Facial Awareness: Santa Claus

The Hirsute Bloggers Offer Tips for the Ultimate Christmas Decoration

The superbly stylish Facial Awareness bloggers Andrew Wren and Philippe Egger celebrate Christmas Day with their take on the festive season's ultimate beard wearer, curating a selection including work from photographers Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin, Adam Fedderly and Jeremy Liebman. “I liked the idea that Santa is not from the North Pole, but now lives among us, operating incognito,” says Wren. “Maybe the modern-day Santa is a successful artist, musician or writer.” Connoisseurs of the facially hirsute gentleman, the pair offer a contemporary interpretation that combines Saint Nicolas’s fecund growth and volume with a similarly classic and effortless dress code. “Santa is not a beard icon in my eyes,” admits Wren, “but Juergen Teller's self-portrait as Santa is pretty inspirational.” It takes more than mere grooming to become a Facial Awareness alum, with the art directors advocating that “the beard does not make the man.” “It all comes back to the individual and that attitude,” says Wren. “Ultimately the underlying tone is this kind of 'fuck you' composure.” Put away the razor and enjoy their guide to the art of bearding.

The technique
The beard should not appear groomed in any way, but be more of a natural, free growth. Taking New York's jeweler du jour, Philip Crangi, as inspiration, under no circumstances should clean-cut lines appear on the edge of the beard.

A certain attitude
The non-conformist attitude to society generally starts with the beard, swiftly followed by a collection of tattoos and a cigarette hanging from the lips.

For an understated look
A stalwart of the more creative neighborhoods internationally, the elegantly scruffy artist's beard—dark, full and slightly rounded—is the de rigueur accompaniment to an artistic lifestyle, and subsequently the understated choice of Yves Saint Laurent's Stefano Pilati.

Something more traditional
A long white beard accompanied by a weathered composure, a la Lawrence Weiner, is iconic. The festive version should also be long and white, thick, wiry but contain sustenance, preferably mince pie.

Making a statement
While occasionally making it difficult to distinguish between the world's top male fashion insiders and those from the Deep South, the trailer trash look is still as distinctive a choice as ever for Vivienne Westwood’s husband Andreas Kronthaler.
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