Men’s facial hair is a hot topic these days.
Beards, mustaches, stubble, five o’clock shadow… it seems that being clean-shaven is just not that cool anymore.
So, what’s driving this latest bit of hairy manliness? Is it ego, is it a male identity crisis, or is it that all the models in GQ magazine are coated in a perfectly coiffed 1/16” of stubble from their chins to their upper lips to their sideburns. I don’t really know and I only have a limited amount of life history to look back on.
I was born in 1967, so the 1970’s with its big bushy porno star mustaches is the first decade of facial hair that I really have any recollection. The 1980’s, when I was leaving the realm of teenager hood and becoming an adult, seemed to me to be a relatively clean-cut decade with its short, clean-cut business haircuts and preppy clothing. Then the 1990’s rolled in with its Kurt Cobain grunginess and facial hair in all its wild variations started to come back into fashion. Now it’s the 21st century and as I said earlier, men’s facial hair is a hot topic.
So… what do you think… “to beard or not to beard?” That is the question.
Personally, I hate shaving! No, I don’t just hate shaving, I despise shaving. I avoid shaving as much as possible. I limit it to, at most, two to three times a week. That whole “Art of Shaving” branding thing… screw that… shaving is just a pain in the ass. Part of the problem is when I shave I look like I’m about 15 years old for the first 12 hours until a little bit of shadow starts to show up again. So I prefer to keep a few days of stubble on my face. I haven’t broken down enough yet to go out and buy one of those electric razors that allow you to keep that perfect amount of stubble on your face at all times.
But believe me… it’s on the list of things to consider purchasing in life.
I’ve grown a full beard once in my life, back in 2002. My Mom was sick and it was one of those life changing events. They say that Men often grow their beards when they experience a life changing event. So, I let it go for about six weeks at which point the itchiness became so unbearable that I went to a barber shop and had them buzz it off. I was hoping they would do a full soap shave with a straight razor and hot towels, maybe even a glass of whiskey on the side. But they wouldn’t, so I let them buzz it off with one of those electric razors that you cut your dog’s hair with… lame.
So, I guess having a beard is kind of a pain in the ass too.
The circle beard seems to be the beard of choice these days in my part of the world, at least. Many people call it a goatee, but I’ve read that a goatee is actually just the chin part of it and when you add the mustache part, it’s called a circle beard. Whatever… it’s popular, even though in many cases, I think it makes people look scary, especially when combined with a shaved head.
My personal beard preference is the Jesus beard. Yep, I think Jesus had an awesome beard, not too long, not too short, and combined with long flowing hair. You have to have a good chin to have a good Jesus beard. Of course, none of us really know what Jesus really looked like so we go with what we see in paintings of him. But you’ve got to admit, the “Americanized” version of Jesus has a great beard.
Barry Gibb had a good Jesus beard.
The 1970’s era Lindsey Buckingham also had a great Jesus Beard. His hair had a little more of that afro look, but still a great beard.
There are plenty of others, but those few stand out in my mind.
So, what’s the verdict… “to beard or not to beard?” Hairy or smooth? Stubble or clean as a baby’s bottom?
What do you think?
Hairy, inquiring people wanna know!