Mustache with stubble [Polls, styling guide and tips]

A very popular Beard style that I considered trimming up myself is the moustache with stubble. This style of Beard is becoming increasingly popular due to its low maintenance, unique style, and ability to grow quickly. However, there are some very important care and trimming steps that you need to adhere to in order to make your moustache with stubble look awesome. In this article, we are going to go over everything you need to know about trimming up your moustache with stubble to keep it looking sharp and fresh.

A moustache with stubble is perfect for busy professionals and people looking for low maintenance styles. It can be easily adapted by changing the length of the stubble and can be made fancy by using moustache wax to hold up the moustache.

When a moustache gets particularly long and it is paired with stubble it could be called a beardstache. This is when the moustache starts to take on attributes of a long beard like fullness and ability to be styled with waxes and balms.

Before having to commit to a beardstache growing out a moustache with stubble can give you an idea of how it would look and you may like it so much that you decide to stop at a moustache with stubble. And that is completely up to you – and I think they look spectacular.

Why a moustache with stubble?

There are plenty of individual reasons for why someone may want to grow a moustache with stubble. When I was thinking about trimming up my long beard into a moustache with stubble it was really the convenience which we would need to that consideration. Looking after stubble can, in some respects, be much easier than a long beard. Although, we have to make sure that stubble is trimmed up regularly otherwise it can quickly look shabby.

Also, besides the convenience factor, a moustache with stubble is a distinctive look which can easily make any face look instantly more trendy.

I asked 3000 beard growers on my YouTube channel what they thought about a moustache with stubble and this is what they said:

Mustache with stubble - YouTube poll

Easy maintenance of a moustache with stubble combined with its style and unique look that it can impart on the wearer makes this a very attractive style.

Mustache with stubble inspiration

Even though a moustache with stubble seems like a pretty simple style there are plenty of style variations which you can use to call it your own.

Here is a gallery with a number of different styles of a moustache with stubble. Use this gallery as a way to quickly identify what you like, what you don’t like, and compare their growth pattern with your own to see if you would be able to grow a beard like theirs.

One thing that you’ll notice about all of these different styles is that you’ve really got these aspects to play around with:

  • stubble length – you can use various trimmers and guards to produce a whole variety of different stubble lengths. If you want to make your moustache stand out – trim it shorter.
  • moustache length – growing out your moustache to a length that balances nicely with the stubble can take some time. However, if you want a quick look change you can simply grow out your beard for a month and then trim back the Beard area to stubble. Growing a long moustache will be the longest part of getting to this style.
  • moustache style – there are a ton of different moustache styles that you can try. You can try short and boxed, you can go all the way to the other end of the spectrum and have a big fancy moustache. No matter what you choose just make sure that you love it.
  • lines – you can also play about with the cheek and necklines in order to add a unique style to your moustache with stubble. You can make them harsh or you can fade them and you can also change their position on your face.
  • fade into hair and moustache – how you connect your stubble to your moustache and your sideburns is also a variable that you can play with. Typically, you want to do a hard border between your moustache and stubble but you can choose to fade into your hair through varying the lengths at your sideburns.

It may take you a while to play about with these variables until you land on a style and combination of variables that you like.

The great thing about this style is that it can grow back relatively quickly so if you do want to trim your cheeks and chin down a lot you only have to wait a couple of weeks to get back what you trimmed off.

Who is a mustache with stubble for?

A moustache with stubble is perfect for busy professionals, people looking for a low maintenance style, and also people that have to work with low hair coverage on their cheeks or other parts of their face.

Busy professionals

Perhaps your job requires that you are up and out of the house quickly every morning. A stubble beard with a moustache allows you to go easy on the trimming and daily routine.

You see, not a lot of people can tell the difference between two, three, four day stubble. This gives you a window of error which allows you to skip daily maintenance. I would, however, encourage you to always use a good quality beard oil on your moustache in the morning to keep it looking shiny and perfectly nourished.

People looking for low maintence

A moustache with stubble is perfect for you did people who are looking for a unique style but with low maintenance.

You can easily allow a stubble beard to grow over a couple of days for anyone to notice that it is getting longer. This means, that for daily maintenance purposes you only really have to focus on your mustache.

