So, you have the venue, the tux, a manly wedding band, and even an appointment to get a snazzy new haircut. You're all set for your "Big Day," right?
You forgot one of man's most sacred rights: Manly Facial Hair. You can't walk down that aisle with your face shrubbery looking like it just rolled off the couch and hopped on to your otherwise well-groomed head! You gotta make a plan, bro. And we're here to help. Here's four thoughts to keep in mind when picking your wedding day facial hair.
Question 1: Baring it all?
Let's kill this myth once and for all - while some will claim a clean-shaven face is the only way to go, they are straight up wrong. There are only two viable reasons to exchange your vows with a naked face; it's part of your normal routine, or your spouse-to-be requested it.
If your better half has requested you rid your face of all beardage to exchange your vows, you probably want to appease them. It is a once-in-a-lifetime event, and it's probably unlikely that they have asked you to forgo face-fur for the rest of your life, right? If they met you with a full lumberjack beard and have grown to love you as a fur ball, it is seriously doubtful they want you to be fur-less from here on out. Just suck it up this once, and show your eternal love by grabbing those clippers.
Or maybe, you are the type whose facial hair style goes in cycles. You shave it clean, go a few weeks (or months) growing an epic beard, get overheated one day, and start over. It is a manly quest to be sure, and one that works. So, use your wedding day as a point of starting fresh and clean. Simple.
Other than that, clean shaven is probably not for you. If they didn't ask, and it isn't normal for you, skip the full razor routine. There is no sense in going into your wedding day looking like a bald baby baboon, if that's not your thing. Keep some hair on your face.
Question 2: Is there a theme here?
Now we get into some fun ideas. We have to ask: Are you having a themed wedding, perhaps? Maybe some sort of "Steampunk meets Star Wars" epic costume party? Then some careful planning is needed to keep you looking sharp.
If you have a particular character from a book or movie in mind, or a picture of someone in an epic costume that you are using as a guide, you may want to take that stuff to a professional to see what they can do. Any intricate braiding or shaving that is needed to make you look like your favorite hero/villain/furry copilot is not the type of thing you want to be winging yourself the night before, or worse, the day of. Consult a professional face fuzz-wrangler before you commit to any particular style, and make sure it is actually feasible. Nothing is worse than a mangled beard being mocked by your grandma, dude. Do your research.
Question 3: Time to try something new?
While we're on the topic of styling, do you normally do anything funky with your chin hair? Maybe you wax your lip-warmer into a nice Snidely Whiplash curl? Or you turn that 18-inch chin blanket into a long, tough looking braid?
If so, maybe that's the route to take for the wedding. If not, maybe we need to think this through.
It is perfectly fine to want to try something new and fancy on your biggest day to date. But you need a game plan, man. If you have an idea in mind, maybe give it a good trial run or two, a month or two beforehand. Epic beard styling is not always quick and easy, and you sure as heck don't want to try to tackle a two-hour job, for the first time, ten minutes before you head down the aisle.
Test your chosen style out beforehand. Learn how to do it, what tools and supplies you need, and how long it takes. It may come out even more awesome than you thought, but it won't without practice. So get cracking!
Question 4: Sticking with the tried and true?
Here's the section you probably need to read most thoroughly: Just do what you normally do, only better.
If you typically keep a plain and simple goatee, then that is what you should probably keep for your wedding day. Just make sure that the morning of you shave the rest nice and smooth, keep those lines straight and tight, and maybe run the trimmer over everything to keep it perfectly even.
Full-on face beard? Perfect. Just clean up your neckline, and make sure your beard is good and clean (yes, shampoo and even, gasp, conditioner, are perfectly fine. You gotta make your mug look extra sharp here. Maybe even comb that rat nest out for once).
The point is, whatever your norm is, just do that, in the sharpest and crispest way you know how. Spend extra time making sure each hair looks the best it can. Think "important job interview" level neatness. The best your "Sunday-Best" has ever looked. Even if the wedding is slap in the middle of "No-Shave-November," you gotta look groomed, man. You don't necessarily have to do something new and exotic, you just have to show you care enough about your spouse-to-be to put in the effort. They're worth it, right?
I mean, after all, they are marrying your furry rump. They've earned it.
Happy grooming, groom-to-be!