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Perhaps you are looking for a style of facial hair that is fun and will definitely have you standing out in the crowd.
If this sounds like you, then the mutton chops just might be the perfect new beard style for you.
This classic look still holds its powerful dominance even in the fashion world, drawing attention first to your face and then what you might be wearing.
If you want to command attention regardless the room you are in, this guide on how to shave mutton chops will help you to achieve this appealing look also knows as sideburns.
Whether you are looking to make a bold statement or you are in love with the rockabilly genre of music, you will have little trouble getting that retro look with this style of beard.
One of the biggest benefits of this style is you can switch up the two styles when you want a change, and it will look completely different from the other style.
Table Of Contents
- What Are Mutton Chops?
- Benefits of Growing Mutton Chops
- Mutton Chops Beard Styles
- How to Grow Mutton Chops (Sideburns)
- How to Trim and Maintain Mutton Chops
- Do’s and Don’ts When Growing Mutton Chops
- FAQ About Mutton Chops
What Are Mutton Chops?
Mutton chops are a type of facial hair that began several centuries ago. Also called sideburns, this facial hair stretches down past your cheeks then into a mustache, but misses the chin. One thing that encourages men to grow mutton chops is that it tends to represent intellect and masculinity.
If you are interested in growing mutton chops, then be aware that there are several techniques capable of flattering various facial shapes, occasions, and styles. It is a classic beard style that also works perfectly for modern men. It will suit you if you are searching for a fun facial hair, which allows you to stand out in the crowd.
The mutton chops also showcase a classic look capable of holding powerful dominance in various areas, including the fashion world. It is also styled in a way that it can first draw attention to your face then your outfit. The good thing about it is that it has a sideburn styling, which you can leave alone or with various beard styles or mustaches.
Benefits of Growing Mutton Chops
Growing mutton chops carries with it several benefits. If you ever get the chance to grow this facial hair, then you will surely enjoy the following:
Gives Off a Masculine Look
It can make you look more masculine by connecting to your facial hair starting from the jawline to the sideburns.
Not That Hard to Maintain
Most of those who have tried growing mutton chops say that they did not have a hard time maintaining this type of facial hair. It is easy to trim, groom, and shave, making this facial hairstyle low-maintenance.
Aside from being unique and masculine, mutton chops are also known for their versatility. This means that you can also style it even further depending on what you want. Keep in mind that the only rule for sporting this style is to allow the sideburns to grow full and long.
Once you meet this requirement, you have the freedom to cut the sides either thin or thick, wear it with a mustache or not, or style it with a shaved-off goatee. There are still several more styles you can apply with mutton chops, proving how versatile it is.
What’s great about mutton chops is that it is also unique. It even lets you switch from one style to another while still getting a completely unique and different look.
Mutton Chops Beard Styles
Neat Mutton Chops
This mutton chop beard style is perfect for any man who would like to be well-dressed. It is suitable for anyone who wants to sport a modern and subtle look on the classic mutton chops. What you should do to achieve this style is to thin down both sides of your beard and keep them that way.
You should prevent them from becoming too bushy. If you prefer to have this look, then take note that it is necessary for you to practice regular grooming and maintenance. That way, you can maintain the nice look of this style.
Bushy Mutton Chops
If you want your look to be a bit more rebellious, then the bushy style of the mutton chops is ideal for you. What you should do is to keep up with the usual grooming routines you do on the upper part of your mustache as well as your chin – that is after growing your beard.
Allow your facial hair to grow for more than one month. After that, you can cut it based on the correct shape. Provide proper care and maintenance to the area to retain its classic look.
Wolverine Mutton Chops
As the name suggests, this style of mutton chops resembles that worn by Wolverine. It has a strong and masculine style, so it is ideal for anyone who truly wants to prove to the world their masculinity.
To obtain this look, you should style the hair along the cheeks in a way that it looks somewhat full. You should then shorten it gradually upon reaching the chin and mustache. It will result in a width that tends to hit at your cheek’s center and eliminated from beneath the mouth.
Both sides of the sideburns should also go together at your chin’s bottom part. Your goal is to bring out just the right amount of pointed edge.
Mutton Chops With a Quiff
You may also want to sport mutton chops with a quiff, which is known to showcase a truly unique combination. What is great about this style is that it is trendy plus easy to do and replicate. It is also known for having the freshest look out of the different styles of mutton shots.
If you want to have this style, then note that it is characterized by a neat and short line displayed across your jaw. This specific style is, therefore, helpful in ensuring that your mustache stays light while removing hair from your chin. You can balance this look by integrating the quiff hairstyle.
Stubble Mutton Chops
If you are looking for a more refined look, then you should consider going for the stubble mutton chops. It is great if you want your facial hair to appear neater. Sporting this style is possible by maintaining a short facial hair length against your skin. Ensure that the edges are neat and clean, too. You should be able to maintain its scruff-free and neat look by trimming and buzzing the hair every now and then.
