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Van Dyke Beard Vs Goatee: Mirror Match For GOAT Facial Hair!


The Van Dyke beard and the goatee are some of the world's oldest beard styles that have been popular for decades. These beard styles resemble each other in many ways.

The argument, "Van Dyke beard vs goatee: which one is better?" has dragged on for years!

In fact, some folks believe that they are one and the same. Despite the many similarities between these two pointy beard styles, there are some key differences that make them stand out.

Main Difference Between Van Dyke vs. Goatee

The main difference between Van Dyke vs. goatee are:

  • Van Dyke includes a mustache, whereas a goatee only covers your chin.
  • Van Dyke includes the hair on the sides, whereas a goatee doesn't include the hair on the sides and cheeks.
  • Van Dyke doesn't feature connecting hair between the chin hair and the mustache, whereas a goatee has connecting hair.
  • Van Dyke is stylish and expensive to maintain, whereas the goatee is affordable and easy to maintain.

Goatee vs. Van Dyke: What Is the Difference?

Little girl asking "what?"

The joy of every young man when going through puberty is discovering that they can grow some facial hair. But with time, you realize that shaving and maintaining tiny facial hair can be never-ending chores that most folks don't like. On the other hand, you can have fun with your facial hair by trying classic facial hairstyles like a goatee or Van Dyke style.

These styles have grown in popularity for the last few decades; unfortunately, they're quite similar, and most folks don't know if they are sporting a Van Dyke or goatee. If you want to know the difference between the goatee and Van Dyke, then please read on.

What Is a Van Dyke Beard Style?

Generally, Van Dyke refers to any beard style where the mustache doesn't connect with the goatee. But the style and size of your goatee and mustache will depend on you. You can have a short mustache or a full one, and your Van Dyke goatee can cover your chin, or you can shave it and leave a strip of beard on the chin and a soul patch (a small quantity of hair below your lip).

Van Dyke Beard Style

The main difference between the Van Dyke and the goatee is the separation between the goatee and mustache, irrespective of the style and shape. This style became popular during the seventeenth century when Anthony Van Dyke sported this look together with his models.

During the seventeenth century, they shaped the mustache by simply twisting the ends upwards, with the goatee being twisted to a sharp point.

The van Dyke is sometimes referred to as a "Charlie" because King Charles I sat for Van Dyke's portrait. Therefore, if you plan on getting a Van Dyke, you should try the different styles available. Most men usually prefer clean-shaven sideburns and cheeks with their Van Dyke, but the modern trends have changed the classic look.

This style can be very different for anyone willing to style up the goatee and mustache to a perfectly groomed cut. The Van Dyke had disappeared, but thanks to some celebrities like David Beckham, Pierce Brosnan, and Johnny Depp, who have been seen sporting this beard style, it has started trending again.

What is a Goatee?

The goatee is an exceptional beard style that dates back to old times and until the twentieth century. It was referred to as a beard on the chin and no mustache, with the other parts of the face clean-shaved. The goatee was trendy in the 1940s, 90s, and 60s, but since the Corona pandemic hit the world, most facial hairstyles have made a comeback, and this includes the goatee.

Currently, a goatee refers to the hair on your chin, and it doesn't necessarily include a mustache.

But if you have a mustache, you can connect it with the chin hair to create a full goatee. You can also include a soul patch if you want one, but it's not mandatory.

In fact, the Oxford Dictionary describes a goatee as a pointed beard that grows on your chin only. This style resembles the small-pointed beard on goats, hence the name goatee. Remember, the length of the chin, hair, and mustache will vary with individuals.

The classic goatee has been a beard style for rebels and rockstars who made it popular in the last few decades with the Alt-rock groups (the 1990s), hippies (60s), and beatniks (40s). Currently, this clean shaved classic goatee is loved by everyone, from athletes to professors, and it has evolved over the years. Some of the most common goatee beard styles include:

1. The Landing Strip

Landing Strip

This goatee style includes a sole hair patch directly below your lower lip. The sole patch can be either 2 or 3 inches wide and extend vertically to the end of your chin.

