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The 10 Day Stubble Length: Definition, Maintenance, Styles

The 10 Day Stubble Length: Definition, Maintenance, Styles

It’s a look worn by swarms of men globally, but exactly how long is the 10-day stubble length in mm?

The approximate stubble length a man can achieve in 10 days is 4 – 5mm, but the exact length can definitely vary according to the rate of growth. Genetics definitely plays a part. In general, however, it is safe to assume that the average male would be able to achieve this “heavy stubble” appearance after 10 days. Having said this, a millimeter or two either side of this figure would not be surprising.

There you have it, folks. You’ve heard the term being thrown around all over the place. Now you can actually put a quantifiable length to it.

But please do take it with a pinch of salt.

The actual length you will achieve at 10 days is exactly that. The length you will achieve. This length is specific to you and you only. It could be a couple of millimeters more or less.

Either way, if you’re desperate to know your length and what you can do with it, read on.

What we’re going to talk about in this article is how you can determine what your 10-day stubble length is, as well as how to maintain this look. After that, we’ll discuss why it’s so gosh-darn attractive, and go over some styles you can try with this versatile hair length.

By the way, if you’re looking for a few tools and products that could take your stubble to the next level, check out this article.

Why do people want the “10-day stubble look”?

An Australian study looked at how 8500 women assessed images of men with varying amounts and lengths of facial hair. What they found was fascinating and somewhat unexpected.

Lightly and heavily stubbled faces were both seen as more attractive than fully-bearded and clean-shaven faces.

Following on from this, the average man with any amount of facial hair (whether it was stubbled or fully-bearded) was seen as more attractive than the average clean-shaven man.

Interesting, right?

Having said that, fully-bearded men were seen as more “masculine” and better “long-term prospects” to women.

Facial hair and masculinity have long been intricately associated, likely due to the testosterone-dependent relationship.

But speaking purely about attractiveness, stubble won and it won in style. 10-day stubble was what was classed as “heavy stubble” in this project, and it sure did draw some high aesthetic praise.

Although this research project did draw some new attention towards the 10-day stubble length, it has almost unknowingly been worn by many a male trendsetter for years.

There are certain theories as to why this might be.

It may be because it appears more intentional than short stubble, which can sometimes be confused with just forgetting to shave or being unkempt. This is really only an issue if it isn’t maintained or shaped properly though.

It’s bold enough to make itself more apparent and subtle enough to not appear shabby. In contrast, the 5 o’clock shadow, although a personal favorite, can appear pretty “middle of the road” and indecisive.

Heavy stubble also maintains versatility, however. It rarely looks out of place or loses its sense of formality. Plus, the range of styles that can be achieved with heavier stubble is certainly wider than that of shorter stubble.

The trend of rocking the 10 day stubble length does appear to be expanding for these reasons. Whether we choose to embrace it or shun it is the question.

10 day stubble length

How to achieve and maintain the “10 day stubble” length

To make things clearer, it needs to be said from the outset that “10-day stubble” is going to be used interchangeably with “heavy stubble”. Because in reality, that’s what this popular term refers to. It’s a look more than it is a specific length.

In order to maintain any permanent stubble appearance, it’s important to follow a step-by-step routine and follow it religiously.

If you’d like an in-depth tutorial on how to do this, we’ve laid it all out for you right here. If not, no problem. We’ve summarized it for you below.

Step 1 – Grow it out

To achieve this look you must first let your beard grow out. It doesn’t have to be anything woodsman-esque. But it should be long enough to determine the contours your natural beard follows, as well as where it’s thickest and thinnest.

As you’d expect, it would make sense to let it grow for at least 10 days. Following this you’ll know what your “10-day look” actually is and whether it’s too much or too little. Take a photo on the tenth day if you’d like to remind yourself in the future.

Letting it grow out for 2 weeks would be ideal, and most men (although certainly not all men) would have a heavily stubbled appearance by the end of this period.

Step 2 – Go for the trim

Once this is done, it’s time to whip out your toolkit. An excellent stubble trimmer such as the Philips Norelco Oneblade QP6520/70 would be ideal, as it comes with a wide range of length settings going as low as 0.4mm. This allows for intricate control of length for different parts of the beard.

Check it out on Amazon by clicking here.

However, with heavier stubble, it isn’t entirely necessary and a great, normal electric beard trimmer such as the Brio Beardscape would work just as well. That’s because you’ll be able to use the shorter length guards to maintain it.

