31 Viking Beard Looks, So You Can Pillage with Style
Are you looking to ratchet up your masculine visage by a factor of ten, and install fear in your enemies? And everybody else you come across, too? Are you ready to grow a beard that says, "I will invade your native lands, set fire to your thatched huts, and pillage your villages?"
If that's what you're looking for... well, have we got a post for you.
Here we've collected 31 of our favorite Viking beard looks, each with an image and a quick note about what makes the style worthwhile and how to get it. After all that, we've got a few sections on how to grow and maintain a Viking beard, because it's a little trickier than just letting it grow out for a year or two. It actually takes some work (but for most guys with beards, it’s totally doable).
Please note: we made the decision not to include images of guys that LOOK like actual Vikings. We considered it, but who among us has the time or opportunity to dress like a Viking every day? We thought it would be better to find images of normal(ish) guys wearing various Viking beard styles, so that you can figure out what might work for you. Also, images of actual Vikings were hard to find and really expensive, so, alas. No Viking photos.
Alright, let's plunder:
Viking Beard Styles by Length and Width
There are no strict rules about the ideal length for a Viking beard. Here are some options from tight mid-length beards to ultra-long options.
"The Fisherman" Long-Length Viking Beard
A simple fisherman Viking beard is an excellent choice for a man who wants to look effortlessly rugged. It’s a full beard maintained at a long (but not too long) length, with an equally full mustache connected to it. It’s enough to impress, but not so large that it needs extra maintenance.
No product, no special styling—just a healthy, thriving beard with a round, tapered shape that will flatter most men’s face shape. Take note of the outline where the beard meets the cheeks—this is a shining example of how to keep a beard looking naturally groomed without overdoing it.
The Long, Straight Viking Beard
This is a neater, crisper take on the Viking beard style. If you like the ultra-clean look, aim for this look! This beard is long and very tapered, so the hair on the sides is a little shorter than the hair at the center. It’s made even sharper by the very nicely trimmed outline—the kind of look that'll make your face look cut and masculine.
If you’re not naturally blessed with straight facial hair, you’ll need to take a beard straightener to your growth.
The Mid-Length Viking Beard
Does a mid-length beard count as a Viking beard? We think so! Multiple sources suggest that Vikings sported both short and long beards! As long as your beard is thick and full, it absolutely qualifies.
So if you’d like to maintain a medium-length beard, the key is to have a great shape. This style is tapered perfectly to elongate the face, but with plenty of fullness at the sides. The mustache connects to the beard, and the outline itself is nicely blended for a more rugged look.
The Long, Feather-y Viking Beard
You can still rock a long, impressive beard, even if you weren’t naturally blessed with very thick hair. This feathery beard stands out thanks to its length, as well as the strategic thicker portion above the chin, almost giving the illusion of a goatee.
The large, pointed mustache gives this look a quirky twist that’s not exactly Viking-esque but makes for a memorable, flamboyant look.
The Dr. Seuss / Super-Long Viking Beard
This is a Viking beard that requires some careful cultivation. Talk about #beardgoals!
Even though it’s full and long, it’s also very friendly and inviting thanks to its clean yet rounded shape. The hair at the temples fades nicely into the beard itself but the extra-full mustache adds a soft, friendly touch.
If you’re a guy with naturally curly or wavy hair that’s starting to go in the way of salt-and-pepper, it’s the kind of beard you can aspire to achieve!
The Extra-Wide "Hagrid" Viking Beard
This beard is straight out of a fantasy novel. Full, lengthy, and not too groomed—it’s the perfect beard for a man who’s about to save a boy from his hovel under the stairs or protect a group of Hobbits on their way to destroy a magic ring.
Although this beard isn’t overly styled, there are still some thoughtful touches here. The mustache itself is very full, but the cheeks have a nice and clean outline (and you can achieve that look, without too much mess, with a vacuum beard trimmer). If your hair is too wavy for this style, you can straighten your beard.
The Pleated Platypus-Tail Viking Beard
This is another excellent example of a mid-length Viking beard. The shape reminds us of a paddle-like platypus tail, hence the name. This kind of beard should be brushed, to achieve that kind of full, fluffy appearance. The cheek line is trimmed to be a little rounded, which is a clever touch that shapes the face and shows that the man sporting this beard put some real thought into how it would look.
