We know it might seem a little overwhelming choosing a Tier for your Santa beard, so we’ve put together a short guide to help you!

The differences between the four tiers are related to the size, density, length and overall scale of the beard, not how it is styled (ie, wavy, curly or straighter).

Our Style Guide has visual options for wig, beard and mustache styles. It’s a great tool to help you decide what “look” you want no matter which Tier you choose.

You can have almost any style of mustache with any Tier of beard and you can have a short wig with a longer beard, or vice versa.

Wigs aren’t grouped by tier, they are categorized as short, long and extra long. Generally, any tier of beard can be worn with any length of wig.

How do I know which Tier is right for me?

Most Santas select their Tier for aesthetic reasons. They want a long and full beard or they want a short, realistic beard, for example.

But one factor to keep in  mind is your height and frame size.  The same Tier 2 beard will have a different proportional appearance on a Santa who is 5’8 versus one who is 6’2.  Larger, taller Santas may want to consider a larger Tier to ensure the proportion of their pieces is consistent with their goals.

Face shape and size will also affect how a beard looks. Your beard will be tailored to fit your face. That means someone with a wider face or a longer chin, will have a beard with more surface area, and therefore more hairs, than someone with a narrower face or shorter chin. Someone with a narrower face or shorter chin might want to size up a tier to make sure their beard is as full as they desire. 

The most important thing to remember is that there is no wrong choice. All four tiers are great,  it’s just a matter of how you envision your beard and how the size and scale relate to your goals. The rest of this page has more information about each Tier and lots of photo examples. If you’re not sure which Tier will best meet your needs, let us know and we’ll be happy to talk with you and help you decide. 

a black and white graphic chart comparing the four custom wig and beard tiers

Tier 1 Santa Beards 

Length: Tier 1 beards can be as short as 3″ and as long as 8″, depending on the style. Curly or wavy beards will be shorter than straight beards.

Tier 1 beards are the smallest scale we create. The beards are similar to the length and fullness a Santa might grow naturally.  A Tier 1 beard is the perfect choice for a Santa who wants a beard that is very realistic in scale or that is a close match for his own whiskers.  

Edmund Glenn’s beard in Miracle on 34th Street is one great example of the general look and feel of a Tier 1 beard. 

Tier 1 might be right for you if any of these apply

  • you want a beard that’s nicely filled out but not long enough to rest on your chest or cover your entire throat
  • you are a real-bearded Santa who wants a glue-on beard that is a close match to his whiskers
  • you prefer whiskers with very natural, realistic appearance and texture
  • you like the look of beards like Edmund Gwenn’s – full, with a coarser texture and defined shape

Tier 1 beards are available in the widest range of hair textures. Beard can be made in white or gray.

Some examples of Tier 1 beards

Some of our Santas wearing their Tier 1 beards

Tier 2 Santa Beards

Tier 2 beards are longer and fuller than Tier 1, often just touching the chest, though that will vary depending on Santa’s height and build. A Tier 2 beard will be 10″-12″ from under the lower lip to the longest point, depending on the style.

Beards with lots of curls will appear shorter and fuller than beards that are straighter. 

Tier 2 might be right for you if any of these apply

  • you want your beard to rest right above or just touch your chest or fur collar and cover most or all of your throat
  • you like a fuller, longer beard that still seems possible for Santa to have grown (we call this scale ‘Magical Realism’)
  • you want a beard that appears longer and you are under 5’7″

A Tier 2 beard can be styled in a many ways – see our Style Guide for some options.

A few examples of Tier 2 beards

Here are some of our Santa clients wearing Tier 2 beards:

Tier 2.5 Santa Beards

This is a newer category, based on feedback from our clients. Although it’s the most recent addition, it’s our most popular tier.

If you like the general look and scale of our Tier 2 sets, but want a little more length and a little more volume, then 2.5 is your Tier! Beards in this Tier are around 12″-14″ long when measured from under the lower lip to the longest point. In addition to being longer than a Tier 2 beard, they have a little more hair.

Curlier styles will appear shorter than straighter styles but they’ll also look fuller. 

A Tier 2.5 beard is also a great choice for taller Santas who like the look of a Tier 2 beard and wants a similar proportion.

Tier 2.5 might be right for you if:

  • you want a very full beard that isn’t as long as a Tier 3
  • you want like the look of our Tier 2 beards, but you are over 6’2 or have a large build
  • you want your wig hair and your beard hair to form a continuous “mane” that frames out your face (pair with a Long or Extra Long wig)

The photos below are all Tier 2.5 beards in a variety of styles.  See our Style Guide for some of the options. 

Here are some of our Santa clients wearing Tier 2.5 beards

Tier 3 Santa Beards 

Tier 3 is for Santas who want a very long or very full beard.  This is the tier for Santas who want something similar in scale to the Charles W. Howard yak sets or a traditional Father Christmas look. A Tier 3 beard can be the same length (approximately) as a Tier 2 or 2.5 beard but significantly fuller OR it can be both longer AND fuller.

Depending on how a Tier 3 beard is styled, the length will be around 15″-17″, measured from under the lower lip. There is substantially more hair in the beard when compared to a Tier 2.5.

Tier 3 Characteristics

Tier 3 is the most open-ended of the three Tiers simply because there are so many different large scale looks. If you know you want a large beard, you’ll be happy you picked a Tier 3.

We also recommend Tier 3 for Santas who are very tall or who have a large build, if they wish to have a beard that appears proportionally longer or fuller.

 

 

Below are some examples of  Tier 3 beards, most are paired with Extra Long Wigs. Each pair shows the front and side view of the same beard. 

Here’s a few of our Santa’s wearing Tier 3 beards

What about a beard like Tim Allen’s or Kurt Russell’s? Or something like the Coke Santa? What Tier would those beards be?

That’s a great question! The beards worn in The Santa Clause and Christmas Chronicles are iconic and neither of them align neatly into our existing Tier structure. For that reason, beards inspired by those looks are simply offered as standalone options, since the length, density, shape and style is very specific. You can just select those options on the order form.

For a beard like the classic Coca Cola Santa, choose a Tier 2 in Style #4.

Above, Santa Simon wearing the Christmas Chronicles inspired wig, beard and mustache he ordered. On the left, the pieces at our studio.

None of the Tiers seem to match with what I want. Are there other options?

Absolutely! Email us a photo or photos that show the beard(s) you like. We’ll use those to create and style your beard.

Beard Fullness/Curliness vs. Length

An important thing to know, especially about Tier 2.5 and Tier 3 beards, is that the more curl a beard has, the more length is “eaten up”. That’s not to say you can’t have a long and full, curly beard. It’s just that there’s an intersection where the length and fullness meet. After that, a choice will need to be made to prioritize  length or curliness/waviness/fluffiness.

A great way to understand this is to look at these two Tier 3 beards. Both are made from the same length of hair but once they’re styled, the finished length is very different. 

If you’re still not sure which scale will suit you best, consider going for a Tier 2 or 2.5. It’s easy to trim and restyle a set to be smaller in scale, but much more challenging to make it larger later. 

And keep in mind that while the construction of each tier is consistent, the size of the Santa wearing the beard can affect how full or long a beard looks. The same Tier 3 beard may look quite different proportionally if worn by a Santa who is 5’8 and a Santa who is 6’4.

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