The one inch beard: A complete guide!

The one inch beard is a fantastic length which allows you to have a full beard but without the maintenance and hassle of having a much longer beard. For most people a 1 inch beard is completely achievable. It is normally about two months of growing to get to about 1 inch of good growth. This means that the stronger growing parts of your beard will be slightly longer but the slower and weaker parts will have had enough time to get to about 1 inch of length. Then you can even it all up with a good trim.

The one inch beard is achievable for most beard growers as it requires a relatively short amount of time and can give you the full beard look whilst keeping the maintenance and hassle down to a minimum.

In this article, we are going to go over everything you need to know about the 1 inch beard. We are going to explore why people may want to grow a 1 inch beard. The best ways for maintaining it and the sorts of beard styles that are available and open to you with just 1 inch of length.

How long is a 1 inch beard?

A 1 inch beard is exactly 25.4 mm in length. And for most men they will be able to achieve this in between 8 to 10 weeks. Here is what my beard looked like when it was at the 10 week mark and approximately 1 inch in length.

You will notice that the beard still hugs the shape of the face and the chin. It is long enough to cover the face completely and evenly but without being able to define the jawline or other aspects of the face.

At this length, it is almost certain that you will have two trim up the moustache area so that the hairs do not end up in your mouth or tickle your lips.

The other sort of agreement that happens at this length is to clean up the neckline, shake up the top cheek line, and fade into other parts of your face or your hair. Because I have decided to shave my head, I need to trim up the side burn area of the beard and faded into my hairline. You can also choose to have a hard stop and the style choice is completely up to you and your preferences.

We will talk about how to trim up a 1 inch beard and maintain it in later sections.

Should a beard be all one length?

A beard doesn’t have to be all one length but when it is shorter it is easier to maintain and looks more cohesive if your beard is very similar in length all over. For a 1 inch beard one of the easiest ways to stall it at that length and still maintain the way it looks is to use a good quality beard trimmer set at 1 inch and pass it completely over your face.

I have multiple lengths in my beard with the chin area being much longer and the majority of the length at the front portion of the chin and jawline. If your beard is much shorter you can choose to fade into different aspects of your beard so that you can still create a definitive and defined style.

I have a full article on all of the different types of beard styles including very short beards. Check out my other article – beard styles [a comprehensive list of foundational beard styles] – click here to be taken to the full article…

Here are all of the different beard styles that would look awesome if you have a 1 inch beard.

1 inch beard styles

At a 1 inch length your beard is perfectly set up to handle some of the best short beard styles currently around. You see, before about 1 inch of length beards really are classed as stubble and are very hard to control or shape into a particular style. At 1 inch you reach a milestone which means that your beard can start to take on the style that you dreamt of when you first started growing your beard.

Here are some of the best shorter beard styles which you can use as inspiration to guide your own trimming journey. Of course, you don’t have to stop the length at 1 inch beard length but a lot of people use this milestone to halt their beard growing just for a couple of months to enjoy having a full length beard.

These are some of the best styles to emulate:

The even medium beard

The even medium length beard is exactly what it sounds like! It is a beard that is about 3 inches long – all over. The mustache can also be trimmed a little shorter to avoid the hair hitting the top of the lip (which can be a little annoying). Trimming with a medium length on a trusted trimmer will achieve this look.

Trimming this beard will require you to go over the hair in a load of different directions to make sure you have trimmed all of the hairs that lie in different directions. This beard suits nearly every face shape but will look particularly good on hart shaped faces!

Faded sides medium beard

If you have a hairstyle that fades at the bottom. Or, if you are like me and have a shaved head it would be a good idea to see if blending that fade into your beard will help define your medium beard. This beard is characterized by a heavier chin and mustache length than the sides.

This beard will have to be trimmed up regularly – about every two to three weeks to keep it looking sharp. You can decide to keep the cheeks messy or you can also define the cheek line a little bit more, as your next example.

Sharp lines medium beard

As you beard gets a little bit longer there is no reason that it cannot still be really well maintained. Defining the lines of your beard – like the cheeks and the neckline – is one of the best way to create a more formal look from your medium length beard. Great for formal or any other special occasion that you may be attending.