The Broom-Bottom Viking Beard
If you don’t mind a messy-ish look, a broom-bottom beard can be kind of fun. It brings to mind a man who truly believes in keeping things natural. Sure, it’s a little wacky, but in a fun way that brings to mind your favorite philosophy professor or a kindly wizard.
Even though the bottom of this beard is a little wispy and messy, it’s still worth mentioning the thoughtful touches: The cheek line is cut on a steep angle from the temples to where the mustache and beard meet, which helps elongate the face. There is also a little soul patch under the lips instead of complete growth, which is a nice way of having a full beard while still showing off a little more of your face.
Hybrid Viking Beard Styles
Here are some examples of how you can pair your Viking beard with other styles or with jaunty mustaches!
The Long Goatee Viking Beard
If a Viking had a goatee, this is exactly what it’d look like. It’s an intimidating look that’d also fit a guy who likes to spend his time at metal concerts or atop a motorcycle. Since it’s technically a goatee, the cheeks, jawline, and sideburns are shaved clean, with hair only growing at the front, but looking as full as any great Viking beard.
The Van Dyke Viking Beard
A Van Dyke is a type of beard inspired by 17th-century facial hair styles. Technically, all goatee and mustache combos count as a Van Dyke, but a nicely curled handlebar mustache is what makes the look so memorable.
We think of it as a dapper beard style, but this take on it is a little rough around the edges thanks to the stubbly cheeks and the longer, unshaped goatee. If you want your facial hair to have a gentlemanly charm with a Viking edge, this is a great option.
The Handle-Bar Mustache Viking Beard
This look isn’t overly clean, which contributes to that Viking vibe. The cheek line is mostly untouched and the beard is a little mussed, great for a guy who wants to put out a “devil may care” image.
The Duckbeard Viking Beard
To achieve this type of beard, you’ll need to keep the sides of your beard trimmed in this tapered style (and we usually recommend Wahl beard trimmers for that sort of thing), while focusing on how the shorter sides frame your jawline. The cheek line itself is also shaped with very straight lines, which contributes to the overall effect.
The Viking Beard with Walrus Mustache
Let your mustache grow as lush as your beard. It might make kissing a little difficult, but it’s worth the awe that comes from the combination of a lush walrus mustache with a full mid-length beard. There’s a lot of grooming that keeps this beard style from looking messy—the cheek line is nicely blended, the beard itself is well-shaped, and the stache is brushed.
The STRONG Mustache Viking Beard
Strong and masculine, this is another Viking beard look that stars a handsome, well-groomed mustache. We love this thick take on a handlebar—it just takes a bit of wax to flip up those ends. Paired with the dense and thick mid-length growth, it’s a powerful look.
The Yeard Viking Beard
The term yeard is a portmanteau of the words “year” and “beard,” so you can probably guess that it talks about a beard that’s had a year to grow. Not every guy can achieve this much length in just a year—for some, it’d take two or three years.
If you do decide to let your beard grow this long, remember the importance of keeping the mustache and cheek line clean and groomed.
The "Half-Amish/Half-Viking" Beard
If you want to try something a little different, why not pair your Viking beard with some Amish-style trimming? If you’re not familiar, the Amish are famous for sporting thick mid-length beards while keeping their cheeks and mustache shaved clean. In this example, the mustache is closely trimmed to show off a bit of the face while still looking modern.
The Viking Cowboy Beard
Cowboys and Vikings are both rugged, masculine figures with a reputation for not shying away from conflict. So why not sport a Viking beard with a Wild West twist? This mid-length beard embraces a naturally more textured hair pattern. There’s some subtle shaping and outlining that keeps this style flattering without losing the edgy effect.
The Viking Mustache with Chiseled Edges
This well-chiseled Viking ‘stache and beard combination is extremely flattering and proves that curly hair and beards are a great match. It’s perfect for any guy who wants to bring the most out of his features.
The mustache connects with the beard, but the sides are shaved cleanly, with a sharp cheek line that adds definition. Then, the beard itself is shaped like a chevron, creating the illusion of a very sharp jawline.
