Facial Hair Types & Pre-Judging Guidelines

There are four overall facial hair types: Moustaches, Partial Beards, Full Beards, and Artistic.

These are divided into specialized categories (or "classes" outside of North America), such as Moustache Natural or Moustache English, which are then defined by the use of product and further defined by any category-specific shaping or styling.

The diagrams here are purely illustrative to show the essential differences between the styles.

Facial Hair Types

These categories are open to anyone who wants to participate. They are artificial and imaginative creations meant to resemble facial hair of any category, either literally or abstractly.

A moustache is composed of facial hair above the upper lip. Moustache hairs can grow from up to a maximum of 5/8" (1.5 cm) beyond the end of the upper lip.

A partial beard is any facial hair that is neither a full beard nor a moustache.

A full beard consists of hair on the upper and lower lip, the chin, the cheeks, and the sideburns, without any natural or shaven gap. Lengths are measured from the bottom of the lower lip.

Facial Hair Pre-Judging Guidelines

All beard lengths must be measured directly down from the base of the bottom lip. Use rulers or disposable razors to determine the required gaps for Partial Beard categories. If a competitor has long (head) hair and can obscure or blend into the beard, he will need to pull the head hair back for a clear and thorough evaluation of his facial hair.

Natural Categories

Acceptable styling methods to be used with Natural categories include brushing, combing, shampooing, and conditioning, including the use of beard oils and balms. Any styling method should be used to only accentuate, and must not be used in excess, resulting in an unnatural look. These categories show off the grooming of facial hair naturally in its most basic form.

Styled Categories

Legal styling aids in all Styled categories shall include only wax, hair spray, and other hair products. The use of hair extensions, fake and detached hair, or any form of hair pins or supporting elements is prohibited. Dreadlocked facial hair, due to the constricted state and product-dependent style, should be placed in the relevant Type and Styled category (most commonly Freestyle).

Artistic Categories

If thereโ€™s some uncertainty about which category to assign a fake beard when pre-judging, take into account the materials used and theme or presentation:

  • Are the materials visually similar to natural hair? Regardless of the category style recreated, is it styled or presented in a way that if it was made of actual hair it wouldnโ€™t look out of place on a manโ€™s face? โ†’ Realistic

  • Are there clearly repurposed materials used to represent facial hair? Are there unusual elements or objects involved not commonly found in facial hair? โ†’ Creative