by Marcus Scott
Face it—with the rising trend of men sporting some rather questionable facial hair choices today, the question begs to be asked: Are these men getting laid and if so, how desperate are women becoming?
Cosmopolitan UK reports that 63% of guys believe scruff arouses the ladies, but it appears that temperatures aren’t quite rising in the Great White North. In January, a survey commissioned by Gillette showed that while most Canadian women ages 18-34 identified stubble as ‘masculine and sexy,’ three quarters of women prefer to kiss a smooth or close-shaven mug. On an extreme note, nearly one in four of the fairer sex avoid kissing mates with hirsute.
To get the answer, naturally, I went to Facebook. My friends—all of them between early 20s and mid 30s—had a few opinions of their own about man fur. Everyone had different tastes:
“I want a Rapunzel ass beard. No joke.”
“Not lots, mountain man is kind of a niche taste but some men look great with scruff or neatly kept hair. It’s not so hot for the smoochies. Ouch! Most guys end up looking better with a clean face, at the end of the day.”
“It totally depends on the person. Some people I think look better with facial hair or light scruff, others look better cleanly shaven.”
Though niche, hirsute has a fan base, with fashion designers dropping ‘stache-lovin’ models in their campaigns left and right. MSN.com reports the face bush represents his teenage exhilaration of guys wanting to have it on their face, but they grow insecure if it grows in patches. According to Daily Mail, some guys have followed certain steps to make sure this never happens and in the last year, over 4,500 designer beard transplant procedures occurred in the UK alone. But are these men paying for the wrong ‘do? Different Women have different tastes, right?
Ladies, this is perfect opportunity to call it as you see it: Mutton chops make any man look like a douchebag, no matter how fun or carefree they look. Well, unless he’s Hugh Jackman and he’s playing a major badass like Wolverine.
To grow a beard, or not to grow a beard. That is the question. There’s nothing wrong with sideburns but most women are once again, “meh” about it, like goatees.
Unless he’s 90s teen idol, an art school musician or Colonel Sanders, not many women feel one-way or the other about the soul patch. However, depending on the grooming, this look can be sophisticated, playful or, pun intended, soulful. Apolo Ohno’s make it look so cool, doesn’t he?
‘Sex offender’ is just one of the many things women have said about the pencil ‘stache. And sure, it’s kind of zany. For example, John Waters. Or pictured, Chris Cornell. But depending on the man, it adds quite an interesting touch. Jean Dujardin makes it look smart in “The Artist.”
This is strictly a look for a man with large, engaging eyes. There’s a reason Tom Selleck’s ‘stache is in a league of it own.
“Wait, so you’re not Salvador Dali?!” Well then, if he’s not strongman from the 1800s or a musketeer, he’s probably a Hulk Hogan or a hipster. If he claims he’s not, challenge him to shave it. By all accounts, get him to take it off.
It’s probably raised more existential questions for the face than most evolutionists and surgeons. Seriously, this would be a good reason to pull the ‘It’s not me, it’s you’ card. It’s icky, and comes off like a Brazilian wax… for the face.
Women are very so-so about goatees. Depending on the man and the grooming, he can range from every girl’s best friend to come hither panty dropper.
Does the beard have a mysterious pull over the ladies? Jack Passion, author of The Facial Hair Handbook would liken it to a lion’s lush mane ruling over the savannah. But, no matter how much it suggests alpha male, this is a look that demands elegance. It’s what separates Joaquin Phoenix’s meth chic look and George Clooney’s go-get-‘em-tiger approach.
It’s said that everyone loves Bob Marley. Like Marley, the same can be said with full scruff. It says so many things depending on how the man is dressed: He’s wearing a suit? He’s casual and approachable, but he means business. He’s covered in paint? He’s an artist or he paints houses? Clothes are frayed? He’s homeless.
In the end…
As a man, I never understood. Why risk the common lumberjack-caveman-Viking-pedo associations in the first place? Clean shaven’s the way to go. After all, isn’t a clean-cut and posh business causal face more appealing and more employable? Not according to a survey conducted by finance management company Quicken and the American Mustache Institute. Studies found that guys with mustaches took home 8.2 percent more money than their bearded peers, and 4.3 percent more than smooth, clean-cut guys.
Now, more than ever, as I stare into the bathroom mirror, I am more perplexed than ever. Do I shave the scruff that gives my face dimension but also makes me look a lot older, or go for the face-faced schoolboy look? Inquiring minds would like to know.