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William Shakespeare was an English poet, playwright, and actor, who is widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world’s pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet, and the “Bard of Avon.” 2016 was the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death.

He that hath a beard is more than a youth, and he that hath no beard is less than a man.

William Shakespeare

400

QUADRICENTENNIAL

What’s So Special About Beards?

 

Facial hair has a presence all its own. Its design is genetics in action. Its character adorns the man who possesses it. In whatever shape, size or color, facial hair is a man’s distinctive mark in the world which gives the mental imprint of a person's individual nature. If the Beard were an accessory (speaking in allegory), it would be the form of art affixed to a face which gives the man a memorable and unmistakable imprint on the onlooker's brain.

 

Of course, beards are not an “add-on” as one is formed from within a man's own being; from an infant the timing and growth of one's facial hair signals the boy is now a man, and the man is now a figure of adult maturity. A man’s beard is his complete transformation to his genetic imprint. Thereby his whiskers are the reveal of who he is as male as flowers are to plants, distinguished by their uniqueness. This is the allure of what makes bearded men attractive.

Your Beard and the Changing of Seasons

 

Bill Alley, Broadcast Host, Producer & Beard Advocate

 

I come from hearty New England stock. We experience some of the coldest and hottest of days in any calendar year, with ranges from the minus teens to 100-plus heat with near equal humidity (in Fahrenheit). I also come with 28 years of full bearded pedigree, so every year and in every kind of climate the beard has been a “best pal” in keeping this face warm in winter and cool in summer.

 

As a newly arrived Texas transplant, the whiskers got an extra month-plus of searing heat due to a prolonged drought and higher than average temperatures. Just recently, days before this writing, the prior weekend brought torrents of rain and a significant cooling.  Already the “beard plan” was springing into action. Out of necessity men who are more groomed would be well-timed with a barber or stylist visit, getting just the right look, cut and product to keep facial hair maintenance consistent and easy.

 

Hotter weather typically means dealing with natural body oils which tend to become excessive on hair, causing many to shower more frequently.  In the cooler months more hair might be the norm as insulation—protection from wind and chill—with the natural oils in hair being a benefit for weathering the drier chilled air.

 

In maintaining healthy whiskers, and typical for hair anywhere else, much of the same rules for skin care apply here. Moisture is important to hair in any kind of climate, and part of what makes for healthy hair comes from the balance of understanding your body's own chemistry. Using products which allow your hair to maintain cleanliness and some of the healthy attributes of your natural hair structure gives it the best appearance, form and vitality. Hydration is not the same for all hair types, and understanding your whiskers in the changing of seasons will help guide you in selecting products which enhance and protect.

How to Fight the Shaving Nightmare, Part One

 

Bill Alley, Broadcast Host, Producer & Beard Advocate

 

I’ve spoken with hundreds of bearded men about problems growing whiskers in their initial decision days, and one of the top issues is the “razor nightmare.” I had the dream of waking up to a shaven face more than once, with the cold sweats and the run to the mirror to see if my sleeping zombie had done the gruesome deed.

Fortunately, once the determination was made to grow, I learned how to view myself bearded. The razors were tossed. Ideas were gleaned from other men with facial hair about style, and I found others with my type of growth pattern. The decision was made in 1987 that the beard was to stay forever, and with this confidence the whiskers have enjoyed over 28 years of fullness on my face.  Beard on.

 

EDITORIAL

Top 5 Things Men with Beards Are Tired of Hearing

by Adam London, Elite Daily

Dude, how long did it take you to grow that?

Can I touch it?

You have (insert food item) stuck in your beard.

(While looking at any form of photo ID) Is this really you?

Are you just too lazy to shave?

PHOTO: JENNA COY

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JULY 2016 EDITION

Click on the gray dot to read my story without glasses.

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