A daily routine for the moustache area will be talked about in more detail, below, but I would recommend using a good quality beard oil on your moustache as well as a beard balm or a beard wax to keep the moustache in a relatively stable position and style throughout the day.

The stubble part of the style can be trimmed up every few days with a good quality set of trimmers with a hard guard to ensure that all of your face gets to the same length and looks as clean as possible.

People with low hair coverage on their cheeks

A moustache with stubble is fantastic for people who have low hair coverage on their cheeks or chin and want to rock a unique style.

Obviously, you want to make sure that your moustache area of your beard is able to grow thick and full.

I’ve always said on my YouTube channel, and in this blog, that you should work with the sort of hair coverage that you are able to muster. There is no point trying to grow someone else’s beard because they will have a completely different growth pattern to you.

If you are struggling to grow hair on your cheeks, chin, or jaw rocking a moustache with stubble will almost certainly be the best thing for you to grow if you want to stand out and still retain some ability to change your style often.

How do you shape a mustache with stubble?

Deciding that you want to grow a moustache with stubble is the first step. The hardest part, and the part with the steepest learning curve, is learning how to shape up your moustache with stubble so that you can do it at home.

There are many benefits of learning to shape your moustache with stubble at home:

  • it’s cheaper – I tend to save all of my professional trim ups for special occasions because learning to do it myself I have saved a lot of money.
  • It’s faster – I like the fact that it only takes me about half an hour every fortnight to trim up my beard and moustache. I can’t even walk to my local barber and back in that amount of time.
  • Learn new skills – I really love learning new things. Learning to cut up my moustache and beard allows me to build new skills that I can share with other people on this blog and my YouTube channel.

Here are all of the steps that you should go through if you want to shape and maintain your moustache with stubble.

Decide on the length of your stubble

The first step of growing a moustache with stubble is to decide at what length you want your stubble to be held.

Best stubble length

The benefits of short stubble are that it grows quickly and it provides maximum contrast between your moustache and stubble. Unfortunately, because it is shorter it does have to be trimmed up more regularly to keep it looking even and well kept.

Longer stubble takes a little bit longer to grow but you don’t have to trim it up as often to keep it looking sharp. The error bars for length are a little bit longer which means that if you miss a day or two of trimming not many people will notice.

With all lengths of stubble you need to keep your cheek line and neckline well lined up in order to provide the sharp and defined look that goes well with a moustache with stubble.

Below, in the table I have calculated (based on a daily growth rate of 0.38 mm) the guard number that would get you the length you desire.

You will notice that the guard number covers a range of different lengths and if you want a more precise cut, you can select a tremor that has greater variations in between their guards.

Beard age vs guard length

On day one of growth – this is known as the 5 o’clock shadow. That is, if you are to be cleanly shaven in the morning you would grow 0.38 mm of beard hair at the end of the day. This gives a slight shadow and shade to the skin which is where this saying comes from.

Here are the links that correspond with a certain number of days growth.

DaysLength (mm)Length (inch)Guard number
2710.260.4053 +

For most people, a 0.5 to 1 guard would give them the desired stubble effect. This is the equivalent of a couple weeks worth of growth which can mean up to 5 mm in length. If you want to know more about the 5 mm beard check out my other article – the 5 mm beard [everything that you need to know] – click here to be taken to article.

5mm beard

Trim up

Once you have decided on the perfect length of your stubble it’s time to trim up your beard. This is under the assumption that you have waited long enough for the stubble to be able to be cut across the entirety of your face.

Some areas of your face will grow slower than others and, therefore, you should wait until all of the hairs on your face have reached at least the trim length.

You can check to see if all of the hairs are being trimmed by listening to the tremors as you past them over your face. You should be hearing the clippers clipping your hair on every part of your face. If you do not hear it on certain parts go back over your beard later on when it has grown a bit longer.

Growing the perfect stubble relies on you looking after your skin and also following these basic principles:

How do I get perfect stubble?

Here are the simple principles for keeping your stubble perfect.

