Men and women are different on the outside. One of the main markers of this difference is the ability to grow hair, women cannot grow hair in their lower faces such as a beard whereas men grow hair going from their sideburns and upper lip all the way down to their upper chest, such hair is as we call it in male grooming circles, “facial hair”. Women do have hair in their brows (known as eyebrows) although men will have more and have thicker hair too. However, only men can grow facial hair in the form of beards and moustaches.
From my point of view, the beauty of the Quran as I have read it as a humble outsider is that I can see both men and women as beautiful creatures of Allah almighty and their differences (between men and women) are simple expressions of the beautiful creation of Allah almighty. One of these differences is the ability to grow a beard for a man.
Now, my fellow brothers and sisters, I am just a humble reader of the Quran who has been captivated by the beauty and meaning that the Quran is capable of giving my life. As a professional barber, I would like to give my opinion about facial hair in men and what it means outside the religious circle. In no way do I intend my words to represent anything from the Quran as the Quran is above me and I’m just a humble student beginner.
Facial hair in men for many centuries has represented manliness, courage and wisdom. Warrior of all over the world would grow thick beards and moustaches to protect their faces from the cold and to make their faces appear bulkier. Facial hair, until not that long ago, was a very worthy trait to have as a man and a sign of being a man.
However for the last 2 decades, facial hair in Western men seems to have been trivialized. Men now have a wide range of facial hair trimmers and electric shavers – click to see an example from an actual barbershop oriented forum – available to them to shape their facial hair in a way that loses the primordial purpose of a beard or a mustache and which prioritizes overindulgence and lavishness in their lifestyle. As a barber, I am trained in performing clean and close shaves for men with straight razors which require a steady hand so as to get the closest shave regardless of how much hair there is or how thick the hair is. In my 35 years in this profession, it has been in these last 2 decades that men have started experimenting with beard and moustache shapes that serve no purpose other than to encourage narcissism.
There are over 30 different types of electric shavers and beard trimmers (from the link I posted before belonging to www.barbershopforums.com ), all geared to the Western male consumer who will pay anything for a hair clipper or shaving tool that will make him look better and enhance his male grooming efforts. There is no practical purpose of “decorating” your beard with hair designs or funny moustache shapes yet men continue with their efforts to trivialize their facial hair. What happened to simply having a beard as part of being a man and using it for practical purposes of remaining warm in cold environments or to interpret the words of your God, or as in our case, the words of Allah almighty?
Western men have lost track and are getting worse and worse. My old barbershop is the one exception in my part of town as my barbershop caters to middle age men and more and more to an increasing muslim clientele through my ever increasing group of muslim brothers. But will you believe it, right on the other side of the street where my barbershop is there is a barbershop for younger men that constantly plays techno music, where inside the barbershop the male barbers have tattoos, long hair and bleached hair hairstyles and even those earrings that swell the earlobes?? And they even have posters in the windows of the barbershops that promote promiscuity. I have asked them to take those posters down as they are disturbing my inner peace and the inner peace of the brothers who think like me, but my petitions have only been met with hostility.
In the barbershop mentioned above, men shave their facial hair to have “funny” (if at all) patches of hair left on their faces or have their beards trimmed and shaped in strange shapes. Or even have their beards bleached in different colours! The other day I saw a man with his beard green and his moustache blue!! This same man had a hairstyle that I would only call “bizarre” and his hair was bleach platinum. I would not mind if this had been a one off encounter but I see men leaving these new age barbershops that look exactly the prototype of this young man I am referring to.
Being a barber for so many years and practically during that same amount of time owning my own barbershop, I have seen many male fashion trends come and go. However, what I have seen come but not go is the destructive behaviour that Western men seem to be doing on and on to themselves. For that, I try to add my good deed and I always keep several copies of the Quran to allow any men getting haircuts to be inspired by the Quran and see the beauty of seeing inside oneself and not seeing the outside alone.
Thank you for reading my opinion brothers and sisters.