What was once seen as the ultimate symbol of cool and the quintessential sign of manliness is now antiquated and unfashionable. Where have we heard this before? Oh yeah, every trend since the wheel.
Just ask Joel Alexander, once one of the biggest purveyors of the bushy beard, who created a cult-like following on social media for his talent of growing facial hair. But recently, Alexander, 27, has chosen to shave his face completely.
“The big beard trend is over and done,” the fashion model and blogger says. Model and blogger? Wow! A true authority on manly traditions!
What was once seen as the ultimate symbol of cool and the quintessential sign of manliness is now antiquated and unfashionable.
It wasn’t until November of 2014 when Alexander discovered that having a beard wasn’t helping his career, rather, stifling it.
“My agents were telling me that big fashion houses weren’t wanting to book me because of the beard,” he says. “It’s not what they’re looking for any more and I realized then that I wasn’t going to be getting jobs with it.”
Though he has seen a dip of unfollowers on Instagram when he opted for a razor. The first time he post a photo of his bare face, he lost 8,000 followers. Must hurt.
“This time around I’m weaning them off by starting with a small beard, then some scruff,” he says. How very kind of him.
Indeed, among all high fashion campaigns and editorials, finding bearded models is far and few between.
“We live in a more streamlined world that’s post-hipster,” says Jorge Cosano, the founder of the men’s e-commerce site, Ecole. The CEO was once the leader of incubating men’s brands at L’Oreal USA and the director of global marketing for Kiehl’s.
“The hipster was all about being anti-establishment (pfft. Really?) and doing everything that was against corporate culture (another pfft). But now we’re seeing that the new millennials, these ‘yuccies,’ (Young Urban Creatives. Pfft, again) are working in non-traditional environments where they can wear what they want to in their work places and truly express themselves. Now with tech becoming so big, it’s affected how people want to look like: Clean, minimal, crisp. The beard has no place now.”
Jeff Laub, co-founder of the popular barber shop and grooming brand, Blind Barber, says that men are focusing more on their appearance.
“I think the men’s grooming world is experiencing a renaissance,” he says. “We’ve done our research there’s a huge spike and increase of interest in taking care of your skin.”
Laub says that the death of the coined 2000's term, “metrosexual,” allowed men to become more secure in their appearances without the threat of anyone questioning their masculinity.
We here at Dashing Devil Grooming have a few opinions concerning this hot topic.
First of all, if you grew out your beard just to become a part of some kind of hipster beard community/modeling/Brotherhood thing, then by all means, shave. The trend is coming to an end.
However, beards have been sported by gentlemen LONG before the fashionistas/bloggers/Instagram "celebrities" made them "trendy".
Yes, the "trend" of the beard will wane, but the TRADITION will not. And for those of us who have chosen to grow and maintain our beards for reasons other than a flash in the pan fashion statement, the eviction of the hipster element will only come as a breath of fresh air.
So, gentlemen, are you relieved to hear that the "beard trend" is over? I know we certainly are. And while our flagship products are for beard maintenance, our client base has remained those who stick with quality and tradition, not pine/lumberjack/beer scented trend chasers.
And beard on. Or not. A true gent knows that the choice is always his, not some fashion house pushing the latest fad.