Clean Mutton Chops
You may also want to go for the clean mutton chops, which works well for all occasions. It combines sideburns and the regular mutton chops. One thing that makes this style distinctive is the neat and full length, which eliminates the mustache entirely.
The fact that its length can’t be considered as either short or long makes it suitable for semi-formal and smart casual events. Prevent the beard from becoming bushy by giving consistent care to the lines.
Elvis Presley Mutton Chops Sideburns
You may also want to replicate the style sported by the legend Elvis Presley. This style can be distinguished with its sharp edges and oversized sideburns, making it as unique as possible.
It is also advisable to let the hair grow out as widely as possible – that is the key to effectively replicating the Elvis Presley mutton chops sideburns. Another tip is to shave diagonally. The shorted end of this hair should also be next to the earlobe while the longest one needs to reach the middle of your cheek.
Mutton Chops With Long Hair
If you prefer a style that is a bit longer than what is usual, then this is the one for you. Aside from being a bit longer, it is also characterized by a mustache that tends to whisk out to your jawline.
As much as possible, maintain a clean line across your cheeks. It is also advisable to give this style of facial hair proper care by applying shampoo and oil. These products can help in restoring the hair’s luster.
Strap Mutton Chops
If you are someone who wants a sleek style for your facial hair and does not want a full mustache just yet, then the strap mutton chops are perfect for you.
For you to get this look, you need to spend around one month to let your facial hair grow. Make sure to shave the specific parts below and above your cheeks and mouth, though. It is a classic style inspired by the 70s but with a more modern approach.
John Lennon Mutton Chops
You can also go for the somewhat bold mutton chops sported by John Lennon. It resembles the clean style but wider. It is also thicker in density. Another thing that differentiates this style from the rest is the scruffier sideburn. You can sport this look by committing not to groom the strays and edges too perfectly. The goal here is to make the style more carefree and laidback.
How to Grow Mutton Chops (Sideburns)
Step 1 – Choosing your style
The mutton chops have become so popular in recent years that there are actually two distinct styles you can choose from.
These two styles are called the regular and the friendly mutton chops. The regular mutton chops will be shaped independently from the mustache or the beard.
The friendly mutton chops will be connected to both ends of the mustache, allowing it to give the illusion of a long continuous line of facial hair that extends from the sideburns to the chin and back around to the other side.
The history of the friendly mutton chops dates all the way back to the Civil War, where general Ambrose Burnside wore the sideburns in which eventually were named after him.
Also, Wolverine is famous for his mutton chops in the X-men movies.
Step 2 – Let a full beard grow
The first step in growing hair muttons is to allow your beard to have full growth. Remember that the key to the success of this style is decent hair density. In such a case, your best solution in shaping mutton chops the right way is to have a full and complete beard then work backward. It would be best to let it grow for at least a month. That would be enough time to form a full beard that you can transform into impressive mutton chops successfully.
The ideal time is to wait about a week after your last shave, the key to getting the best chops is thicker and full hair growth.
One thing to consider is that if you decided to go with the friendly mutton chops, you must allow your mustache and the top portion of the beard to grow out to the same length.
One simple suggestion is to just let all your facial hair grow at the same time, this way you do accidentally trim off a part of the mutton chops while shaving your beard.
Step 3 – Ensure that the full beard aims to get a flush on every side
This step is necessary for ensuring that you get the most distinguishable quality of the mutton chops, which is the connection between the sideburns and mustache. If you are one of those who have thin or spotty beards, therefore, then you may have to spend more time letting your facial hair grow on all sides. After attaining a flush growth on every side, forming great chops should come next.
Step 4 – Create the mutton chops
Once you have achieved enough growth for your facial hair, you can implement the most unique trait of the hairstyle. This distinguishable character is the clean-shaven neck and chin. Note that regardless of the style or length of your mutton chops, it is necessary for your chin to have a completely shaven look. In other words, you need to clean up and shave your chin to prepare for the set of chops that will come anytime soon after you get a full and flush facial hair.
Once you have done the three important steps and the mutton chops were already formed, the next thing you have to do is to trim the hair and maintain it. You will learn the steps in trimming and maintaining your mutton chops in the next section.
Shaving your beard is best done with a regular razor blade and beard liner, this will give you more precision and control than with using an electric razor.
Choose the appropriate instructions below according to what style chops you are going to ultimately grow.
Shaving Your Regular Mutton Chops:
1. First, you need to decide on how long you want the mutton chops to grow.
2. Now that you have determined the length, carefully shave a clean straight line at the bottom of each sideburn.
3. Now starting towards the top of your ear, start shaving away the excess hair. Keep shaving to create the eventual shape you want.
