• Brad Pitt, the poster-boy for facial hair fashionistas, recently shaved off his beard. Some celebrity fashion experts have mused over its purpose as a trend, disguise best beard oilor a sign of maturing, among others. At some point in any man's life, it's likely he will have to shave off a rather sizable growth. It may not be of Pitt proportions, but most men try the growing experiment sooner or later, even if it's just to see if they can or if they look like their dads.

    Naturally, Angelina's husband popped along to his local celebrity barber to get his appearance ready for the filming of his new film Moneyball. After several seasons of combing and trimming to cultivate the perfect shape, there's likely to be a substantial amount of hair to get rid of, for those who plan to follow Mr Pitt's example. It is likely that most men will be tackling theirs without the aid of an A-list barber, too. Where, oh where, does one start?

    First, remember to be gentle. Under all that hair is tender skin that might not have seen the light of day for several weeks, months or even years. The idea reaction to achieve from this new look is not the classic Bloody-Tissue-Stuck-To-Chin-Recoil, but the Whoah-Look-At-That-Handsome-Brute-Open Mouth, perhaps followed by Hi-There-Wink.

    Secondly, before embarking upon this rite of passage, what are the right tools? No man should, under any circumstances, make this a spur of the moment change, as this could lead to the next no-no, which is never to use a girlfriend's/wife's/sister's shaving equipment. Women's products are for underarms and legs - not exactly Zirh shaving products, one range specifically tailored to men's skincare.

    The tool basics include: a razor with a new blade, obviously; shaving cream, foam or oil; a sharp pair of scissors; and a comb, or a beard trimmer to cut back the beard as far as possible prior to actually shaving. Technically, it can end here, but there's more to the idea of the transition from bearded one to baby face - with the latter term being quite important, actually. Let's go back to that tender skin beneath the beard that has not seen sunlight or felt the touch of metal for a long time and ask some serious questions.

    Is aftershave balm, cold water or a moisturiser part of the plan? Does the shaver need to prepare his skin with a pre-shave product, and what skin type does he have? Does he know what to do if he finds an ingrowing hair? Perhaps he is looking for products that are ethical, at the cutting-edge of shaving technology, value for money or with natural ingredients? The keyword to any best beard oil good shave is preparation, products, patience and practice. And remembering the warning about not using other people's razors.

    Official stockists of the complete Zirh men's skin care range. Create a luxury male grooming regime tailored by Zirh, the experts in skin care for men.