The Viking Beard with English Mustache
A slim handlebar mustache, also known as an English mustache, is a refined and sleek touch that works well with a V-shaped beard. If you want to have Viking-worthy length while still looking elegant, this is one way to do it. Take special notice of how well the neck is trimmed—it contributes to the sharpness of this beard.
Viking Beard Styles with Specific Haircuts
The hair on your head and the hair on your face should exist in harmony. Here are some excellent ways of pairing a Viking beard with all sorts of haircuts!
The Bald Viking with Beard
For a lot of us men, losing our hair is just a fact of life, and embracing a Viking beard is the best way to deal with it. Somehow, a magnificent beard more than makes up for that loss of head hair. This long beard has structured sides but with length through the center, to offset any “egg-head” potential.
The Viking Beard with Long Hair
On the other hand, if you’re not experiencing any hair loss problems, you can pair your beard with an equally impressive head of hair! Bonus points to this guy for really feeling the moment. Long hair and a long beard go together perfectly, especially if you want to have that metalhead vibe. Just make sure to put an equal amount of effort into grooming both your beard and hair!
The Viking Beard with Dreads
Viking beard meets island vibes. If you have natural hair, you can rock both a beard and dreads. You can go all-out and let your beard grow long, or take inspiration from this image and trim your beard into a neat, mid-length growth.
The Viking Beard with Fade
A lot of beards connect to the head via the sideburns, but this image proves that a fade and a beard are an excellent pairing. You just need to remember that the fade haircut has to go both ways! The beard itself is exceptionally shaped to give structure to the face for that crisp, ultra-masculine vibe.
The Modern-Day Erik the Red Viking Beard
A red Viking beard is actually very historically accurate. There were plenty of redheads amongst the original Vikings—it’s even said that they’re the ones who brought the ginger gene to Ireland! So if your beard has a tawny tint, don’t let that discourage you from growing it out!
This is an especially modern take with a clean, faded outline and a more rectangular shape. The coiffed hair, however, is what makes the look truly sleek.
Viking Beards With Braids and Knots
There’s an argument to be made that a Viking beard has to be braided. We don’t think that’s true, but undeniably, braiding your beard is half the fun of growing it out!
The Braided Beard, Long-Length
This is an extra-long and full beard many men will aspire towards, but not all will be able to achieve. That said, if you’re at the point where your thick, long growth extends well past your waistline, pulling it into a plait might be the only way to keep it under control! When creating this kind of style, make sure to braid your beard hair loosely in order to ensure the braid looks full.
The Braided Viking Beard and Handlebar
Dapper mustache meets Viking ruggedness! This is the kind of beard style that truly stands out. Combining a thick handlebar mustache with a long beard is already a notable choice, but the long plait just elevates it to a brand new level. If you want your plait to look just as neat without any flyaways, make sure to brush out your beard and smooth some beard oil through it before pulling it into a braid.
The Split-Braid Viking Beard
When one braid isn’t enough, why not go for two? If your beard is very thick, you can create two impressive plaits instead of one, and add a couple of metal beads on the end for good measure. Once again, making sure that the braid isn’t too tight is the trick for maintaining that volume.
If you aspire to this kind of look, you can’t shape your beard too much as it grows out. You’ll want to keep the sides long and full so you can have enough hair for thick braids on each side.
The Long Viking Beard with a Single Knot
This beard style requires even less effort. Grab a single elastic and tie-off your beard. Voila, your tough-guy look is complete. That said, while this kind of beard is totally Viking-worthy, we do think it’d benefit from a bit of trimming and shaping to keep those sides tapered.
Viking Beards for Older Gents
A Viking beard looks great at any age! If you’re sporting silvery locks, let these bearded fellows inspire you to reach Valhalla with glory.
The "Classic" Viking Beard in Gray
Classic, dapper, and at a manageable length—who said all Viking beards had to be wild and long? The shape is refined and thoughtful, with tapered sides and a squared-off front that have a powerful effect. The equally impressive handlebar mustache seals the deal on this masculine facial hair style.
The Senior Viking Beard
A little wiser and fiercer, this short Viking beard is an excellent choice for a more cerebral man. It’s a hybrid of a rounded and tapered beard shape, with very short sides and a long goatee that isn’t pointy. It’s a great approach to styling a shorter beard in a way that makes it seem longer but not over-styled.
