v. To artfully trim a beard or other facial hair.
Auto-topiarising your beard is difficult for the partially sighted man.
—Douglas Walker, “Auto-topiarising,” Twitter, September 13, 2015
William Shakespeare, without his sharply topiarised chin, its pointiness so expressive of wit and intelligence, would have had the face of a balding sheep.
—John Walsh, “What’s all the fuzz about, then? Jeremy Paxman's new beard lights up the Twitterverse,” The Independent (London), August 13, 2013
Poor Edgar Allan Poe. For years he groomed that personality-defining black moustache sitting like a mournful raven on his upper lip. Then along comes John Cusack in The Raven wearing a full-order goatee. Can’t Hollywood get anything right? Cusack looks too handsome, too topiarised.
—Nigel Andrews, “A moral tale — but of the French kind,” The Financial Times, March 08, 2012
1993 (earliest)
Connery, his beard topiarised to a silvery point, bonds Bondishly with Snipes — gunpowder-dry gags and plenty of oneupmanship — but they never quite spark, leaving the film's Eastern promise unfulfilled.
—Quentin Curtis, “It's just a bloody farce: Quentin Tarantino: genius, or gore bore?,” The Independent (London), October 17, 1993
This noun-to-verb conversion of the word topiary — the clipping and trimming of shrubs and other plants into artful shapes (a term that dates to the late 16th century) — has been a consistent member of the gardening lexicon since at least the mid-1950s.