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How To Measure Your Beard Length (The Easy Way)

May 26, 2022
How To Measure Your Beard Length (The Easy Way)

Knowing how to measure your beard accurately is important – it’s a great way to monitor growth. 

In this article, we are going to go through the proper way to measure your beard. This also happens to be the accepted way that beards are measured in beard competitions. 

How To Measure Your Beard Length In 4 Steps

Although measuring your beard length as you would for a competition sounds complicated and daunting, it’s actually pretty simple.

The good news is, you don’t need any fancy equipment.

Let’s get to it.

1. Gather Your Equipment

Step one of any process, whether it be building furniture or measuring your beard, is always to gather your equipment.

As I said, you don’t need anything particularly fancy for measuring your beard length. In fact, I can pretty much guarantee that you’re likely to already have the required equipment somewhere in your house.

All you need for this is a tape measure and a mirror.

The tape measure you use can be the exact same type you use for your usual household DIY projects.

Here’s a simple example of one on Amazon

An optional extra, if you have one laying around, is a beard comb. But this is far from essential. 

2. Consider Washing And Combing

If you do have a beard comb with you, then this is the time to give your beard a quick brush through. You don’t need to spend long on this, it will just help to untangle your beard and align any stray hairs.

This should ensure you get the most accurate measurement for your beard, as tangled hairs will be shorter than untangled hairs. 

It’s another reason why it’s usually best to measure a clean and dry beard. Oily or damp beard hairs will also be shorter than clean and dry beard hairs. 

If on the off chance you are entering a beard competition (trust me – people do), you may want to style your beard exactly how you are going to be wearing it for the contest before measuring. 

This way you will get more of an accurate idea of how it will measure on the day.

With all beard competitions, make sure to carefully check the rules for the beard category you will be competing in.

But if you’re not using a beard comb, you can start measuring straight away. 

3. Measure From Lip To Lowest Beard Point

Put your tape measure (the metal end) to the lower border of your bottom lip. This is where you begin measuring from.

Make sure the tape measure is aligned in parallel with your beard. Take the reading from the longest length of your beard below your chin – this is your end measurement.

It’s essentially from your bottom lip to the lowest point of your beard. 

diagram showing how to measure beard length

Make sure you don’t stretch out your beard hair if you have curly hair. Most beard competitions measure your beard unstraightened.  

Even if you’re simply measuring your beard for your own personal monitoring, following these general rules is going to be good practice to ensure you maintain consistency. 

4. Repeat The Process

It’s recommended to repeat your measurement another couple of times to reduce human error. Use your mirror to make sure you are holding your tape measure vertically each time.

This way you are much more likely to get an accurate result.

If you have a longer beard that has a thinner, wispier part towards the bottom, you can take two measurements.

As well as taking a total beard length measurement including the wispy ends of the beard, you can also take a measurement to where your beard is the thickest.

This way, if you choose to trim off the straggly ends prior to your competition day, you will know what length you will measure in at. 

And that’s it – 4 simple steps and you’ve learned the correct way to measure your beard length.

Beard Length: Frequently Asked Questions

Beard length is a hot topic, and as well as knowing how to measure your beard, men often have other questions about beard length in general.

Here we’ll discuss some of the commonly asked questions men have about beard length. 

Is Beard Length Or Fullness More Important?

In general, having a full beard is more desirable than having a long beard, although opinions on this may vary. 

Unless you are training your beard for a competition category that values length above all else, most people would value fullness over length. 

The same applies to head hair; people tend to desire thick, strong-looking head hair, not long but thin hair with split ends that’s prone to breakage.

Having a fullness to your beard is often more aesthetically pleasing. However, it’s no secret that many men struggle with patchy growth and this can be a tough hurdle to jump, particularly in more “awkward” phases of growth.  

If this is the case, try to push through the difficult stages, or switch up the style to account for the patchiness. Consider goatees, Van Dykes, and other styles that remove notoriously patchy areas of growth such as the cheeks. 

Overall, trying to achieve a fullness to your beard is usually more appealing than trying to achieve length. 

