soul patchThere’s so much to be said about such a small piece of facial hair. But the soul patch – which simply is a cluster of hair beneath your chin – generates quite a reaction: people either love it, hate it, wish it would go away, or just like the fact that it’s facial hair without much of an effort.

The soul patch also has a rich history. Its roots can be traced at least as far back as the 1940s when beatniks and jazz aficionados roamed the earth (or least the United States). Jazz musician Dizzy Gillespie made the style famous – so much so that it was called a “Dizzy Gillespie Beard” – but the soul patch went into hibernation for decades until re-emerging in the late 20th century.

Then came actor Luke Perry and his soul patch in “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” as well as athletes Apolo Ohno and Mike Piazza. Soon, the soul patch was, somewhat, back in style, although only a small percentage of men wear it to this day.

What it Says About You

If you wear a soul patch, you’re probably a bit off-beat. Again, it was a popular style among beatniks and hippies in the 1950s and 60s, and it certainly conveys that you have a laid-back attitude toward life. In some circles, it is seen as “training wheels” for a full beard.

What Face Shape Best Fits the Soul Patch?

The soul patch works with more facial shapes. If you have a round face, however, it will give you a more elongated look.

How to Grow the Soul Patch

It should originate just below your lower lip, so leave a tiny space where your lower lip ends and your soul patch begins. But the rest of your face – neck, cheeks, the rest of your chin – should be clean-shaven. The length and width of the soul patch are up to you, although you don’t want to let it grow too much and morph into something entirely different. Make sure always to keep the edges neatly trimmed.

Here’s a video that further explains the art of growing a soul patch.

What Famous People Wear the Soul Patch

Actor Kevin Costner is among those who’ve worn the soul patch, while the late, great blue guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan also wore it.

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