For the average male student, college is more than just another stage of life — it’s a transition. A transition from boy to man; a transition from peach fuzz to real, unquestionable scruff. A time when beards are grown.
But with this transition to greatness comes confusion, for the path to manhood is fraught with many difficult decisions. Even the strongest of men have cast away the trimmer in frustration and reached for the Barbasol. These men may never learn their true potential. They will never know what style suits them best.
The last thing you want is to arrive at the neighborhood barbecue as a 40-year-old with peach fuzz because you’re “trying something new.” The time is now.
Don’t beat a dead horse
First off, it is important to note that some people are not capable of any real facial hair growth. That’s life. It’s disappointing, but not the end of the world. It’s important to remember that clean-shaven is a style in itself and works better on some people.
Disappointment is common when it comes to facial hair
There came a time in my life when I realized that my facial hair was not genetically suitable for growing a chevron moustache as thick and dominant as those of Tom Selleck and Daniel Plainview. It just wasn’t going to happen. At the time it was a crushing blow, but it led me to the important lesson that…
…Emulation is almost always a mistake
As I learned with my facial hair icons (we all have them whether we admit it or not), I would look ridiculous attempting to follow their path. Beards are about shaving your own way. While it may be fun to emulate Captain Morgan or Tom Hanks in “Cast Away,” it’s important to return to a day-to-day style that speaks to your facial hair strengths. The consequences of getting lost in your icon’s beard are pat downs at the airport, weird looks picking up a younger sibling from school or even disappointment from a significant other, and no one wants that.
Have fun with it
With all of the warnings out of the way, a final lesson: Have fun with it. Here at Northeastern, we have five years to determine what to do with the select amount of follicles (or lack thereof) on our faces. This is not simply a trivial decision to be made all willy nilly, but a responsibility — to ourselves. Beards have the power to instill hope, confidence and fear. They can even inspire during the darkest of times. Determining what you want your beard to convey is only the beginning of a great adventure more vast and complex than mankind itself.
So put away the razors, get out the precision trimmer and get growing.
Grow wise. Grow strong. Grow thick.