It comes back to that old saying; quality over quantity.

The risk with prioritizing length over all else and never trimming is that you focus on the wrong thing. When you value length above everything else, you neglect key principles of beard grooming such as brushing, combing, and oiling. 

So the take-home here is, don’t sacrifice beard health for beard length.

Should You Measure Beard Growth In Time And Not Length?

People who are undertaking certain beard growth challenges often measure their growth in time and not length. On the other hand, people who have had their beards for longer tend to prefer to measure growth in length. 

You may have heard of the ‘Yeard’ challenge. 

The goal with the ‘Yeard’ challenge is to achieve a full year of beard growth. This means letting your beard grow free for 1 whole year.

This is one of those situations in which people often prioritize length over anything else.

It makes sense in this challenge to measure in time as opposed to length, as this is a time-oriented goal. Similarly, people growing a beard for the very first time or experimenting with their beard growth often measure in time instead of length.

This is because, in these situations, beard growth is viewed as a sort of challenge, where timestamps can be used to show others their progress.

People who have had their beards for a long time often prefer to measure in length. 

This is because measuring in time becomes less important if you plan to have a beard for pretty much most of your life. 

Men with beards may also prefer to keep their beards maintained at a specific length.

And if they decide to grow it longer, longtime beard owners often have a predetermined idea of the length they are aiming for.

How Do I Tell When I’ve Reached Terminal Beard Length?

To find out what your beard’s terminal length is, you need to avoid trimming it for a while and measure your beard once it appears to stop gaining length.

The terminal length of a beard is essentially the stage at which your beard stops producing additional length. 

When one of your beard hairs reaches its terminal length, it will release or shed to be replaced by new growth.

Every hair has its terminal length, so in order to know when your beard’s terminal length is reached, you just need to let it grow. 

This means avoiding trimming for a while so that you can measure the full length of your beard hair when it is uncut. 

Obviously, if you have been trimming your beard to a certain length up to this point, your beard hairs will all have cut ends.

Not to worry – you just need to stop trimming, and once you feel that your beard is not growing anymore have a look at the ends of the hairs.

If the bulk of your beard is made up of uncut hairs and it is not gaining additional length for some time – you have likely reached your terminal beard length. 

The important thing to remember is that terminal beard length varies a lot from person to person. It’s important not to compare yourself to others.

Finding out your terminal beard length is often an academic pursuit more than a practical one, as not many men choose to wear their beard at their terminal length. 

But if you want to know yours, you now know how. 

What’s The Most Attractive Beard Length?

Stubble, whether light or heavy, is often considered to be the most attractive beard length. 

This is according to an Australian study in 2016 which found that women found lightly and heavily stubbled faces more attractive than clean-shaven and fully bearded faces.

Obviously, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and there will be significant variation of opinion – many women still prefer clean-shaven or long-bearded men. 

The good news for guys with longer beards is that this study found that overall women prefer men with any amount of facial hair as opposed to fully clean-shaven.

Read this article to find out why stubble might be seen as the most attractive length.

At What Length Will My Beard Be Considered Long?

A good rule of thumb is that a beard can be considered “long” when it reaches 6 inches or more. 

People often ask this simply because their monitoring their own growth. 

But a small minority of people actually ask this because they’re entering a growth competition. 

When entering a beard competition, it’s important to check the fine print for each category to ensure you are entering at the right level. 

There may be minimum length requirements for each category that you need to meet before being allowed to participate.

Usually, there are separate categories for short, medium, and long/full beards. 

If you aren’t competing, categorizing your beard becomes less important. Although 6 inches is a good rule of thumb, it’s recommended to focus less on the number and more on how your beard looks and feels to you.

After all, the journey of growing your beard is often as satisfactory as (if not more than) 

the destination. 


Whether you’re competing or not, people often have a beard-length goal in mind. 

Measuring your beard length doesn’t need to be complicated, and hopefully, I’ve shown you today how simple the process really is.

But remember, length isn’t everything, and if you’re able to grow a beard that suits you, then you’re already winning.