The Salt-and-Pepper Viking Beard
If you’re still in the process of going gray, a salt-and-pepper beard can look very handsome. This full mid-length beard benefits from the natural progression, as the mustache and sideburn hair are black while the bottom half of the beard is white. It’s a clean, gently-tapered style that’ll look just as good on the battlefield as it does in the office!
How to Grow Your Viking Beard
Growing out your beard will require a combination of effort and luck. Your age, health, hormones, and genetics will all have an impact on how easily you can grow facial hair. That said, here are some quick tips that’ll set you on the right path:
Get your health in check. For a baseline of good health, make sure to get enough exercise, sleep, and nutritious, high-protein food. Beyond that, you may want to speak to your doctor about any health conditions or concerns you have that might impact your ability to grow facial hair.
Be ready to endure. The process of growing out a beard can be painful at the start. That move from sexy stubble to short, patchy growth over the first few months isn’t the most flattering and it can also get pretty itchy. Be mentally prepared for this, and resist the urge to pick up your razor and give up.
Skincare is beard care. Take good care of the skin under your beard. A little bit of exfoliation and moisturization will help keep some of that itchiness at bay, and it could also help prevent irritating ingrown hairs.
Finally, prepare to style. Once your beard achieves a short but respectable length (this usually takes a month or two), you’ll need to start thinking about how you’ll shape and maintain it. A tiny trim here and there will help get rid of split ends without removing much length, so don’t be afraid to go for it.
Beard Products for Maintaining a Viking Beard
Taking care of your beard requires a few must-have products, and there are also some extra products that are nice to have.
Beard oil is a must. It’s made with oil blends that help to protect and seal the hair cuticle and prevent frizz. They keep your beard feeling soft and moisturized and prevent it from getting frizzy or tangled. Plus, a lot of beard oils smell fantastic.
Beard butter can help moisturize your beard much like beard oil. If it contains wax then it also helps to hold and shape the beard a little bit, making it a phenomenal styling aid. We absolutely adore beard butter in our beard, so check out our favorites.
Beard balm offers more control and styling help than beard butter, while still adding some moisture. It’s great if you want a very clean, smooth-looking beard, although admittedly, that’s not what usually comes to mind when we talk about Viking beards. That said, it can be a great way of giving your beard some shape if you haven’t trimmed in a while.
Beard or mustache wax offers even more control, for a very clean look. Most guys don’t use wax on their beards because it’s too intense, but if you’re cultivating a magnificent mustache then wax can help keep the hair out of your mouth.
A beard comb is a must-have once your beard gets past that medium-length stage. It’ll help you keep your beard looking neat but not over-styled and it’ll prevent tangles that lead to hair breakage. It will also come in handy when you shape your beard.
A beard trimmer is another must-have (unless you’re very comfortable with scissors). Smaller trimmers will help you clean the outline of your beard, while larger ones will help you shape your beard in a flattering style. Hair clippers are also great for the job, especially if your beard is very long and dense. If you’d rather keep it old-school, beard scissors can work, too.
Beard straightener is a hot styling tool that’ll help you smooth out curly or wavy beard hair. It’s not a must, but it’s worth picking up if you like some of the straighter Viking beard styles we shared above.
Beard conditioner is a nice treatment that softens your beard in the shower. If you’re not a fan of having oils in your beard, it’s a nice alternative that’ll keep your hair moisturized without necessarily leaving a residue. Some formulas are more like beard butters, which means you leave them on your beard.
Mini elastics are necessary if you plan to braid your glorious Viking beard. If you want to take things even further, you can pick up some hair beads to further decorate your braids.
How to Shape a Long Beard
Once your beard reaches a medium or even long length, you need to start thinking about actually shaping it. A Hagrid beard can be impressive, but most guys want a Viking beard with a bit more structure, so here are some tips.
Consider what shape you actually want. Some guys like a very tapered beard that’s long but pointed, which has a slimming effect on the face. Others like a more squared-off beard, which can have a very powerful, masculine effect. Finally, a rounded beard will look a little softer and more friendly. You can also combine a few elements from each shape to create a beard perfectly tailored to your face shape.
Brush and prep. Start with a clean beard. If you think it’s necessary, you can even wash it if necessary, but make sure to dry it thoroughly after. Then, use your beard brush to detangle and get all hairs going in the same direction.
