The hairy sensation

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The classic tale of “Beauty and the Beast” follows a simple formula: girl meets beast, girl is afraid of beast then girl falls in love with beast. But the real question is: how was she able to get past his abundance of hair?

At California Baptist University, students hold pride  in many things, but one main thing CBU men hold pride in is their facial hair. Others celebrate the growth and cultivation of facial hair and honor the men who dare to try.

February, aka Febru-hairy on campus, is a month chosen for the growth of facial hair and is a great time to embrace natural gifts. In many cultures, facial hair is recognized as a sign of wealth, strength and power.

It also prepares men for Mustache March, a month for growing mustaches and award ceremonies. Around campus, many men can be seen preparing for the month of the mustache yet to come. What does their facial hair express?

“I probably shouldn’t admit this, but most of the time I’m lazy and don’t want to shave,” Connor Pierce, junior and winner of the “best show” and “classic” awards at 2011’s “The Stachies” award ceremony, said.

Jonathan White, senior, believes facial hair expresses a man’s inner beast.

“Facial hair is what separates men from children and women. It also establishes trust at first glance,” White said.

Febru-hairy gives men time to prepare their mustaches for various award ceremonies in March. Practice usually begins with No Shave November and continues throughout the following three months.

“I spent six months growing a 3.5-inch beard,” White said. “Since I’m married, I decided to remove my beard (badge of honor) at Christmas time. She let me grow it out for the first six months of our wedded life. Most women aren’t like that, so she’s a complete gem.”

For Pierce, things work at a faster pace.

“I’d say it takes about a month to grow a full mustache,” Pierce said. “For a beard, it tends to grow a bit faster … in three weeks or so … I’ll get a decent amount for that amount of time. Some guys will grow a full beard in what seems like days. It’s mind-blowing.”

“The Stachies” is an event at the end of March, dedicated to the men who participate in “Mustache March” and want to show off what they have. Last year, it took place in Stamps Courtyard and was a formal red carpet event.

“[It was] lots of fun and good food,” Pierce said. “I’d definitely recommend guys going out and seeing how well they do.”

There are many different categories that the men can enter.

“I’m going to try out for a different category this year, but it depends on how my ’stache grows this time around,” Pierce said.

An event so prestigious must take some preparation.

Are there any special enhancements, diets or foods that benefit beard growth?

“I eat like a man. I grew a big beard. Coincidence? I think not,” White said.

Febru-hairy is a great time to scope out the competition and have fun with other participating men. For Pierce, growing out his facial hair was a “Whoa, I didn’t know I could grow one of these” moment.

“It’s just a fun time to go a full month to see how our beards grow out and how manly we are compared to the other men participating,” Pierce said.

About Whitney Waters

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