4. Make certain that you leave the bottom of your new mutton chops wider, sort of like the bell bottom jeans shape.
Shaving Your Friendly Mutton Chops:
1. Between the two corners of your lips, begin to carefully shave the chin area.
2. Now that you have the chin area shaved, slowly shape the areas below and above that line where the mustache will meet the sideburn. This is going to create the ultimate shape of the new look.
3. Now carefully start to trim those sideburns and your mustache so that all the facial hair is the same length.
If you need help with styling and lining sideburns check out our beard shaping tool:
Now that you have the sculpting process complete, you have laid the groundwork for maintaining your mutton chops for as long as you want to keep this style.
Simply allow your chops to grow out as thick as you want, trimming the hair with an electric trimmer for stubble beard, but cleaning the rest of the face with a regular razor to maintain those tight fine lines.
How to Trim and Maintain Mutton Chops
Once you have your mutton chops, you have to make an effort to trim and maintain this hairstyle. Remember that trimming plays a major role in ensuring that your formed mutton chops look as great as how you want it to be. Here are the simple steps involved in trimming it:
Step 1 – Clean your neck and chin
Add some finesse into any facial hair that is left.
Step 2 – Make sure to maintain the connection between sideburns and mustache
You should then shave the area along with your mouth and chin with the aim to create a triangular shape there.
Step 3 – Use a razor for shaving
Make sure that it is good enough that it can produce precise angles and slants. When using the razor, you need to take extreme caution to ensure that your mustache’s hairy integrity will be maintained. Take extra care when dealing with the areas surrounding your sideburns, too.
After forming and trimming the chops, you will find it easier to maintain this facial hairstyle. However, the whole maintenance will require you to have focus and great attention to detail. Part of the maintenance is to do the frequent trimming. It would be best to do it every day as it is crucial to maintain a clean neck and chin to get the look you want for the remaining parts of your face.
Another vital part of maintenance is the use of shaving cream known for its amazing quality. Make sure to apply shampoo on your mutton chops frequently, too. Your goal should be to maintain a neat look, which you can further emphasize with nicely formed and styled mutton chops.
Do’s and Don’ts When Growing Mutton Chops
- Give your facial hair enough time to grow. This tip is applicable regardless of the mutton chops style you decided to sport. Give it at least a month to achieve full and complete growth. Hair growth should also be thick enough.
- Let your facial hair grow simultaneously. By letting it grow at exactly the same time, you can lower the risk of trimming off one part of your mutton chops accidentally, which might happen when you shave your beard.
- Use a regular razor and beard liner when shaving the beard. Both of these shaving items can give you more control. A regular razor is also more precise compared to an electric one.
- Do not shave without considering the shape of your face first. Remember that you can only apply the perfect shaving option for you based on your actual facial shape.
- Do not trim nor shave the facial hair unless it gets its full growth. This will always be the most crucial tip when planning to grow mutton chops successfully.
- Do not forget to use some products designed for the beard. For instance, you may want to apply a bit of cream on the area before you begin shaving. A beard comb should also be used to prevent the beard from curling up. If you have some essential oil, then use it to massage the hair, too. A good essential oil works in preventing facial hair breakage.
FAQ About Mutton Chops
Why are mutton chops called that way?
Mutton chops are called that way because of those who were not able to grow sideburns effectively in the past. That caused them to use sheep meat pieces, otherwise known as mutton, to put on their faces and get the look they want. This is where the mutton chops style of facial hair was taken because it resembles such a look.
Are mutton chops in style?
Yes. While this type of facial hair started a few centuries ago, you can still see it being in use nowadays. Also called sideburns, the mutton chops became a trend all throughout the mid-19th century. Many also use it nowadays because it tends to symbolize intellect and masculinity.
What mutton chops say about you?
Mutton chops are facial hairstyles that can say a lot of things about you. It can give off an intellectual and masculine vibe. Mutton chops are also ideal for those who have creative jobs as such also symbolizes creativity. This style also represents those who want to show their somewhat rebellious side. Furthermore, it can also say a lot about how independent you are.
What face shape mutton chops fit best?
Mutton chops are perfect for those men who have oval-shaped or round-shaped faces. It also works for those who have thinner or longer face, but they need to make sure that the mutton chops are bushier than usual. If you have a pointy chin, then this facial hair may not be the most suitable style for you.
Mutton chops are not that hard to grow if you are just aware of the different versions of it as well as the basic steps in growing, trimming, and maintaining it. Just remember that the main rule is to let your chops grow thick. Do not forget to trim it regularly to maintain its unique look.
Photos from: Tom Grundy © 123RF.com, Davide Fiorenzo De Conti © 123RF.com and Mandy Godbehear © 123RF.com, info.zonecreative.it / depositphotos.com and digoarpi / depositphotos.com.