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Thirteen things that you didn’t know about facial hair.

March 07, 2013 | Scott


Beards are big at Balcony Shirts so here are a few facial follicle facts to go with our ‘Beard Lover – Facial Hair Admiration’ and ‘With Great Moustache Comes Great Responsibility’ t-shirts :-


– The earliest known example of a moustache is in a portrait of an ancient Iranian horseman from 300 BC.

– The World Beard And Moustache Championships take place every two years. When Elmar Weisser won the full beard freestyle division in the 2005 competition in Berlin his beard looked like The Brandenburg Gates; two years later in England it looked like Tower Bridge.

– According to an old and still unrepealed law in Massachusetts USA it’s illegal to have a goatee beard without a licence.
Yes, I thought that I might have read that wrong or that it was supposed to say ‘goat’, but incredibly it’s true!

– Many of Liverpool F.C. players in the ’70s and ’80s wore moustaches – this along with the characters Barry Grant and Terry Sullivan from the soap opera ‘Brookside’ inspired the ‘Scousers’ characters in ‘The Harry Enfield Television Programme’.

– Every year at The Bearded Theory music festival in Derbyshire an attempt is made to break the World Record for the number of people wearing false beards in one place. And, perhaps unsurprisingly, every year they succeed.

– Mark Spitz won seven gold medals at the 1972 Olympic Games whilst wearing a moustache, a rarity among sportsman at the time. He claimed that it deflected the water away from his mouth allowing him to go faster.

– ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons and bassist Dusty Hill both have trademark chest-length beards. The band’s clean-shaven drummer is called Frank Beard. You couldn’t make that up could you?

– The Handlebar Club was founded in London in 1947 – qualification for membership is  ‘a hirsute appendage of the upper lip, with graspable extremities’.

– Many of the players in The American and Canadian National Hockey League don’t shave during the Stanley Cup play-offs, as they believe that the resulting ‘playoff beard’ brings good luck. Bjorn Borg used a similar tactic at The Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships – it seemed to work as he won the title five years in a row.

– Salvador Dali published a book consisting entirely of photographs of his moustache called, you’ve guessed it, ‘Dali’s Mustache’. Incidentally that’s not a mistake, it’s the American spelling.

– In 1705 Emperor Peter 1st of Russia introduced a beard tax as part of a series of Government reforms in an attempt to modernise the country by getting everyone to shave. Those who paid the tax had to carry a beard token bearing the words ‘the beard is a superfluous burden’. And before that back in 1535, King Henry VIII of England had taxed beards with the amount paid varying according the wearer’s social position – so does that mean that that King himself paid the highest amount?

– When Sparks performed ‘This Town Ain’t Big Enough For The Both Of Us’ on BBC TV’s ‘Top Of The Pops’ in 1974 John Lennon saw keyboard player Ron Mael’s pencil moustache and exclaimed ‘Christ, they’ve got Hitler on the telly!’

Well I’ve just spent the last ten minutes trying to think of a funny way to end this posting, but can’t come up with anything – after all, it doesn’t get much cooler than a beard that looks like Tower Bridge does it? Hair today, and tomorrow…


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