You’ve probably noticed that beards and mustaches have crept into the mainstream in recent years. Since fashion is cyclical, that’s really no surprise.
You might be surprised, however, to learn that official competitions are being held all over the world in which audiences admire those aforementioned, and official judges tally up points to determine winners.
Kind of like a beauty pageant or a dog show, but with facial hair.
One such competition will be taking place in Davis Saturday afternoon. It will be held at the from 3-6:30 p.m., and it will be hosted by a decorated competitive bearding veteran by the name of Justin Vorhauer.
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Vorhauer, who is a bouncer at a bar, is an accomplished competitor: He won best-in-show in Petaluma, first place in Folsom and at the Placer County Fair and second place in LA -- in a variety of categories (which you can read more about below).
Vorhauer, a facial-hair aficionado by most people's standards, has some mixed feelings about the rise popularity.
“I’d be lying if I didn’t say it was my little thing that I like doing,” he said, noting that he’s a member of the local Mustache and Beard Social Club. “But it’s about having a good time – spreading the positive image of people with facial hair rather than the jobless guy on the couch.”
Vorhauer said of mustaches in particular, “The hipster community has definitely embraced the mustache … it’s definitely in right now.”
As for Wednesday’s event: There are currently about 25 competitors who have registered online and more are expected to register at the door -- possibly up to 50.
The cost is $20 to enter and $10 to watch. All proceeds benefit the Yolo Family Resource Center. It’s common for competitive bearding events to benefit charity.
Most categories have to do with beards, but a couple of them are mustache-specific. As for the relationship between the bearded folk and the mustachioed folk, Vorhauer says “there are friendly jabs back and forth,” with lines like, “if you’re a real man you’ll grow a full beard.”
But it’s all in fun, as you’ll see at the G Street Wunderbar on Saturday. Here are some more details, as well as the specific categories. You can like the Mustache and Beard Social Club on Facebook page to follow future events.
Here are the 11 Categories
- Full Beard Natural <10” - Length as measured from lower lip to beard tip. All parts of the beard and moustache must be fully grown. Conditioning, brushing, and combing are the only styling aids allowed, no waxes or hairspray allowed.
- Full Beard Natural >10” - Length as measured from lower lip to beard tip. All parts of the beard and moustache must be fully grown. Conditioning, brushing, and combing are the only styling aids allowed, no waxes or hairspray allowed.
- Full Beard Groomed - This category will represent a well-manicured bearded gentleman. Length is not an issue. All parts of the beard and moustache must be fully grown. The beard should be expertly brushed, trimmed, shaped, and generally maintained, with minimal styling products permitted (light moustache wax, a spritz of hairspray to shape fly-away hairs). Use of heavy styling products will be restricted to the Freestyle category. This category will represent a well-manicured bearded gentleman.
- Whiskerina - Women’s—aye, women are invited to join the party, too—Build-Your-Own category. Let your imagination run wild and use as many arts and crafts as you can fit onto your faces!
- Freestyle (full or partial) - Styling aids only, any decorations or props cannot help with beard support, let your imagination run wild! Note that the contestant will be held accountable for any physical injury to his or herself.
- Moustache natural - Hair grown above the upper lip and below the nose only, with no styling aids allowed. Having a “Soul Patch” does not disqualify from this category.
- Moustache styled - The moustache is the hair that grows on the upper lip but can also include hairs growing from elsewhere on the face that are a natural extension of the shape of the moustache. Therefore Fu Manchus, walruses, and horseshoe styles are all considered mustaches. Styling aids are allowed. No physical styling aids (wire, string, tape, etc.)
- Sideburns/chops - Chin is shaven & hair is optional on the upper lip, light aids allowed (fully styled sideburns should enter in freestyle)
Goatee - Facial hair grown only on the chin or upper/lower lip, moustache is not required, styling aids allowed.
- Business Beard - Short (1 inch or under) beard grown unbroken from temple to temple. Tight, edged, and professional is the look. Light styling aids allowed.
- Partial Beard - Any beard that doesn’t fall within any of the other categories. Whaler, Amish, and Imperial Partial are examples of beards that would fall into this category.