Tutorial How to grow, maintain, and wax your handlebar 'stache

Discussion in 'Tutorials' started by swarden43, Dec 31, 2014.

  1. swarden43

    swarden43 "It's your shave. Enjoy it your way."©

    There have been a lot of questions about growing a mustache, how to maintain one, and how to wax. I've had my handlebar 'stache for about five years, I guess, so I've come to learn a bit. I'd like to share that with you.

    Step one of growing a mustache is easy - let it grow. That does not mean trim it. It means LET IT GROW. That is going to take some folks a couple of weeks, it may take others longer. No, there is nothing you can do to make it grow faster. While you are letting it grow, use the time to decide what type of 'stache you would like. Do a simple Google search for mustache styles and choose one of your liking. Naturally, some will take longer to grow out than others.

    Should you decide on something neat and trim, you're eventually going to need some trimmers. I use a Whal beard and mustache trimmer, battery operated. It comes with three clip-on combs to vary the length you want. Or use it without the combs to get in real nice and tight.

    Okay, on with the waxing of the 'bars.
    stache 1 (Medium).JPG
    A little unruly, eh? Now you see why I need the wax.

    stache 1a (Medium).JPG
    Dirigo Blue is my own creation of bees wax and Vaseline. The comb can be found in any beauty section of your department store. I even used an eyebrow comb for a while.

    Here's a bit I put together on making my own wax.
    (the pics didn't follow - click on the arrow next to swarden43 above)
    I've also used Oregon Wild Hair and FireHouse Wacky Tacky.
    Please - avoid the Pinaud Clubman you find in the shaving isle. Almost no hold at all.

    Because my wax is a super stiff hold formula, I need to soften it up with a hair dryer. Some folks find their wax will soften up enough it kept in their front pocket for a while. DO NOT ALLOW IT TO BECOME LIQUID.
    stache 3 (Medium).JPG

    Use your finger nail like a bulldozer and push a small bit up onto your finger nail.
    stache 4 (Medium).JPG

    Transfer that to the pad of the finger on your other hand.
    stache 5 (Medium).JPG
    Distribute the wax between your two fingers.
    stache 6 (Medium).JPG
    Then smear it into your 'stache. I'll usually get 3-4 scoops into my 'stache before going on. You may need more or less, just something you're going to have to experiment with to find out how much works for you.
    stache 7 (Medium).JPG
    Next I use the hair dryer on my 'stache to liquify all the wax I've just deposited. Keep the heat on it until it's all liquid (I still have a bit to go in this shot)
    stache 8 (Medium).JPG

    Now the comb comes into play. Keeping the heat on the 'stache, comb through to evenly distribute the wax.
    stache 9 (Medium).JPG
    Once combed through, I'll use my fingers to get the shape and curl I want.
    stache 10 (Medium).JPG
    For the final image... ;)
    stache 11 (Medium).JPG
    (I don't do selfies very well :D)

    Here are a few more links for those who might be interested.

    FireHouse Wacky Tacky
    Oregon Wild Hair Wax

    Handlebar Club
    sdguero, RyX, JBSharp and 8 others like this.
  2. Justin Linker

    Justin Linker Wetshaving belieber

    Good job. Handlebar doesn't suit me unfortunately. I'm understandably jealous.
    swarden43 likes this.
  3. CyanideMetal

    CyanideMetal Wild and crazy guy

    What a great stache, Steve!
    Robyflexx, Rufus T. and swarden43 like this.
  4. fimpster

    fimpster Well-Known Member

    Nice, similar to how I've done it too. I've used Firehouse Light Wax, The Woodsman from The Bearded Bastard, and Col. Conk. The Conk is no good.
    Robyflexx and Rufus T. like this.
  5. HolyRollah

    HolyRollah BaconLord Staff Member

    Excellent, Steve.
    Easy enough to follow and encouraging! I've probably another 3-4 weeks of growth to get to the 'stache length you display.
    RyX, Robyflexx and swarden43 like this.
  6. HolyRollah

