Beard with me

Which stage of the facial hair cycle are you at?

May 01, 2020 01:33 pm | Updated 01:33 pm IST

During the Great Black Plague of London in the 1700s, Isaac Newton, all of 23, quarantined himself in his farmhouse and advanced the principles of Calculus and analysed the light colour spectrum. Today we are proud of banana bread or some idiotic coffee. To be fair, Newton wasn’t plagued by a million inane live videos, support group webinars and mundane web calls to dampen his focus.

Nothing scares us more than feeling useless and so usefulness is being sought out in the kinkiest of manners. Some bake, others brew, but all of us, no matter the gender, beard.

Having been through the cycle, here are the stages of bearding that one will go through.

1. Lazy : In the beginning, it starts as a harmless two days of shaving/trimming, skipped.

2. Curiosity : Seeing more than a 5 pm shade on our faces, one wonders where it could lead to; not women, they panic. In my case, I was curious to see if I could push out hair on my face having clearly failed on my head for decades.

3. Vanity : Now we start imagining ourselves hipsters — aka “the stubble suits me” stage — as we remain confined within our homes, but more so by our illusions of grandeur.

4. Messy : Facial hair, left to grow for the first time unrestrained, explores all directions in defiance of gravity. This is how we got the term ‘scraggly’.

5. Feasibility : By this point, devoid of any other challenges, we peg our will to live to the length of this black wiry fungus.

6. Sagacity : By now, the beard has acquired a certain silhouette, even if not flow or form. It makes us feel that we look wiser. The only wisdom I can shortcut and impart to you here is that it doesn’t.

7. Itchy : The stage name says it all; resting your face on a cushion feels like you just lay down on a pillow made of thorns. It rustles you awake when you turn sides.

8. Acceptability : By now the beard is parasitic; it is feeding off your food. Aka the Soup Strainer, Debris Collector, and if one doesn’t snap out of it and nip it, it spirals downhill fast from here.

9. Incompatibility : Now the beard occupies more of the face than expressions. Your speech sounds muffled and every time you scratch your beard, an ASMR addict somewhere gets excited.

Once here, the cycle repeats. The world, unwillingly, gets informed through an Insta update, or if you are feeling excessively useless, a ridiculous TikTok video.

Outside of Captain Haddock and that bearded lady from PT Barnum’s motley crew, nobody has ever managed to own a beard as if they were born with it. So tell me how much of a beard you have right now and I will tell you what state of quarantine you are at.

0 / 0
Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.