Facial hair is all the rage, or so it would seem based on the scores of athletes and celebrities sporting it these days. All told, 62 percent of men have facial hair at some point during the year; however, despite the growing popularity, many are hesitant to get the ball rolling because they don't know where to start.
"Guys today are using their facial hair to express themselves, but many want and need guidance," says celebrity stylist, salon owner and Wahl Master Barber Ben Phillips. "They think trying out facial hair is going to be a game of trial and error - but it doesn't have to be."
According to Phillips, with a little effort, education and the right tools, all men are capable of being a facial hair most valuable player. These are his tips for getting off the bench:
* See what you have to work with - Rookies will want to start out with a beard. Not only can a beard be styled to fit just about any face shape, but the process of growing out your whiskers will help identify where you might have sparse growth and where your face is missing whole patches. You wouldn't want to attempt a horseshoe mustache if your whiskers couldn't form the entire shape.
* Pick a style right for your face - The key to a well-groomed look is understanding what style best suits your face. Facial shape determines what will work best. For example, if you have a round face, choose a style that can give you a more angular jaw line, like a chinstrap. A thin mustache can work well to break up a longer face. And strong, angular faces should consider curvier styles like a circle beard.
* Start with the help of a pro - Not sure what style would look best on you? Visit a professional barber, they can work with you to achieve a great style. Also, this first step at establishing a style can make maintenance easier as you can trim within the lines already set.
* Use the right tools - If you're going to put your best face forward, maintenance is key. When considering an electric trimmer, be sure to purchase one that has the power, precision, design and run-time to easily maintain your facial hair style. Wahl offers specific tools for each trimming style including the Lithium Ion + Stainless Steel Trimmer, the first tool to harness the powerful second generation of Lithium Ion battery technology.
Now that you're in the game, it's time to compete. Wahl is looking for guys who represent the best facial hair in the country, for the annual Wahl Man of the Year contest. Finalists will each win $500 and a Lithium Ion + Stainless Steel Trimmer. Then from these incredibly groomed few, one will emerge to win the coveted title of 2012 Wahl Man of the Year and a $1,000 Grand Prize. To enter, visit WahlNation.com by Oct. 28. Complete information about the contest, including expert tips and grooming advice can be found on the website.