Do women like beards? The facial hair truths every bearded man should know
When I first considered growing a beard I asked myself the very same question a long time ago. Then I realized something important, if I liked my beard that’s all that really mattered. And so, I grew and I grew.
Within time, I felt more confident with my beard.
I had no trouble at all with women, in fact, I was meeting more and more of them than ever before.
Was it due to my age? Perhaps, but I knew one thing was certain.
My beard made me happy. Though, a bit embarrassed during the initial growth stages!
After growing out a full beard and figuring out the perfect shape and size, I came back to this question.
I wanted to answer it, but not with just a personal statement.
So, over the course of 184 days I began working on a factual answer backed by real records on a grand scale.
However, before I jump into that, I have a few important thoughts I’ve learned along the way that I’d like to share with you.
A quick note
If I told you the answer was no, would it really matter? How about yes instead?
Think about it for a moment here gentlemen..
Imagine having no capital or status; in terms of love your chances of being broke are high. Acquire both and suddenly you’re capturing the hearts of women around the world.
To put this in perspective, do you really believe shaving your beard is going to suddenly transform you into a man women crave? Did they even crave you before you had a beard?
If you were clean-shaven before you got married, would a beard really be terms for a divorce? In any healthy marriage, couples make small sacrifices, if a beard is a big problem you’re going to soon discover some deeper truths that will hurt in the future..
Even if your single and don’t have one right now but are thinking about growing one, ask yourself.. How’s your love life at this present moment?
For a lot of men out there, the answer to all these questions sums up like this: Growing a beard isn’t going to change your luck much. If anything, it might boost your confidence up a bit; a new sense of style will often do that.
You know, I can’t really think of a time where I’ve ever seen a women go absolutely nuts over a shaven face.
You don’t generally hear women screaming, look at that precise cut, it’s so smooth! Though, most shaving commercials would have you believe it.. (When was the last time your woman just had to know if you shaved with a single blade or five blade? Probably, never..)
On the other hand, when I come across women oozing over bearded men it’s not only astonishing, but it happens often. They have such fire hot passionate for the beard; cue the snuggling comfort, and masculine appeal with lumbersexuals.
Why don’t some women like beards?
There’s absolutely no doubt about it, some women claim certain men with beards look like hobos. I agree!
They also say the beard rash feels awful on the their gentle face. I don’t blame them for it either, it’s improper for any man to deliver that first kiss with a face full of steel wool.
Other women say the beard transfers too much oil to their face causing them to break out. Sure, I could see that.
However, here’s something important to consider..
For all the men out there who don’t take care of their beard, you are literally setting up women with wrong expectations!
Don’t trim your beard? Of course, you’ll look like an unattractive hobo. Wake up in the morning with beard hair in six different directions? If you walk out the door without any wax or balm, rest assured you can safely bet it looks like quite awful. Too lazy to wash your beard and apply oil? She’s going to remember your first kiss with one word: Sandpaper!
Now, about the oil transfer.. In reality, oil is going to get transferred regardless. If a woman is breaking out in acne, don’t just let it happen, your skincare products are more than likely causing a reaction. Throw some hypoallergenic and fragrance-free products to problem solve here.
Of course, there’s the beard burn too, but let’s be real. Ladies, in the hour plus it takes you to get dressed in the morning, pre-moisturizing and applying a little aloe takes only seconds.
What’s the point here?
The truth is, almost every single complaint I’ve heard about beards includes the above.
They can easily solved by taking the time to groom, yet many men with beards still don’t do it!
Sure, not all women will be attracted to beards, but if take care of yourself a good majority of them will. Again, key phrase here is not all women..
Think about it; the reality!
Regardless, even if you were to follow all those things mentioned above, not all women will even be attracted to you in the first place!
Your too skinny, too muscular, don’t have the right eyes, skin tone, voice, level of confidence, etc. I could go on forever.. There are too many factors to even worry about your beard! The reality is, every women out there is attracted to all sorts of different men. The same is true for men when it comes to women. If that wasn’t the case, we’d all be reproducing at alarming rates with just about anybody.
To be blunt, you could go to gym and transform from a skinny skeleton to bulky bodybuilder. Some women still wouldn’t date you.
Consider your style too; just imagine putting on a suit vs. going out in a t-shirt. By changing up your entire wardrobe you can suddenly command attention and eyeballs.
