Gustave H.’s mustache isn’t “pencil thin.” It’s nowhere near the horizontal spaghetti string sported by the legendary John Waters. But it has something important in common with the pencil mustache: Its handsome tidiness is attributable to shaving a little mustache off the top and actively regulating the ‘stache’s “height.” This is a stylistic risk and a very maintenance-heavy proposition. It requires a steady hand. To make matters even more complicated, Gustave’s mustache’s top borders are not parallel to his lip line—they run up to the base of his nose at an angle, so at the center of his lip (the philtrum) his ‘stache is at full height.
Convinced this is the style for you? Here’s how to pull it off.
• A bushy, untamed mustache
• A clear shave gel
• A pair of mustache scissors
• A mustache comb
• A single-blade razor (either a safety razor or the “precision trimmer” on the back of a multi-blade razor)
1. First, comb your mustache bristles downwards, and make sure your whiskers are dry—hair often appears longer when wet. Using the mustache scissors, trim the whiskers along your upper lip line, starting in the middle and progressing outwards. Look straight ahead to ensure an even cut.
2. If your mustache is particularly bushy, use the comb to lift small sections of hair, and trim off the tips with your trusty scissors. This will help reduce volume.
3. After prepping your face with warm water, apply a clear shave gel liberally to the upper lip: Remember, you can always subtract more, but you can’t add it back. Using your single-blade razor or trimmer, slowly—and we mean SLOWLY—trim the top of your mustache. The top of the ‘stache should be curved, not straight, so shave in small increments to produce a slim, sloping contour.
4. Once styling is complete, keep a mustache comb handy to maintain a smooth, punctilious appearance. L'Air de Panache cologne sold separately.
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Photo Credit: Fox Searchlight