When it comes to being creative with your beard, one of the most popular trends at the moment is donning the fierce look of the Vikings: the braided beard.
As long as your beard is a minimum of two inches long, you too can follow the strong example of the Vikings with braids that historically symbolize strength and masculinity.
You may be wondering, what is a braided beard? Well, it looks like what it sounds like – the same interlaced pattern you might see with the hair on a person’s head, or with other miscellaneous string-like materials.
Viking braids also often contained beard beads or beard rings that would section off different areas of the beard as dependent on length.
The terms ‘braided beard’ and ‘Viking beard’ may be used interchangeably, as just Googling Viking beards will show a wide array of braided beards of varying lengths – though the examples you’ll see will likely be ones of longer length.
Maybe you are feeling ready to go down the road of the Viking aesthetic, in which case a braided beard – if you are lucky enough to be the kind of guy that can grow the requisite facial hair – is a must.
Donning the Viking braided beard offers the opportunity for additional accessories and creativity as well.
Beads or rings are popular and very common with braided beards, and more on that will be discussed in sections below.
Adopting the facial hair of a fierce warrior can be both fun and rewarding, and while your interest is peaked, you can read more about what it means to have a Viking facial hair, how to grow and weave your own, as well as some historical background of the particular beard style below.
What does it mean to be a woven warrior with a Viking beard? First, it communicates the dedication of your personhood.
It takes dedication to grow a full, healthy beard that is strong enough to be braided and to trail down your chin and chest.
Historically, the Vikings might be some of the oldest famous bearded men that embraced their ferocity over both land and sea.
In addition, despite whatever rough image, you may have in mind regarding their tidiness as warriors of strength, blood, and muscle – the Vikings were surprisingly hygienic.
So, in case you are looking to be as authentic as possible with your braided Viking facial hair, you’ll definitely want to keep your beard neat and tidy. If you want to make the Vikings proud, that is.
Depending on your own personal preference, the actual length of your beard – if you are determined to go the Viking route – can vary and still fit the aesthetic.
Just as the popularity of different beard styles nowadays changes with time, so it did with the Vikings.
However, we are all about the beards, so that facial hair choice of the warriors will be what we focus on here.
If you have already grown or maintained a long beard before, you’ll likely have already been compared to a Viking at some point or another with a chuckle or two.
One of the first characteristics that comes to mind when you think of the warriors, after all, is their famously long beard styles.
The basic tips for keeping your braided beard healthy and strong include:
Trimming lightly around the chin but heavily around the cheeks.
Avoid trimming your beard in hard lines. Allow the hair to grow naturally past your chin or jaw, and then trim it back as you see fit, per your preference.
Trimming may seem counter-intuitive for a beard you’re trying to grow out long enough to braid, but as you may or may not already be aware, trimming is actually very important no matter the desired length.
Long beards especially may be in most need of the occasional trimming, just to keep things neat and tidy.
Trimming helps keep your beard non-scraggly. For the best results, trim while dry, as the length of your beard is different when wet and you don’t want it to end up looking odd once it dries.
Some people prefer trimming it wet, as it can often be easier that way, but ensure that you know what you’re doing if you decide to go that route.
Investing in a quality grooming kit is an excellent way to keep your beard in check with all the basic tools you need to do so.
If you’ve watched the television series Vikings, you’ve surely witnessed the bearded greatness of men such as Jarl Borg and Leif.
Jarl Borg is a fictional character, of course, but as it is a show broadcasted on The History Channel, the historical accuracy regarding the shape and style of men’s beards is respected.
The Viking warrior and poet, Egil Skallagrimsson, is another famous example of a bearded Viking.
This warrior skims the border between the fact and the legend – though he is indeed legendary, and that’s all that counts.
He grew even more ferocious as a grown man, and unlike his seven-year-old self, had the facial hair by then to match his intimidating stature.
Braiding a beard may sound difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. Why should the hair on top of one’s head get all the braiding action?
The approximate minimum length for a beard before one should attempt the braiding process is about two inches. From there, you can decide how long or short you want it to be.
The process for the typical braided beard is as follows:
Separate the section of your beard that you want to braid into three equal-sized sections with a beard comb.
With the three sections of hair vertically parallel to one another, lift the section on the far left and place it over the middle section, settling it into the middle position.
Lift the section of hair on the far right and place it over the middle section, leaving that section newly in the middle position.
Repeat the process of alternating left and right until the braided pattern has reached the desired length.
Ensure that you are not braiding too tightly, as a braid that is too tight may damage or tangle your beard.
Once you are ready to finish the braid, pinch the very bottom of it with your ring finger and a thumb. Then, secure the braid by applying an adequate amount of facial hair wax at the bottom.
As the braided beards of the Vikings have been making a comeback over recent years, so have the beads to accompany them.
Viking facial hair beads or beard rings double work by letting you observe the growth of the length of your beard.
The beads can vary in style and size – the latter of which may be important to consider in finding beard beads that match the thickness of your particular braid.
Beads are very commonly used among those that rock Viking facial hair, so if you’re ready to take the plunge to try the braided beard, you may enjoy going the extra mile to experiment with some beads as well.
If you are able to grow a beard, you’re already luckier than a lot of other guys out there.
With the power to grow a beard comes the opportunity to try out the latest beard styles, and with the striking Viking facial hair style making a comeback, now is the perfect time to see what your beard can do.
Photos from: fxquadro / depositphotos.com, nejron / depositphotos.com.