  • Grow out beard – you need to grow out your beard beyond the length at which you wish to cut it. This gives you the even length for perfect stubble across the entirety of your face.
  • Use trimmers slowly – past the trimmers slowly over all of your face. In the past, when I was using trimmers to fast I found that the hairs were not being cut as reproducibly as I wanted. Slow steady passes make the world of difference.
  • Pass the trimmers different directions – every person has different directions of hair growth on different parts of their face. For example, my cheeks and chin grows down whilst my sideburns tend to grow sideways. Passing the trimmers over my face in many different directions improved the cut tremendously.
  • Allow the skin to relax – after you have trimmed up your skin in many different directions you may find that the skin under the stubble is a little bit red and inflamed. This is typically if you have pushed too hard on the trimmers as you have been patting them over your face. Before applying any oils, balms, or other products make sure that you allow the redness to subside.
  • Use an oil – beard oil is as much for the skin as it is for the hairs on your face. Make sure that you use an oil with a high concentration of jojoba oil which is readily absorbed by the skin and not so much by the hair.

Stick to these basic principles and your stubble will look great most of the time – if not perfect!

Trim up your mustache

The next most important thing with a moustache with stubble style is trimming up your moustache.

Trimming up your moustache should be done with a good set of sharp scissors that have been specifically designed for cutting hair.

Scissors come in a whole range of styles and shapes and it is important that you get good quality pair of barber scissors for maintaining your moustache.

Using a comb, brush the moustache downwards and trim up any hairs which escape the line that you wish to create on the bottom of your moustache.

The sides of your moustache can be grown a little bit longer which helps cover up the connection from the top lip to the cheek but that is completely up to you. You can also keep it the same length all over.

Depending on the length of your moustache you may want to use a good quality set of trimmers to even out the length across the moustache. However, I would recommend that you grow out the moustache to a long length before using any sort of trimmer on your moustache.

The top line of your moustache should only be touch with scissors if you have a significant number of hairs that are pointing upwards and you cannot get them to lie down with wax or any other balm. Typically, I trim about one or two hairs from either side of my moustache every month that just won’t lay flat no matter how much wax or balm I put on them.

A moustache looks thick and full once the top line of hairs completely cover the entire upper lip. This can take a few months as the hair has to get at least 2 inches in long to completely cover the hairs underneath.

Also, it is important that you trim up your moustache so that it is not as annoying on your lips. When I was growing out my moustache I found that the hairs would poke into my lips which would irritate me. Trim up your moustache as much as you need to ensure that it does not get in the way of you enjoying the day.

Line up

Now that you have dealt with the stubble, the moustache, and the moustache line I recommend that you turn your attention to your beard neckline and the stubble cheek line in order to achieve a nice, even and defined style.

Stubble beard neckline

The stubble beard neckline is important to get right because it is very visible. The shorter the beard hair the more visible the neckline is and the more symmetrical and well defined it needs to be.

As with all beard styling issues – you can choose what is best for you. If you want a messy neckline that is completely up to you. However, the easiest way to find the standard neckline is to pull your chin towards your neck and push your finger up into the crease where your head meets your neck is where your beard neckline should be trimmed. It should sweep up from your Adam’s apple symmetrically to both sides of your face sweeping down from just behind the ears to the centre point above your Adam’s apple.

Stubble beard cheekline

The cheek line is another really important part of your moustache with stubble beard style. Essentially, you have two options for the beard cheek line and where you cut it:

  • You can use a low sweeping curve to connect the front edge of your sideburn to the top edge of your moustache. This is perfect for people who have good cheek density.
  • The other option, is to do a low flat cheek line which is best suited for people who are struggling to fill out the cheek areas of their beard.

Exactly where you trim up each cheek line is different for each person and this image below is where I trim my cheek line. You will notice that I have to make a decision about exactly where the cheek line sits based on the density of hairs.

These two options need to be executed by shaving close to the skin with a single blade safety razor so that you can define the line as accurately and as cleanly as possible.

Fade into sideburns

Lastly, you will need to decide how your stubble connects to your sideburns. If you have a lot of hair on your head I recommend using a number of graduated guides in order to achieve a smooth transition from stubble to hair. If, like most bearded men, you have a baldhead you could do the opposite and fade from your stubble into skin using the graduated guards on your trimmer.