If you match this beard with a slightly dressed up look you are in the perfect position for a killer look. The great thing about this beard is that you are able to trim up the lines yourself with a good quality single blade razor. If you are unsure of where the lines are best drfined for your beard, I’d recommend getting a barber to do it with a cut-throat razor and then maintaining it yourself at home. Pass your trimmer over the rest and you’ll be sorted!

Short mustache medium beards

If you are struggling to grow a mustache you can trim it right down and leave the chin and sides a little bit longer. If you are struggling with your mustache check out my mother full article and other mustache-less beard options for a weaker growth on the top lip.

This beard will need you to have a trimmer with a multiple of length guards. The mustache area can be really tough to get into with a trimmer so you’ll have to select one with good manoeuvrability. But a really trendy looking beard for those who want a more manageable mustache.

I hope that you are able to use these styles to inspire your own beard growing journey.

How to trim a one inch beard

Trimming a 1 inch beard is surprisingly easy as long as you have the right tools. Having the right tools means that you will be able to cut your beard hairs and get the defined lines which will make your beard pop and stand out reproducibly and easily.

The tools

If you after my full run down on the best tools for trimming and maintaining your beard check out my other page – recommended beard tools – click here to be taken to that page…

It is relatively inexpensive to purchase the right tools. As long as you buy tools that are suited to exactly the type of style and beard that you have you will be sure not to have buyers remorse and it will keep your beard looking better for longer.


Every beard grower passed about 1 inch of length should invest in a good quality set of trimmers.

I have created some awesome resources for the type of trimmer that you should buy for different situations:

If none of those articles are exactly what you’re looking for I recommend that the best beard trimmer that you combine for beards that are 1 inch in length are Whal Professional clippers

Wahl Clippers

What I love about these clippers: I use these clippers every week or fortnight when I do a major trim of my beard. The clippers are solid in construction and have never failed me. I have cleaned and oiled the cutters regularly and expect them to last for many years to come. They are heavy duty enough that I don’t flatten the hair as it goes – it just cuts right through it. 

What I don’t like about these clippers: I think these clippers are the best value that you can buy. If I had to choose what I would improve it would be the cord – it is heavy duty but can tangle easily – but don’t they all?

These clippers will allow you to put on a guard that has a 1 inch length and easily slide through even the most thick of hairs. One thing I like about these clippers is that they are plugged into the wall. I don’t like using clippers that use a rechargeable battery as they are always lacking in power for my liking.

If you want to trim up your neckline and cheek line using electric trimmers I would recommend using the Wahl T-Styler Pro. Having a T style trimming blade means that you are able to get really sharp defined lines over longer areas is also being able to trim close to the skin. Use T-blade trimmer for getting crisp cream lines and sharp edges.


Making sure that you get a good pair of scissors (click here to see some great examples on Amazon) means that you’ll be able to do all of the little tidy up trimming after you have passed the clippers through your beard hair.

I like to use my scissors to define the line and cut in some roundness to the shape of the beard. Getting a good pair of scissors means that you will be able to cut through the hairs easily and quickly. Professional scissors will allow you to put those final details in place and add millimetre precision to your style.

I messed around with a low cheap scissors in the past and nothing really compares to having a good quality pair of scissors that you can trust and that you take good care of.

Take them into a sharpening place once a year to make sure they stay in razor-sharp working order.

A single blade safety razor

I love my single blade safety razor. I used to use a load of five and multi-blade safety razors with cartridges that you can replace but since I went to my old school double edge safety razor I never looked back.

Having a single cutting line means that you’ll be able to get really defined edges on your beard and for a short beard that is particularly important on the top cheek line and the neckline under the beard.

It’s a little bit of a learning curve associated with it if you’re used to using a cartridge razor blade but learn slowly and carefully and it will be one of the best decisions you have ever made!

A brush

Lastly, I think that if you have a short beard you should invest in a good quality natural hair bristle brush. Whether or not it is a or hairbrush or other natural fibre all that really matters is that it is able to glide smoothly through your hair under is comfortable to use.

You can purchase a plastic comb if you wish but just be careful that plastic comb is can easily damage beards if they are not manufactured in the appropriate way (diecast as opposed to machined) and also can cause a fair amount of static to build up in your hair. With shorter hair the static can cause more issues because the hair is not long enough to overcome it.