Shape the sides. Now you can start trimming. Start with the sides, working your way from the top of the beard downwards to remove any hair that grows outside of the shape you had in mind. You can use a comb to help guide you or use a clipper with comb guard attachments.
For a more square beard, simply trim the sides in a straight line, like in the video below:
Here’s how you can achieve a more tapered, ducktail beard:
Refine the bottom. It’s very common for the hairs growing front and center to be a little shorter than the hair growing back towards the neck. Clean up the bottom by trimming starting at the front, and moving your clipper back towards your neck on a slightly upward tilt. This will help avoid having a “neckbeard”.
Brush and fix. Give your beard another brush with the comb, and check in the mirror to see if you achieved the shape you wanted. This is your chance to fix up any unevenness or missed spots.
Create your outline. Now it’s time to refine your outline with the help of a very close-cutting trimmer or even a razor. For a more rugged look, you can just shave all the stubble on your neck that is too short to be part of your beard.
Consider the cheek line. For something a little cleaner and crisper, you can also create a clean cheek line, and then shave the skin outside it very thoroughly. Some guys keep their cheek lines clean but natural, while others opt for sharper lines and a more angular look.
Rinse and style. With our beard shaped and outlined, you’re all done! Rinse your beard to get rid of any stubble, and then style it with the help of your brush and some beard butter or oil. If you really want to go all-out, you can even straighten or blow dry it.
Problems You May Run Into and How to Bash Them with the Hammer of the Gods
The path of the Viking is anything but smooth. Growing a beard is tough, but you’re tougher! Here are the issues you may run into, and how you can deal with them.
Patchy areas are the most common issues for men starting their beard growth journey. Hair doesn’t grow at the same time all at once. Each one of your beard hairs moves through its hair growth cycles at different times, which leads to uneven growth. That’s why the best solution for a patchy beard is patience.
That said, if it’s been months and you still have patchy areas, you may need to consider whether your health or lifestyle might be a hindrance. You can always speak to a doctor about medications, lifestyle changes, or supplements that may improve your beard growth.
Finally, there’s nothing wrong with a bit of cosmetic enhancement! If the Vikings sometimes painted their faces, you can too. You can use a bit of eyeshadow or eyebrow pencil that matches the color of your beard or try hair-building fibers like Toppik to make your beard seem denser.
Split ends or breakage. A brittle beard will not grow long and magnificent. Many aspiring Vikings don’t realize that their beards need a lot of love, just like head hair. If you’re experiencing split ends or breakage then you need to improve your beard care routine.
Make sure to apply beard oil or butter to your growth after every shower and consider using a beard conditioner. If you have a lot of split ends, trimming your beard will actually help prevent future breakage.
Tangles. The smallest tangle can become a huge, painful knot before you know it and the only way to remove it is to cut off the beard you worked so hard to grow.
Don’t let that happen! Get in the habit of combing your beard a few times a week to prevent tangles in the first place. Braiding your beard will also help prevent more tangles from forming.
If you already have a knot, apply a bit of beard oil or conditioner first. Then, run your fingers through your beard to undo large or loose knots. Then, comb your beard, starting from the bottom and then moving the comb up incrementally. Soon enough, your beard will be untangled and unencumbered.
Hair growing in different directions. Each man has a different hair growth pattern, and there are a few ways to deal with it. First, you can just let your beard do its thing. As your beard grows longer, any unusual growth patterns will become less obvious. Another option is to use a strong-hold beard balm to force your beard into shape. Finally, some men choose to straighten or blow dry their beards in order to force their hair to lie flat, which also makes their beards seem longer.
ONWARDS TO VALHALLA!
Viking beards come in different shapes and sizes. Growing one of your own is an exercise in patience, but the reward is a glorious beard. You can modernize your beard through careful shaping or pay homage to the Norse warriors with a few braids. Whatever you choose, keep your chin up so all can admire your magnificent facial hair. Thanks for reading, and have fun storming the castle!
Michael Morris is the head writer here at Rough and Tumble Gentleman. He's got a ducktail beard and loves Brazilian jiu-jitsu. He's married to the woman of his dreams and lives in Brooklyn, NY.