Opportunity doesn’t knock twice, (especially when you’re at the grocery store), so when Levi Stocke was approached at his neighborhood Ralph’s to become a model, he seized-up the prospect, but initially just for fun. Little did he know, it would not only pave the way for amazing things ahead, but contribute to a movement that’s crushing stereotypes of what male models look like today. “I was in Glendale at Ralph’s, and a casting agent approached asking if I had ever considered modeling. I’m thinking here I am covered in Tattoos with a beard—not your typical model at all—but figured what the hell, it could be a fun experience, and it ended up being so much more!”
Since being scouted, Stocke’s bearded mug has been nearly impossible to miss. Proclaimed by Topman as one of The Most Stylish Guys on Instagram, and seen everywhere from Levi’s fashion ads to the recent Sprint Family Plan TV commercials; his career’s on fire. Originally relocating to LA from Florida to pursue his music, modeling was something he never thought twice about. Although his boldly tattooed and bearded appearance is highly sought after, he admits clients occasionally throw a curve ball, “I do get asked some times if I’d be willing to shave the beard off… and I guess for the right job I’d consider it—but there’d have to some type of shave-off rate! Shaping and trimming is one thing, but removing the face sweater is another—some might consider that nudity!”
While the appearance of bearded men and tattoos in media has become more relevant (and often referred to as a trend), Stocke nods to our bearded roots, “When we think of masculinity, there’s a few things that come to mind, and I think a beard is one of them. Throughout history, men of high stature rocked beards—and they’re still viewed just as mysterious and masculine today. For me, they’re one of the greatest expressions of art and also give a hint as to what’s going on inside.“
Along with dismantling stereotypes in the modeling industry, Stocke is a strong believer in putting out positive energy whenever possible, “doing so can change your life if your heart’s in the right place. Be happy in your own skin, but remember great things happen outside your comfort zone. Try to focus on the bright points in others—we’ve all shared the common thread in trying to find our own way, so it’s important to stay humble.”
In order to juggle a steady work/life balance Stocke shares his daily regimen; “I usually wake up before the sun comes up, drink some coffee and try to get in a run before checking email etc. to plan out my day. If I have the time, I’ll take my motorcycle out if I’m not working on it.”
Being blessed with excellent beard-growing genetics, Stocke explains it took about six months to result with the photogenic masterpiece seen today. His dad is beardless, so Stocke’s grooming regimen has all been self-taught; “I use a good shampoo and conditioner, then I follow up with beard oil after washing—it helps tame the madness.”
While Stocke’s beard is a solid representation of how a handsome appearance is viewed today, to him it serves multiple purpose, “it represents patience and attention to detail; it motivates me to work hard—as strange as that may sound,” he admits.
For other guys who might be unsure if they can grow out a full-beard, follow Stocke’s advice, and “STICK IT OUT. When growing a beard, failure is not an option. Test it out and see what works best for you—and commit!” I’m not fond of quitters,” he confesses.
As Stocke makes his mark in the modeling/acting world, he continues to stay focused while spreading positive energy along the journey. “I’m not sure what the future holds, but I am going to keep working hard and following my passions. I’ve been blessed to see some incredible places, and the people I get to work with (along with the friendships I’ve made) resonate with me the most.”
Not just another rugged gent with handsome looks—his boldly bearded appearance proves you can make a career being exactly who you are without changing a thing. Kudo’s to Stocke for representing the Urban Beardsman style to the fullest, and proving just like pictures, a beard is worth a thousand words.