Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Beards: They grow on you

By Tappan Parker

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Winter break is almost upon us. The leaves are gone, the snow will soon be falling and baby, its freaking cold outside. So what do you do? Your face will still be left wide open to the chilly winter winds dedicated to making your walks to class absolute misery. The answer? You can be a man, and grow a beard.

Facial hair has been growing on men, wizards, lumberjacks and in rare cases some women, since the dawn of time. It is the ultimate face warmer and many great beards have inspired nations to follow behind them.

According to psychologist Robert J. Pellegrini “…the male beard communicates a heroic image of the independent, sturdy, and resourceful pioneer, ready, willing and able to do manly things.”

Clearly, the beard is a statement to be reckoned with. But one cannot just haphazardly grow a beard. It must be cared for, trimmed and styled to truly get across the statement that the beard makes for the individual.

Take the famous beard of Abraham Lincoln as an example. He wore a thick chinstrap along with his top hat, becoming the first bearded president of the United States. The chinstrap manages to keep its wearer warm while simultaneously framing the rest of the face.

The chinstrap is one of the easiest of all beards to grow as even people with hair that does not grow as well as they would like can probably grow a chinstrap. If you have trouble growing a full beard, the chinstrap may be for you.

The moustache is probably the hardest piece of facial hair to pull off well. The moustache is a very minimalist approach to facial hair, growing hair only on the upper lip, which arguably gets the coldest around wintertime. Many famous people have given support to the moustache, such as Salvador Dali, Groucho Marx, Josef Stalin and Albert Einstein. Each has grown their own distinct moustache, sometimes thick, sometimes pencil thin. When grown correctly the moustache can make one look distinct and manly.

The moustache can be styled in many different ways. For instance there is the pencil moustache, a straight line of hair across the upper lip. Hulk Hogan is known for his handlebar moustache, the moustache that hangs down from the upper lip to the lower jaw. Then there is the moustache than many may call the Borat, the thick upper lip moustache that is commonly associated with distinguished men around the world.

Protect your upper lip. Grow a moustache.

You may also know of the civil war moustache or the moustache that is connected to a pair of mutton chops. Mutton chops are a chin strap that has not been connected, often covering most of the cheeks. The civil war moustache connects a pair of mutton chops to a moustache, creating an old-fashioned look that is hard to replicate.

If you have grown facial hair before, you have probably considered growing a goatee. The goatee is a moustache that is grown alongside a chin beard, a beard purely grown on the chin. It is a more modern look, often worn by rock stars or movie stars such as Johnny Depp and Orlando Bloom. Connecting the moustache and the chin beard is optional for goatee growers and can create a completely different look depending on what you are going for. If you are going for a look which exudes modern style, the goatee is something to look into.

Look in a mirror. There is a good chance that if you decided to do work instead of shave this week that you have some scruff coming in. This can be known as the 5 o’clock shadow, or as the hobo down the street. The scruff is characterized by stubbly facial hair and is popular among college students with little sleep, the homeless, and some actors. Most of you are probably familiar with scruff around this time of year.

But the most epic of all beards is the full beard. You may have seen full beards on such celebrities as Chuck Norris, Conan O’Brien and two of the three members of ZZ Top. Lumberjacks are also known for wearing full beards. It is possible to stylize the full beard in many different ways in order to create a unique look. No two beards look alike. The full beard is the only beard capable of keeping the entire face warm. It exudes a sense of style, confidence and most importantly manliness.

The beard is man’s most effective defense against the cold winter chills. Growing a beard is the best way to protect your face, and with the many options available to you, it is always possible to grow fashionable facial hair.

Tappan Parker can be reached at [email protected]

2 Comments

2 Responses to “Beards: They grow on you”

  1. Dwayne McKnight on December 8th, 2010 2:43 am

    Best.
    Article.
    Ever.

  2. a girl on December 8th, 2010 12:37 pm

    I highly recommend not growing a mustache or you may be mistaken for a pedophile.

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