Beard Experiment 2009

This year I’ve been hearing a lot about people growing “winter beards”.  This got me thinking about growing a beard myself.  I’ve thought about it in the past, but I never followed through on it because I was pretty sure that it wouldn’t look good.  The times that I had gone a week or more between shaves had taught me that my facial hair is patchy.  I could get away with a goatee but I couldn’t count on my whiskers to cover my cheeks.

However, I couldn’t help wondering if I would be able to grow a good looking beard if I only gave the empty patches some time to fill in.  I had never had the fortitude in the past to keep on growing it out after a week or a week and half.  So, this year during my January term, I decided to try and see what it would look like.

I shaved on January 2nd in preparation for a wedding I was in on the 3rd.  Since then, I’ve only shaved my neck and some little patches at the tops of my cheeks.  Here’s the result after a little over a month of growth:


I think it looks pretty good from the front.  However, the sides leave a bit to be desired.  As you can see below, the patches didn’t really fill in all that well, even after a month. In addition, the beard doesn’t connect to my hair at all.  There is no way I could pull off any kind of sideburns.


The right side is pretty patchy but it does the best job of actually connecting to my hair.  The left side is fuller near my mouth but it’s almost as if the beard ends halfway across my cheek and it doesn’t even come close to connecting to my hair.



So, where does this leave me?  I feel like the beard is not full enough to look respectable in a professional context, so I think it probably needs to go.  What do you think?

In any case, I’ve enjoyed letting it grow out and seeing the results but I’m frustrated by my facial hair.  I think there are two ideal cases when it comes to facial hair:

  1. you basically have no facial hair and you seldom have to shave.
  2. you have lots of facial hair and it is well-distributed, allowing you lots of options when it comes to styling your facial hair.

Unfortunately, I appear to be in an annoying middle ground between these two ideals; I have enough facial hair that I have to shave regularly but I don’t have enough and it is not well enough distributed for me to grow a good beard.

3 Responses to “Beard Experiment 2009”

  1. February 7, 2009 at 10:14 pm

    Yeah, between the patchiness and the not-quite-connecting at the sideburns, I think it wouldn’t quite work in a professional context. But good work for trying.

    At least you have nice coverage of your upper lip.

  2. 2 Colin
    February 8, 2009 at 12:08 am

    Thanks. Yeah, if only I could get the hairs on my neck and upper cheek transplanted into the bare patches and sideburn areas. That would be ideal because then I’d have a full beard and I would literally never have to shave – not even a little bit. I’d need to trim my beard but no blade would ever need to scrape across my skin again.

  3. 3 Andy
    December 6, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    it’s a bit late to answer, but your goatee is great. I think if you kept that it would look awesome.

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