    HolyRollah BaconLord Staff Member

    BTW, I ordered two tins of the Firehouse Wax; one for me (light-colored), and the dark WackyTacky for my son…..
    Robyflexx and Rufus T. like this.
  7. Stubbl E

    Stubbl E Well-Known Member

    It's really easy to make your own 'tash wax as well. Just melt a 50/50 mix of Beeswax and petroleum jelly/Vaseline over low heat and add a few drops of Vetiver or whatever essential oil you prefer, or none at all. Pour off into an appropriately sized tin, let it set and Bob's your mother's brother. :)

    You can also fine tune it for more or less hold, or for warmer or colder temperatures, by just changing the 50/50 ratio. More beeswax for more hold or warmer temps and more Vaseline for less hold or cooler temps.
    ejmolitor37, HolyRollah and fimpster like this.
  8. swarden43

    swarden43 "It's your shave. Enjoy it your way."©

    If you're worried about the darker Wacky Tacky coloring your 'stache, don't be. I was kind of hoping it might hide some of my gray. Didn't happen; combed in absolutely colorless.
    Rufus T. likes this.
  9. HolyRollah

    HolyRollah BaconLord Staff Member

    Either way, I'll be covered. I'll have the light stuff, and I can 'borrow' the dark should I get the urge….;)
  10. RaZorBurn123

    RaZorBurn123 waiting hardily...............

    Very nice! Steve, you've got a GREAT stache!
    Robyflexx and swarden43 like this.
  11. HolyRollah

    HolyRollah BaconLord Staff Member

    Yeah, I'm not opposed to making my own—and I probably will. My list of do-it-yourself stuff is already too long, so I'll probably use the store-bought stuff, see how I like using it, then decide if I'm ready 'to mind my own bees wax….' :D
    swarden43 likes this.
  12. Shavington

    Shavington Member

    Grew my first handlebar mustache this year and i love it! I use the Fireman wacky tacky and brothers love hazelnut to keep it waxed up. The brothers love is my favorite. The directions on this forum are spot on if you want ro grow yourself one.
    swarden43 and Rufus T. like this.
  13. Rufus T.

    Rufus T. Late for dinner

    :signs011: Ditto on the directions!

    Great advice Steve, I've been using the FH Wacky Tacky with the hair dryer method for years. (Nice to have another use for the hairdryer now that I no longer need it for its primary function.) ;)

    When in a rush to get on my way in the car, I just throw the wax tin on the dash and blast on the defroster for a minute or two to loosen it up. I divide the wax up into empty tins to help speed up that process. (Also helps that I live in a cold weather climate when using this method...Seattle.)

    I used to keep a close-cropped mustache and beard. Have been letting it grow out the past month. Almost there with the length for proper bars.
    RyX, Robyflexx and swarden43 like this.
  14. Rufus T.

    Rufus T. Late for dinner

    Ditto that as well. No color change with the Wacky Tacky for me. My mustache just naturally comes in much darker than my grey beard.
    Seabs and swarden43 like this.
  15. Drygulch

    Drygulch Snowballs

    Supporting Vendor
    Mine is coming along. image.jpeg
    RyX, youngunn and Robyflexx like this.
  16. swarden43

    swarden43 "It's your shave. Enjoy it your way."©

  17. Drygulch

    Drygulch Snowballs

    Supporting Vendor
    My blend in the middle to be a little softer, and Dirigo Blue on the tips to keep them curved. I have found I can do this without a blow dryer.

    The amount of mockery my wife would give me for using a blow dryer on my face is very high. I have been working around that.
  18. youngunn

    youngunn Where's my TSD aftershave balm???

  19. ejmolitor37

    ejmolitor37 Member

    I will confirm that the Pinaud wax does not hold worth a snot I just shave my stache off because of this reason, I would wax it and get what I wanted then in like an hour I had a frowning stache :(o Really irked me. Luckily I can grow hair like its my job so I will order something better and give it another go. Good tutorial though thanks:D
    swarden43 likes this.
  20. swarden43

    swarden43 "It's your shave. Enjoy it your way."©

    Those two links above for Firehouse wax and Oregon Wild Hair wax might be worth checking out.
    ejmolitor37 likes this.

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