How to Trim Your Beard with Scissors

James Harte

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Proper beard trimming and maintenance not only keeps your facial hair looking neat and tidy but also promotes healthy hair growth. In this comprehensive guide, I’ll walk you through the essential techniques, tips, and tools needed to trim your beard like a pro using scissors.

Here I use scissors instead clippers for a more precise, natural trim on a longer beard, (and less prone to making a mistake and chopping off months of growth).

Every beard is a different length, shape and style, so what works for one person might not work for everyone. These are just guidelines, it’s up to you to find what works for you, your beard and your face.

Preparing to Trim Your Beard

Before you begin trimming, gather the necessary tools and prep your beard. You’ll need a pair of sharp barber scissors, a beard brush, and a mirror. (A fine-toothed comb, is optional and can also be used instead of a brush in a pinch).

Never trim your beard while it’s wet, a dry beard will give you a more accurate sense of its true length and shape.

Brush out your beard with a boar hair brush to detangle the hairs to get them all going in the same direction. A boar brush is recommended over a comb for this step.

Trimming Techniques

When trimming your beard with scissors, always start with the longest hairs first and trim conservatively in stages. This will help you avoid cutting off too much at once. You can do this by hand, or use your comb as a guide, cutting only the hair that extends beyond the teeth.

Begin by trimming the bottom of your beard, following your jawline to create a nice shape. Cut up into the beard rather than straight across to provide some texture and avoid a “bowl cut” look. Pull out and trim any long stray hairs tucked up inside the bottom of your beard.

Next, trim your neckline about an inch above your Adam’s apple. Be careful not to cut too high, as this can create an unnatural look.

To even out your beard, pull it out to the sides and trim a little at a time, comparing both sides in the mirror to ensure they are symmetrical. Trim in the direction of hair growth to avoid creating lines or patches.

Don’t forget about your moustache! Comb the hair down over your lip and carefully snip along the lip line for a neat appearance.

Styling Tips

The key to achieving your desired beard style is to have a clear vision in mind before you start trimming. Whether you prefer a short stubble, medium length, or a longer beard, there are techniques to help you get the look you want.

Short and medium length beards might be better served by using electric clippers for the trim.

For a fuller, bushier beard, brush your beard out and trim any stray hairs that stick out. If you prefer a more tapered, angular look, trim your beard shorter on the cheeks and longer on the chin.

Pay attention to your sideburns and trim them to be even with the top of your ears for a balanced look.

In between trims, regularly brush and comb your beard to train the hairs and maintain your desired shape.


Once you’ve finished trimming, jump in the shower to remove any loose hairs. Check your beard again after a shower, as wet hair will reveal any remaining long hairs that need trimming.

Apply a few drops of beard oil or beard balm to soften the hair and moisturise the skin underneath. This will keep your beard looking and feeling healthy.

Continue to brush and comb your beard daily to maintain its shape and prevent tangles. Plan to trim your beard every 1-2 weeks to keep it looking neat and stylish.

For an extra polished look, consider visiting a barber periodically for a professional trim and shape-up. They can use clippers to clean up your cheek and neck lines with a straight edge, which can be tricky to do yourself at home.

Video Overview


Remember, the key to a well-groomed beard is regular trimming and maintenance. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different beard styles until you find the one that suits you best.

One final tip: I can’t state this enough, always trim your beard when it’s dry, as wet hair will appear longer and can result in a shorter-than-desired trim. After a shower is a good time to do a final check for any stray long hairs that need a quick snip.

I hope this guide has given you the confidence and skills to keep your beard looking its best.

James Harte

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