If you’re interested, check out the Beardscape on Amazon here.

Choosing the best beard trimmer for your specific needs is something which may not be as simple as it first appears.

The only parts of the beard you’d need a closer shave for would be the borders and everything outside them. In other words, you’ll want to define the cheek line, neckline, and sidelines, then shave everything outside them.

But you could easily use a safety, cartridge or straight razor to do this and don’t need a special stubble trimmer to do it. In fact, you’ll definitely get a closer shave with a razor in any case.

Before that, trim the beard down to 5mm. If this appears too long, reduce the size guard length to 4mm and re-assess.

In general, a good rule of thumb would be that anything over 5mm is more of a “short beard” than “heavy stubble”, and anything less than 3mm is “short stubble”.

Don’t feel as though you need to have “heavy stubble”. If you feel that shorter stubble or a short beard suits you better, not a problem. Use your intuition and just have fun experimenting.

As you get better at this, you’ll want to vary the size guard length so that you trim shorter in the thicker areas (usually the mustache and chin) and less short in the thinner areas (usually the cheeks).

Step 3 – Define the borders and shave outside them

The easiest and most effective way to define your beard borders is by using a beard shaping template. It will halve the time and stress involved. But it isn’t essential.

This is a reasonably priced one on Amazon.

Like we mentioned above, once you’ve trimmed the beard down to a length you like, define your borders (the neckline and cheek line) and shave any stray hairs outside these borders with a razor. Or, less preferably, the naked blade of your trimmer.

Remember to lather on some shaving foam or gel on and outside the borders. In fact, I like to use it to actually outline the borders themselves before I shave. That way the beard itself isn’t inadvertently shaved.

Then, wash yourself off, dab yourself dry and moisturize well to reduce any irritation. Exfoliating before trimming and shaving would also reduce irritation and razor bumps as well.

There you have it. The “heavy stubble” or “10 day stubble” playbook in a nutshell.

Again, if you’re interested, be sure to check this article out for a list of the best stubble grooming products (including trimmers) on the market today.

3 interesting styles you can try with the “10 day stubble” length

Now, the routine we’ve laid out is for the classic stubble beard. If you want to leave it at that it’s absolutely fine because it’s a phenomenal style.

But like we said, the 10 day stubble length is fun. It’s long enough to actually try out some more attention-grabbing and interesting styles. Now, the question of whether these styles will suit you is partially subjective and partially objective.

Subjectively, you may just not dig the style and that’s fine. Objectively, it’s well-known that your face shape plays a large role in whether or not a particular facial hairstyle will suit you.

At the risk of over-simplifying a complex phenomenon (which will most likely be the subject of a whole separate article), the beard and jaw should work together should work in unison to bring about a nice, natural, oval shape.

With square-shaped faces, short on the sides and fuller/longer on the bottom works better. Likewise for round faces. However, with rectangular faces, the sides should be fuller and the bottom shorter. Ah and oval faces? Well, the world is your oyster as most styles should work.

But don’t take it to heart too much. If you want to try out a style, just go for it. If you don’t like it, start from scratch – it’ll only take (approximately) 10 days to get back to square one.

Style 1 – The Circle Beard

10 day stubble length circle beard

The circle beard is commonly referred to as a variant of the modern goatee. In other words, hair on the chin that is allowed to connect to a mustache. Plus, as with any goatee, no hair on the cheeks.

Sounds great for those round and square faces, right?

Simple, stylish and not too difficult to maintain.

Style 2 – The Van Dyke

10 day stubble length van dyke

Yes. This beautiful and notorious facial style can work with heavy stubble. Again, it is sometimes called a variant of the goatee due to its hair on the chin but not on the cheeks characteristic.

But a key difference between this and the circle beard is that the beard is disconnected from the mustache.

Style 3 – The Chinstrap

10 day stubble length chinstrap

A narrow strip of hair travels along the jawline from one sideburn to the other. It works particularly well with heavy stubble which can add great definition to the jaw (if this is what you want).

If the hair gets longer however it can transform into the Abraham Lincoln style “chin curtain” instead. Which is also fine if you’re going for that presidential look.


There you have it. We’ve talked about the 10 day stubble length and what it can do for you. It’s attractive, versatile and easy to maintain.

Heavy stubble is a beard length every man should try out at a certain point in their lives. When used and styled correctly it can bring prominence to features you never thought you had.

If any of you beard warriors have any thoughts on the 10 day stubble length, please drop a comment below. Thanks for reading!

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