting your beard grow outside the neckline you wish to modify.
Men with a longer beard may now want to trim back a little the existing growth to allow the new growth to blend up with it. Although, this is optional.
After that, you should define your new neckline, while periodically trimming back your beard and letting the new hairs catch up.
Bearded men who like to do things more gradually should give the iterative method a try.
This method requires holding back from shaving for at least a day or two. After that period, you should define a new neckline below the existing one.
Wait for the new hairs to grow and evaluate if this newly-defined neckline suits you. If it doesn’t, repeat the whole process and define a new neckline.
When you’re satisfied with what you’ve done, the only thing left is to let the new hairs even out with the existing beard.
Frequently asked questions (FAQ):
How to prevent irritated skin when making a neckline?
Short answer: shave with the grain. Do the opposite, and you’ll experience the ingrown hairs.
Easier said than done if you don’t know which way is with the grain. Fortunately, a simple tactic can help you figure that out.
Run the fingers around your neck, and when you run into the most resistance, you’ve found yours against the grain.
The smoothest path is with the grain, and there is where you should shave the neckline.
Do you need a shaving cream for neckline trimming?
Yes, but only a dime size. Shaving cream is especially important if you’re using single blade razors.
Shaving cream should be mixed up with a little bit of water in the bowl. You’ll know you’ve gotten the perfect texture when the consistency becomes just like whipped cream.
Is it better to trim the neckline after the shower?
The pores are more opened after the warm shower. That means that trimming the neckline after you’ve taken a shower makes the whole process a lot easier.
Another way is to press a towel with warm water on the face for a couple of minutes to loosen up the skin.
After you trim your neckline, you should close the pores with cold water or an aftershave without alcohol to keep your skin more clean and healthier.
Have any pro-tips from how you make your clean beard necklines? Hit us up with your tips or with any questions in our comments box below!
Photos from: fxquadro / depositphotos.com, kantver, / depositphotos.com, victorvice / depositphotos.com, ArturVerkhovetskiy / depositphotos.com, Naypong / depositphotos.com,
- Where Is a Proper Beard Neckline?
- The Basic Tools
- Some Quick Tips Before You Trim
- How to Trim a Beard Neckline: Free Hand
- Step 1:
- Step 2:
- Step 3:
- How to Trim a Beard Neckline: Beard Shaping Tool
- Go Make That Neckline!
- Do you need a neckline?
- What neckline style is for you?
- How to trim beard neckline with a razor?
- 1. Safety Razors
- 2. When appropriately sharpened, the cut-throat razor will get you the closest shave.
- 3. Shavettes
- How to fade beard neckline?
- How to fix beard neckline?
- Frequently asked questions (FAQ):
- How to prevent irritated skin when making a neckline?
- Do you need a shaving cream for neckline trimming?
- Is it better to trim the neckline after the shower?