Are These the Best Beards in the World? You Decide

“Nice beard bro!” is all I heard after walking into a house party last weekend.

I only knew a few people there, but my beard was an instant conversation starter and ice breaker for meeting new people.

It’s been like that since I started growing it out. I’ve become a big beard fan and this BBC video is no exception. Growing (and maintaining) a good looking beard isn’t as easy as you may think. You need genetics, patience, and a job that lets you grow it out. The reward though is pretty amazing as I can personally attest.

Like photographer Brock Elbank says about his pictures featured in the video:

It’s not about fashion, it’s about interesting characters that happen to wear a beard.

Beard dreads anyone? Image: Screenshot/YouTube

Beard dreads anyone? (Screenshot/YouTube)

The project documented in this video is a result of Elbank inviting in dozens of bearded men (and a bearded woman) to document the appeal of the beard across different cultures. As a photographer, what interested him about the beards he photographed (among the world’s best) was the element of self expression that they represent.

Believe it or not, a beard says something about you. Like one of my good friends told me: “With that thing you don’t even need directions, you just know where you’re going.”

Well, not really. I use map apps to get anywhere, but perception is reality, and that is no truer than with beards. It just appears to people that I can now fix things, or diagnose their car problems (all things I cannot do).

Remember beards will always go well with some sort of nautical attire. Image: Screenshot/YouTube

Beards will always go well with some sort of nautical attire. (Screenshot/YouTube)

While the beard has made a recent comeback in the infamous hipster community, it never really went away. The beard has been, and likely always will be, a staple symbol of manliness. Though a few females are pushing the limits on that one.

Another fashion tip: beards always look go when coupled with your best Hemingway style sweater. Image: Screenshot/YouTube

Another fashion tip: Beards always look good when coupled with your best Hemingway-style sweater. (Screenshot/YouTube)

Elbank seems to think we are at a societal “beard peak.” Do you think that’s true? Check out the video and see for yourself.

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