Tony Masciangelo is one of the baddest beards working in the fashion industry to date. A superstar hair and makeup professional, Tony has pulled at the finest locks from Canadian supermodels Daria, Jessica Stam and Coco Rocha, to industry mainstays Heather Marks and Lisa Cant. When people aren’t admiring his work in Vanity Fair and Flare (to name a couple), they are fascinated by his sometimes short-sometimes long beard accessory. While you may not see him outside of a basic black wardrobe, there is a science to his style. Tony likes to keep things quiet. He lets his beard do the talking.
Name: Tony Masciangelo
Occupation: Hair and Make-up professional + owner of The Alcorn Salon (1222 Yonge St., 416-961-6097)
City: Toronto, Canada
Are you a grower or a show-er? Are you the type of guy who has always had a beard, or is your growth a response to a trend?
I’m a grower and a show-er, but mainly a show-er. If my hair is really short, then I keep my beard short as well. I’ll let my beard fill out when my hair gets longer. I have – pretty much – always had a beard. I experimented with a stache & goatee but I prefer a beard. It’s way less fussy. (Editor’s note: Thank goodness! Goatees are not a good choice for anyone)
Do you keep it neat and clean, or is a little unkempt more your style?
I usually keep it neat and clean but I always let it get unkempt when I’m on holiday (which these days seems like never).
Does your beard ever factor in to the clothes you choose to wear? Do you like to frame it as your statement, rather than wear bold patterns, graphics and colours to distract from it?
My beard is a big factor when I choose clothes. I am a jeans & t-shirt kind of guy and I’m always in black. I keep it simple because I have a fair bit of ink. So, with the beard and the tatts going on I prefer to keep my look quiet.
Does facial hair suit everyone? If you weren’t fully bearded, would you sport a ‘stache?
I don’t think facial hair looks great on everyone but a bit of stubble never hurts. I’ve worn a stache before but every time I looked at myself in the mirror I thought I looked like a Portuguese porn star. It was bad on me. I couldn’t do it.
How would you classify your style?
I’d classify my style as basic meets Rock ‘n’ Roll.
What do you think about bearded, less-standardized models on the runways of Yohji Yamamoto, Vivienne Westwood, Walter Van Beirendonck? Can high fashion be showcased in this way?
I think it’s amazing that fashion is using less standardized models. When I’m doing hair or make-up for a magazine, I’m aware that the looks are not always super wearable. They have an editorial or creative spin on them and I always hope that there is one courageous woman out there that might actually wear it. The same goes for fashion. It’s great to see guys on the runway that actually look like a “Yohji” customer. It makes fashion more relevant in my opinion.
Name one item you will never part with from your wardrobe
I would never part with a vintage leather biker jacket. I’ve owned it for 20 years and it was already super vintage when I bought it. It is so old and worn out in all the right places. It’s perfect!!!
Any advice to those gents out there who may want to achieve a beard like yours?
My advice in keeping a beard like mine is to always take the beard down to the same length of the hair it’s fading into. That way it all grows out smoothly. (Note: Since Tony is a hair professional, I thought it would be silly not to ask him what he uses to condition his beard. Tony uses Nexxus’ Humectress Conditioner twice a week applied to the surface of the beard. Tony says, “it is amazing how many people comment on how soft my beard is.”)
And just for fun, here is an example of Tony’s work, featuring Jessica Stam.
Lede photo by Max Abadian (also present in the photo (right))