Let’s be honest, sideburns are a risky venture. The last time fully fledged muttonchops were on trend, the BeeGees were cool and so were flared trousers. But a more conservative style of sideburn still has its place in 2017 — perfect for men who want to lose their full beard but still retain a little facial hair.
Sideburns suit all face shapes, but they’re especially flattering to men with longer heads because they make the face appear wider. Square or circle face shapes should opt for a little more length — to the bottom of the ear lobe, at the most — to frame the face with some extra length. Or, if you’ve got a face like Hugh Jackman, go ahead and rock the full Wolverine.
Grow them out
Establish some stubble before sculpting your sideburns from there — whip out the clippers after one or two week’s growth, cutting off your whiskers before the bottom of your ear (any longer starts to wander into the neckbeard, fedora, Dungeons and Dragons territory). Sideburns should be about an inch wide — for most blokes, that just follows the natural growth outline of the beard — with a clean bottom edge.
Sideburns aren’t for everyone — don’t even try if the facial fuzz on the side of your face just isn’t that thick. But less-than-bushy sideburns can be enhanced by a tapered fade into your hairstyle, blending down from thick hair around the temples down to a thinner tightly cropped sideburn to mask any patchiness. A faded sideburn can also merge into a stubbly beard for a rugged contemporary look.
You’ll need to dust off those clippers roughly twice a week to keep things tidy, especially if you’re rocking particularly clean, styled edges or that faded style that blends into your hair — your stubble grows quicker than the strands on top of your head so you’ll lose the blended effect if facial hair isn’t properly taken care of. And even though it might feel silly using a product on such a small area of growth, there’s nothing wrong with a bit of beard oil to condition the whiskers and moisturise the skin below.