Now, I know that’s a “status” thing, but it’s actually relevant to beards too. You can argue that most CEOs have clean shave faces, therefore they have a higher social status.
Well, I can tell you that in Britain’s Royal Pharmaceutical Society study the majority of male professors had beards, while lower staff employees like lectures and research fellows were shaven.
Consider Dan Bilzerian, Ernest Hemingway, Shakespeare, Abraham Lincoln, and Brad Pitt too.. Even the Most Interesting Man In The World has a beard, think about it!
Which generally all fail to solve for a few critical variables:
Have any of the women ever dated a man with a beard? If so, was the experience negative or positive.
Aside from the grooming on the man’s end, here’s some perspective: If every woman I ever dated was blonde and each relationship ended in disaster, you can bet I’m going to find brunettes to be incredibly more attractive!
Not to mention, if a woman’s father was clean-shaved things get even more complex verse if he had a beard. In some scientific studies they claim we often choose partners that resemble certain features as our parents.
With that said, there’s your answer as to why every experiment doesn’t solve for much.
In a minute, I’m going to show you a new study that solves for this below, but for now..
Scientific Study #1: Official Journal of the Human Behavior and Evolution Society, University of New South Wales professors Barnaby J. Dixson and Rob C. Brooks. 351 females and 177 males with 10 photographs.
Findings: Females rated men with heavy stubble as the most attractive, while men found heavy stubble and full beards the most handsome. In terms of health, women rated men with full beards as healthier than men who were clean shaven with no facial hair. For parenting skills, men will full beards ranked the highest. Yet, it’s no surprised that men with beards were also perceived as the most masculine. In comparison, light stubble and clean-shaven men were rated the least attractive by both women and men.
In summary: Mild beardedness won, though, full-bearded men were still perceived to be better fathers and family protectors. Both Books and Dixon believed that facial hair gives a man more maturity and masculinity at the cost of also looking more dominant and aggressive.
Scientific Study #2: University of New South Wales. 1,452 female and 213 male volunteers recruited from The Sex Lab. Three groups that were shown mostly beards, most clean-shaven, and lastly a mixture of everything.
Findings: Attractiveness rose when clean-shaven, bearded and heavy stubble gentlemen were presented in a more rare manner.
Scientific Study #3: Psychologists from Canada and New Zealand. Paul Vasey of the University of Lethbridge in Alberta, Canada and Barnaby Dixson of Victoria University of Wellington, in New Zealand. 200 females from Samoa and New Zealand were to rate the same man with and without his beard. 19 fully beard men who volunteers were asked to make both a normal and angry expression before and after their beards.
Findings: Clean-shaven faces were rated higher, while bearded men with angry facial expressions were viewed as being even angrier.
Men sided with the females, however they perceived the males with beards to be of a higher social status.
Scientific Study #4: American Journal of Sociology, Dwight E. Robinson. Fashions in Shaving and Trimming of the Beard. (Though, not a comparison, it’s still important to note in this guide)
Findings: While the patented safety razor skyrocketed in sales in 1095, beardlessness had already been on the rise for thirty years. During the Boer War, 1899-1092 and World War 1, clean-shaven faces rose significantly with the highest peaks from 1915 to 1922.
Summary: Sideburns were the most popular back in 1853, however by 1877 sideburns and the moustache were king. Full beards became the most popular by 1892, however moustaches triumphed them during 1917 to 1919. It’s interesting comparing it a woman’s skirt, however the beard was impacted by more historical events. In other words, it’s negative frequency-dependent selection (Robinson 1976) where populations still have diversity, even though some characteristics are more desirable traits.
Scientific Study #5: University of Southern Queensland researchers on beard health.
Findings: Beards can block up to 95% of the sun’s harmful UV rays. In return, beards can potentially lower your risk of skin cancer. In addition, beards can help the respiratory system by blocking dust and pollen for those who suffer from allergies. Not to mention, interestingly enough, a man with a full beard meant healthier and more youthful skin.
Summary: You pretty much get the idea above. However, if a woman is genuinely attracted to you, chances are she care about your health too.
The latest: Albuquerque’s Channel 7 News did a recent story on the bacteria in beards by doing swab samples and then sending them off to the lab. They found bacteria similar to the what’s inside of your gut. It was supposed to be a shocking viral piece. In reality, it’s not harmful, more natural to be fair. Chances are your cell phone contains ten times that amount in fecal matter alone, but that doesn’t stop anyone from ever using them.