A natural hairbrush will also enable you to distribute beard oil much more evenly than a plastic brush will.

Now that you know the tools let’s have a look at the steps that you need to go through to reproducibly and expertly trim up your 1-inch beard.

The steps

Trimming up a short beard relies on you being able to confidently use trimmers and also use the different guards and guides to fade into different parts of your beard. Here are the steps that I would go through to trim up a 1 inch beard perfectly.

Use trimmers set to one inch

The first thing you should do before trimming up your 1 inch beard is use trimmers that you have purchased and make sure that the cutting length is set to 1 inch.

Past the trimmer over your face in a number of different directions to make sure that you are cutting to the same length all over. Particular trouble areas are where ever the trimmer has to change direction quickly and this includes the jawline and chin as well as up under the moustache.

Feel free to pass over the same area a few times so that you can be sure that each hair is trimmed to the right length. Sometimes I also find it useful to comb my hair in the opposite direction to growth in between passes of the trimmers.

Shave neckline

Next, I would use my single blade safety razor to trim up my neckline. Trimming up your neckline means taking away all of the hair below where your head attaches to your neck. There are a couple of ways that you can find your neckline that my preferred effort is to look down as far as you can and push your finger up into the crease of your neck.

That is where your beard should be trimmed to. I have a full video on my YouTube channel about how to shape the neckline of your beard.

Making sure the neckline is crisp and sharp is very important for 1 inch beards. That is because your beard is short enough that you can see the neckline clearly.

Shave cheek line

The cheek line of your beard is also very important no matter what the length of your beard. The cheek line enables you to define the starting point of your beard and make it look intentional and sharp.

The most important part of this trim is to cut back to the maximum density of your beard. Also, you should aim to get it symmetrical and even on both sides of your face so that it looks perfect from head on.

Slowly creep up on this line and check with someone if you are unsure about whether or not it looks good and even. Because cheeks can be one of the areas which grows the least it can be hard to get that first defined shape. But, when you do – you’ll know it!


The great thing about a shorter beard is that you have much more option to fade in to different parts of your face. Personally, I fade my beard from my cheeks into my baldhead along the side burn.

Two fade evenly I use marker posts on my face to tell me which areas should be trimmed to certain lengths and I use multiple graduations of trimmer length to get an even and smooth transition from beard hair to head.

It will take a bit of practice if you’re going to do on your own but fading to different parts and weaker parts of your beard will make your beard style look intentional and allow you to rock an independent and style that matches your beard growth.

Trim up stray hairs

Use your scissors to trim up any stray hairs that may have been missed by your trimmers. Here we are only looking to take off one or two hairs and not reduce the length of the bulk of the hair. These scissors are literally to give yourself that millimetre style precision which you cannot achieve with trimmers.

Only do this every couple of weeks because you may end up removing more hair than you wish if you do it every single day.

Use beard oil

Lastly, you should follow up your style with a good beard oil or butter. A good quality beard oil or butter will mean that it will soften up your beard hairs and also help your beard recover from all of the grooming that it has just been through.

You can use beard oil on any length of hair as it is also fantastic for the skin underneath your beard. If your beard is shorter than 1 inch I wouldn’t recommend using a butter into these long enough to need a more hydrating treatment.

How to maintain a one inch beard

Once you have trimmed in your style maintaining your 1 inch beard is easy to do. Daily brushing and oiling will keep your beard nourished and controllable.

At this point you may want to consider getting yourself a good quality beard shampoo and conditioner as head shampoo will dry out your beard as it is designed specially to remove the oil which builds up on your scalp.

I did a YouTube video about which beard soap was better and you can find the results here:

Do a trimming treatment once a fortnight to keep your 1 inch beard in check. If you want to grow your beard longer than 1 inch you should stop using your trimmers but still maintain your cheek line and neckline while you are letting your beard growth for three months or more.


A one edge beard is a milestone for any man. At this point your beard is full enough to look substantial and you can also start trimming it into a variety of different shapes. It can be held at this length if you still want to grow longer just as a little respite and to allow yourself to get used to the tools and techniques or maintaining a longer beard.

No matter what you decide to do enjoy the journey and take care of that beautiful beard!

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!