May 13, 2009

Guide to Facial Hair Styles

image018.jpgJohn Cawley III has a whole page devoted to facial hair styles, and I have to give kudos to him for putting the time and energy into developing it. What a cool project! Here's an excerpt:

"I distinguished facial hair styles on four criteria:
  • area: region of the face from which they are grown
  • shape: shape of the hair mass; this is what distinguishes a spade beard from other beards, or a handlebar mustache from other mustaches, for instance
  • style: more complex than simple shapes, this includes braiding, twisting, forking, etc
  • length: sometimes length of hair determines a style, which is partially the case with Fu Manchu mustaches or Wolverine-type sideburns

My primary criteria was area, from which three primary facial hair style categories derived:

  • mustaches: include hair growth in the upper lip region; technically, in the epilibial and optionally the synlabial or buccal areas; if they connect with the hairline at the preauricular area, they fall into another category (see below)
  • chin-whiskers: include hair growth in the chin region; technically, in the mental or sublabial and optionally gastromental, mandibular and buccal areas; if they connect with the hairline at the preauricular area, they fall into another category (see below)
  • chops or burns: includes hair growth in front of the ears; technically, at the preauricular and optionally buccal and mandibular areas; must connect to the hairline (or potential hairline if the individual shaves his head) at the preauricular area

From these three primaries, three secondary dual-area categories, one combination category, and one tri-area category derived:

  • chin-curtains: a chin-whiskers-chops combination; if chin-whiskers meet the hairline at the preauricular area, they move into this category
  • lip-curtains: a mustache-chops combination; if a mustache meets the hairline at the preauricular area, it moves into this category
  • circle-beards: a chin-whiskers-mustache combination; if chin-whiskers and a mustache meet, the resultant style falls in this category; if they do not meet, they do not form a circle and fall instead into the next category
  • chin-whiskers-mustache Combination: if a mustache and chin-whiskers together are considered a single style, but the two components do not meet, they fall into this category
  • note that the other two logical combination categories are missing; the addition of sideburns or chops to a mustache or chin-whiskers is generally considered a secondary facial hair style that supplements the primary mustache or chin-whiskers style, without actually recategorizing that primary style
  • beard or full-beard: although the term "beard" in general use is very vague (does it include chin-curtains? circle-beards? lip-curtains? etc), I would apply it or the term "full-beard" to the combination of mustache, chin-whiskers and chops

For the full guide, see Facial Hair Styles (copyright John Cawley III)

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Posted by Derek Markham at May 13, 2009 12:19 PM
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