Scientific Study #6: Charles Darwin
Findings: Though he sported a heavy beard himself, his belief from a scientific point of view was that beards were an attractive attribute in the pursuit of female mates.
Scientific Study #7: 2009, United Kingdom, Northumbria University researchers. 15 male photos each with different beard levels.
Findings: Light beards were ranked as the most dominant. Stubble and light bearded men were the most attractive and deemed the most ideal romantic partner in both long and short term. For masculinity, dominance, aggressive, and maturity, cleave-shaven men finished last as long term partners. Full beards and clean shaven men were the lowest in terms of attractiveness.
Religious Study #1: The Bible. St Augustine (Psalm 133, 6), Lactantius, St. John Chrysostom, Apostolic Constitutions, and Clement of Alexandria.
Findings: Beards are signals of courage. Beards distinguish sex, the beauty of manliness and strength. A disgrace for a man with a beard to work in lower status positions. You shall not mar your beards. (Doing so to please other men, is against the law and an abomination.) It is impious to desecrate the symbol of manhood. Let the chin have the hair.
I could go on..
Summary: If a woman is truly religious, you could consider it another attractive selling point for beards.
General Study #1: Gillet, over one-thousand women. Multiple choice survey.
Findings: Smooth or clean shaven 85%, trimmed beard 59%, moustache 39%, light stubble or five o’clock shadow 45%, goatee 41%, long beard 14%.
General Study #2: Braun, 2015.
Findings: 2015, 52% of British men had some form of facial hair. 39% said it made them feel more attractive. 30% felt more confident. 43% more mature. 26% more cool. 19% more like an alpha male. 7% even claimed it made them feel more successful at work. 14% said they would shave after the fashion trend died down. 33% said they would never shave for life.
General Study #3: Match study in 2011, Canadian women.
Findings: 62% found clean-shaven men the most attractive, followed by stubble. Moustaches received only 8%. A man with a goatee was rated as spending at least $80 on the first date. Bearded men least likely to have sex with 16% asking women out in the past year.
General Study #4: eBay, fashion survey. 1,000 females.
Findings: 55% of women who surveyed were attracted to bearded men.
General Study #5: Shick Skin-dex survey. A national research poll by StrategyOne.
Findings: Men who shave 5x or more per week have twice as much sex. They are also 7% happier, 11% more outgoing, 12% more social, and 12% more likely to be fulfilling their dreams. Men who shave only 2x per week are twice as likely to live with their parents and earn $15,100 less per year. 82% of women showed a preference for clean-shaven men, but only 64% would rather have sex with one over a man with stubble.
Men in Los Angeles, Philadelphia and New York are most likely to have a full beard.
In summary: This survey was sent out to the press the same day Schick announced their Hydro razor had hit retailer shelves. They never mentioned if those numbers were against beards or not, only the frequency of shaving per week.
A new study
I looked and I looked..
And yet, I still wasn’t completely satisfied with the answers out there.
So, I decided to put together an unbiased study with no incentives to discover the truth; only a much bigger scale.
I figured it would be neat to share it with the rest of the men out there, women too!
Here’s what I found over the past 184 days of working on this:
Next Luxury Scientific Study: 2015. 10,667 women of all ages, backgrounds, incomes, interests, etc.
Findings: 62.7% of women on Reddit found beards attractive. 60.2% of women who spent their time elsewhere online liked men with beards. The average male celebrity received a 58.3% approval rate from women after growing a beard. Celebrities who grow a beard have a 16.6% higher chance of becoming more likable by women. 56% of women encourage celebrities to start growing beards. Across U.S. radio stations, 54.5% of women liked bearded men.
The #1 complaint women had about bearded men which led to an immediate no, was a man’s poor grooming habits.
Summary: Across 10,667 females, the end result was 59.3% of them being attracted to men with beards. In comparison, another study was taken including the responses of both men and women. 67.6% were in favor of beards. I’ll write this other study up in the future.
There you have it
The majority of women like men with beards, though only by a slight 9.3% over being clean-shaven or with stubble.
If you are considering growing a beard, I hope this gives you the confidence do so.
Even if you prefer to keep shaving, don’t worry, the experience of wet shaving is often worth it.