With everything from ‘Beard Bro’ to #beardstagram hitting the headlines over the past few years, what is clear is that beards are here to stay. As you can imagine we are pretty happy about that as we believe there aren’t many things in the world greater than beards. Now something that might be is this list of Hip Hop’s greatest beards. We love Hip Hop enough as it is, but throw beards into the mix as well…
With this in mind we have been sending out samples of our black pepper & sandalwood beard oil and beard wash to Hip Hop artists all across the United States of America, just to thank them for the great music they continue to put out, year after year. Who know’s what could come of it, all we can say for now is watch this space…
The men behind these beards are pretty talented – so the beards they are sporting are also pretty impressive, here is our selection:
Corey Woods, better known by the stage name Raekwon, is an American rapper and a member of the Wu-Tang Clan. He released his solo debut, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… in 1995, and has since recorded numerous solo albums, as well as continuing to work with Wu-Tang and providing an extensive number of guest contributions to other hip hop artists’ works. He is the founder of his own label ICEH20 Records and has been sighted as a pioneer of Mafioso Rap. A strong but subtle beard, Raekwon was always going to make it on to our list.
Another Cory. Cory McKay, better known by his stage name Cormega, is an American rapper, songwriter and poet. His first musical debut was sparked by a shout-out from Nas on his song “One Love”, from the critically acclaimed Illmatic album during Cormega’s time in prison.. During his younger years in Hip Hop, Cormega wasn’t known for his beard – but today he sports quite the well kept number.
Jeru The Damaja
Kendrick Jeru Davis, known as Jeru the Damaja, is an American rapper best known for his 1994 debut album, The Sun Rises in the East, ranked as one of the 100 greatest hip-hop albums of all time by the editors of About.com. He has worked extensively with Guru and DJ Premier of Gang Starr, whom he has known since he was in high school. He’s sporting a short at the sides, long at the bottom, sort of beard these days. He could certainly benefit from a little beard oil now and then…
Lord Finesse (born Robert Hall Jr.) is a hip-hop artist and producer, from The Bronx, New York, best known as the leader of the D.I.T.C. crew. About.com ranked him number 29 on its list of the Top-50 Hip-Hop Producers. Lord Finesse has one of the strongest beards in Hip Hop and it is clear to see why the name comes from. The finesse in that beard is exceptional…
Dennis Coles better known by his stage name Ghostface Killah, is an American rapper and member of the Wu-Tang Clan. After the group achieved breakthrough success in the aftermath of Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), the members went on to pursue solo careers to varying levels of success. Ghostface Killah debuted his solo-career with Ironman in 1996, which was well received by music critics and he went on to have much more success. Another strong but subtle beard, Ghostface has gone for the short and trimmed top and clean neck. Not everyone can pull this off but then again we wouldn’t be the one to tell them if they hadn’t – not with a name like Ghostface Killah…
James Campbell, better known by his stage names Freddie Foxxx and Bumpy Knuckles, is an American rapper and music producer from Long Island, New York. We have just realised a lot of this list is East Coast! Having worked with big names the likes of Gang Starr, M.O.P and Naughty By Nature, Bumpy Knuckles is a well respected head in the world of Hip Hop. This man has always had a strong moustache and goatee game – although his beard like most of these guys varies year on year.
Frontman of industrial rap group Death Grips, MC Ride could pass for a thinner yet equally terrifying version of street brawler Kimbo Slice. His thick, unkempt beard complements the tattoos covering his body as well as the band’s cryptic lyrics which frequently require his jaws to call out.
One of the original West Coast gangster rappers, Ice Cube has been rocking some form of facial hair or another for the better part of 20 years. Always kept relatively trim, the iconic Compton rapper has had beards of all lengths and sizes appropriate for both the thugs of southside LA and those watching him on TBS from the safety of their home.
The drummer behind some of hip-hop’s most soulful beats also happens to have one of the most recognisable facial silhouettes in the industry. ?uestlove’s curly, stocky beard seems to be an extension of his afro creating a seamlessly integrated head full of hair.
Victor Vazquez, also known as Kool A.D. from the white guilt art project Das Racist, has been growing some of the game’s gnarliest beards since the group first came onto the scene with the bizarre, “Combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell.” The Oakland native has had beards of various lengths and sizes, letting the hair grow well up into the high-cheekbone area dangerously close to his equally-thick eyebrows.
The Chicago rapper is so well-known for his beard that it was considered news-worthy when he decided to shave it for his role in the film New Year’s Eve. No worries though as the film has long been forgotten and the beard is back and as glorious as ever.
Despite a setback to his gangster image when he was outed as a former correctional officer, Rick Ross has managed to literally become a boss by founding the succesful record label Maybach Music Group. It’s hard to even imagine the Miami rapper without his signature beard as it strikes the perfect balance between thickness and tidiness.
The Philly native is as well-known for his full neck beard as he is his stint with Roc-A-Fella Records. Like rapper Stalley, Freeway is a practising Muslim and keeps his beard out of faith. His new album Diamond in the Ruff drops next month and his beard will without doubt be right there with it.
Before joining the heat of the rap game, Action Bronson was a respected fire-flame gourmet chef in New York City. His signature red beard is as much a part of him as food is to his rhymes and although he’s newer to the scene with respect to others on this list, his vibrant beard and jovial manner set him a cut above the rest.
This guy’s beard is so well looked after that he wrote an article advising others on the best ways to maintain your beard in GQ. When searching for the best beards in Hip-Hop we came across this article and it’s pretty cool, although he could do with some beard oil for that frizz.