The landing strip covers the chin length and is quite low maintenance; all you have to do is regularly shave around it; plus, you don't have to comb it since it's short.

2. The Pure Goatee

The Pure Goatee

The pure goatee refers to the ancient time goatee, which featured a beard on your chin only.

It refers to a small patch of hair on your chin that grows lower from the bottom lip to the end of the chin.

3. The Circle Beard

The Circle Beard

The circle beard, also known as a classic or full goatee, is when you include a mustache that extends downwards and connects with the goatee covering the chin region.

4. The Pretty Boy

The Pretty Boy

The pretty boy resembles the circle beard, but the goatee and mustache are usually trimmed to create a thin line that outlines the chin and mouth.

5. The Anchor

The Anchor

This goatee gets its name from the fact that it resembles an anchor. It includes a wide goatee, soul patch, and mustache. The goatee extends beyond the chin region.

6. The Balbo

The Balbo

Originally worn by Italo Balbo, this type of goatee resembles the anchor in several ways. But the only difference between the two is that with Balbo, the goatee region is thicker and stretches towards the sideburns.

Goatee vs. Van Dyke Beard: What to Consider When Picking the Beard Style?

When picking between the two, there are a few factors you have to consider; after all, they are not meant for everyone. Some of the things to consider include:

1. The Shape of the Face

Facial Shape for Beards or Goatees

Not all beard styles work for everyone; therefore, you should pick a facial hairstyle that compliments your face.

Luckily, Van Dyke and the goatee can work with several facial shapes, and they aren't restricted to one shape.

But you may have to tweak them to fit your facial features perfectly. For example, a circle beard can help lengthen a square face, while a Van Dyke accentuates the chin of anyone with a circular face.

2. The Growth Pattern of Your Facial Hair

Growth Pattern of Your Facial Hair

Most folks suffer from patchy hair growth, while some cannot grow a full beard. Luckily, Van Dyke is ideal for these folks since the soul patch and goatee are not connected to the mustache. Plus, with some clean lines, you can easily hide this problem.

Folks with this patchy beard should avoid certain goatee styles, including Balbo and circle beards which require an even hair distribution.

3. Chin Type

Chin Type-
Two different types of chin: normally prominent (A) or somewhat flatter chin and a type of prominent chin (B).
Normally prominent (A) or somewhat flatter chin and a type of prominent chin (B)

Guys with a pointed or weak chin can use beards to improve the contour of their faces. For example, if you have a weak chin, you can use a longer goatee to define your jawline while creating an illusion of a powerful chin. On the other hand, you can also hide your pointed chin with a wider goatee like Balbo and anchor beard styles.   

Dapper Point: There are instances when beards are mistaken for goatees. Know what sets these two apart by reading our comparative article here -- Goatee Vs Beard.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Chin Beard Longer for Van Dyke Than Goatee?

Yes. The length of the chin beard will depend on your preference but you have to make sure that the chin beard is longer than the other facial hair. Some goatee styles like the landing strip, however, require a shorter chin beard than Van Dyke.

Is Van Dyke a Goatee Style?

No, it's not. Goatee and Van Dyke have many similarities, but they're not the same. The Van Dyke features a goatee with a disconnected mustache. The Van Dyke was popularized by a Flemish painter known as Sir Van Dyck in the seventeenth century.

Are Goatees Still Popular?

Yes, the goatee is one of the few facial hairstyles that has been trending for the last few decades, thanks to the many celebrities who love this style. In fact, this is one of the few classic facial hairstyles that can leave you looking suave and stylish. But make sure you pick the right goatee style that complements your chin.


The Van Dyke and the goatee are popular facial hairstyles with lots of similarities that have been trending for decades. In fact, the main difference between the two is that with Van Dyke you don't have to connect the chin hair and the mustache. These styles can enhance the facial features of most guys and even the ones with patchy beards.

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