Freshen Up: Braun's Freshers' Week Beardvolution Guide

Sep 20, 2016, 03:00 ET from Braun

LONDON, September 20, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --


  • 73 per cent of guys say that facial hair has the power to cover up a heavy night
  • 48 per cent of girls say that guys beard hygiene is a concern
  • 81 per cent of guys groom their beard before a date

Considering trying on a 'tache in the hopes of looking intellectual, sporting side burns to rival George Best, or else just forgoing shaving completely in the hopes of morphing into some rugged Bear Grylls-like machine? Think again. These are three of the #groomingfails that turn uni girls off the most, according to research by male grooming brand Braun.

But let's face it: you don't want to waste time worrying about your grooming regime when you first get to uni. To take away the guesswork, Braun has conducted research into the grooming faux pas of guys' during Freshers' Week, quizzing both them and their female counterparts on what it takes to make a solid first impression when it matters most.

With the help of award-winning Mayfair based barber, Parsa Rad, Braun has come up with the dream Freshers' Week grooming solution: a three-week, three-step Freshers' beardvolution.

The following step-by-step guide will take you from first impression to first date and first lecture in three strategic looks that will mask a multitude sins, so you can make the right impression at the right time. Follow these steps and you can focus on enjoying the nights you won't remember with the people you'll never forget.  



By far the biggest grooming nightmare for guys during the first week of uni is having spots and acne, with almost seven in every ten guys (69 per cent) putting it in their top three.  37 per cent of guys said a puffy and hungover face is what they fear, with under-eye bags coming in a close third (33 per cent). A negative reaction to a new look, from newly found friends was cited as a considerable fear too (25 per cent).

But did you know that a beard can be your secret weapon if you're still wearing the effects of the night before? A surprisingly high 73 per cent of the guys we asked agreed that solid facial hair is a safe bet for covering up the tell-tale signs of a heavy night, especially compared to the 2 per cent of guys that opt for makeup to do the same job.

It probably comes as less of a surprise that almost half (48 per cent) of girls say that guys' beard hygiene is a concern, citing it as a likely cause of spots, whereas less than a fifth (18 per cent) of guys worry about this.

To get and maintain a bearded look during Freshers' Week, Braun styling expert, Parsa Rad says:

"A full beard is a great way to make a bold statement and to make yourself look more grownup, without the daily maintenance of a clean shave.  

Whilst the best thing about having a beard is the care-free look it exudes, it's important to keep the skin on the rest of your face in prime condition so you don't look like a total caveman!  

Use a face wash and moisturiser every day to keep the skin fresh, clean and clear. Using a gentle exfoliator (also known as a scrub!) 2-3 times a week will make your skin look smooth and help to reduce ingrown hairs, too.  

The Braun Multi Groomer is a really versatile tool that shaves, styles and trims just about any beard style you can think of. Use the longest length guard that comes with the tool to keep the hair on your cheeks and upper lip shorter than on the rest of your face.  

You can also completely remove the guards and use the foil shaver by itself to tidy up your neck and upper cheeks." 



So you've made some friends and maybe even scored a date. It's time to get recognised for your style. Designer stubble adds understated style and is low maintenance, so it's a great look for when you want to be taken a little more seriously.

According to the research carried out by Braun, uni guys' pre-date grooming rituals include trimming their beard (81 per cent), manscaping (21 per cent), a full-body exfoliation and moisturising (18 per cent), a blow dry (17 per cent) and applying a face mask (4 per cent).

And girls would seem to agree that a groomed look is here to stay. Whilst a beard has its benefits in week one, in week two it's time to trim it back, as a meagre 4 per cent of girls say it's the most attractive facial hair look.

On the other hand, designer stubble is by far the most stylish way to make a good first impression. 55 per cent of girls say that stubble seen on the likes of Becks is the most attractive.

To take beard down to a designer stubble, Parsa advises:

"Designer stubble is probably the most fuss-free look of all to maintain. Easier to keep clean than a full beard and without the daily maintenance of a clean shave, it's the perfect relaxed but stylish look.  

It's a good idea to fade stubble in and out to avoid harsh lines on your cheek and neck. The Braun Multi Groomer is perfect for this as the short length guard that comes with the tool will let you vary the length between 1.2 and 6mm. It can be good to keep the hair around the jaw slightly longer to add definition to the face.  

Again, use the clean shave function to tidy up your upper cheeks and neck for a finished look." 



When lectures start, a clean shave will show everyone that you mean business.

If you want lecturers to take you seriously, the best thing you can do is go clean-shaven. More than one in seven (72 per cent) of respondents said that it's the best thing a guy can do to make him look intelligent. But don't be afraid to switch it back to stubble throughout term time to keep things interesting!

To clean up your act, Parsa advises:

"I always recommend that my clients shave straight after the shower to soften the hairs and pores. Also 2-3 times a week when in the shower, use a gentle exfoliator to remove dead skin cells, as this will reduce ingrown hairs and let you get the closest possible shave. 

Using the clean shave function of the Braun Multi Groomer, go against the grain gently and in short strokes to avoid pulling the skin. It delivers a really efficient shave! You can use your other hand to hold your skin tight whilst shaving, which will allow you to shave more closely. 

As soon as you've finished, splash your face with cold water to close the pores. Apply some post-shave balm and moisturiser to sooth your skin and lock in the moisture for the rest of the day." 

With the Braun Multi Groomer you can shave, style and trim just about any beard style you can think of. The ultimate 3-in-1 systems allows you to trim, style and shave all with one product. The versatile groomer has a shaver and trimmer with three attachments, and is the ideal tool to complement any grooming regime. RRP £69.99. Available at Argos and Amazon.

Parsa Rad is Artistic Director at one of the most respected men's salons in the country, The Refinery in Mayfair, London. In 2014 Parsa won the title of Best British Wet Shave Barber at the British wet-shave championships. He has also been named one of the best barbers in London by Esquire magazine.

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