Doing all of the above will keep your moustache with stubble looking awesome. You need to decide how often you will perform each of these trimming tasks as your growth rate will be different to other people.

For example, I trim up my cheek line nearly every other day because it gets very uneven quickly whilst my neckline is done only once a week. And every fortnight I do a big trim up of my beard to keep it looking even. You may want to consider trimming up your moustache every fortnight so that you do not over trim it and cause it to become shorter unintentionally.

Once you have trimmed up your moustache with stubble beard and you’ve got it looking as good as you can, you should consider the best ways for caring for your moustache with stubble.

How to care for a mustache with stubble

This beard style is quite different to look after because you are dealing with two very different lengths of facial hair.

The stubble portion of your face will need to focus on looking after the skin underneath the stubble whilst the moustache area will need to be conditioned for longer hair. This means that you are likely going to have products which span skin and beard hair.

Skin care

Look after the skin underneath your stubble beard. After about two months of growth you will still be able to see some areas of your skin under the beard.

Looking after the skin can include using:

  • a cleanser – using a cleanser removes the dirt and grime from your face and will prevent you from developing breakouts.
  • Exfoliate – pick a gentle scrub to put into your routine to remove any dead skin cells that accumulated at the roots of your short beard.
  • Moisturise – choose a beard boil or a skin moisturiser which is readily absorbed into the skin. A good moisturiser will contain vitamins and nutrients to add a shine to your skin and will also create a barrier to protect you from what the world has for you that day.

Looking at your skin whilst you still have a 1 inch beard will also mean that you are less likely to suffer from beard problems such as beard dandruff and irritation.

Beard oil

Beard oil is a staple for the majority of bearded men. In this case, you will be only using it on your moustache.

For the hairs on your face you should consider getting a beard oil that has a lot of jojoba oil in it. The jojoba oil is readily absorbed by the skin – rather than the hair – which means that your short hair and skin is looked after. Make sure that the beard oil has some essential oils in it too – not just for smell but also for the small amount of therapeutic properties which can be imparted by essential oils.

On the other hand, for the moustache area of your beard you should consider getting a beard oil that contains a majority of Argan oil and sweet almond oil. These are readily absorbed by the beard hair and because the moustache is very thick and density is unlikely to penetrate all the way to the skin.

If you’re not sure about what beard oil to buy in this early stage I recommend trialling a range of different manufacturers and suppliers so that you can choose the best one for you.

Mustache wax

A good quality moustache wax is a must if you want to style your moustache in a fancy way. By that I mean that you want to wax the ends of your moustache so that they defy gravity and point upwards or curl upwards.

A good quality moustache wax and/or a beard balm will not only provide some form of hold but they also generally contain butters such as shea butter or cocoa butter which will nourish your hair and keep it hydrated throughout the day.

Beard brush

A good quality beard brush with natural bristles will mean that you are able to spread the beard oil evenly throughout your stubble and moustache whilst also brushing it into shape. Your beard is probably too short to control with heat and so you will be relying on using beard oils and softeners in combination with your beard brush to keep it in control.


In this article, we have been through everything you need to know about the moustache with stubble beard style. It is a popular style because of its relatively low maintenance and the fact that you can grow the stubble and moustache relatively quickly.

This style relies on the difference in length between the moustache and the surrounding stubble to really pop. By learning how to trim up the stubble reproducibly and by getting comfortable using Barber’s scissors for trimming up the moustache you will keep the cost and time of maintaining this style low.

Because the style has both long and short hairs you will have to have a range of products that span both skin focused beard products such as moisturiser and beard oils with jojoba oil as well as hair focused products such as beard balm and wax for styling and nourishing the longer moustache hairs.

No matter what your motivation there is no doubt that the moustache with stubble is a fantastic style which you can easily create and make your own due to its wide variety of potential variations.

The Author

Andy Stapleton

Andy is a writer and YouTuber with a PhD in science. He has written and/or produced videos for Science Alert, COSMOS magazine, and Australia's Science Channel among others. He is an avid beard grower and after many years of growing and trialling different beard styles, he started this blog to share the tips, tricks, and science that he has learned along the way!