24 Hours Toronto

In defence of facial hair

By: Jen Kirsch

From page 1 In Toronto, beards were once something you’d only see on the faces of musicians, west-end hipsters, and those in the restaurant and service industry (think Richard Lambert, Owner of Parts and Labour and Daniel Wahlen of Wallace Espresso). But over the past few years, bearded faces have done more than make a cameo, they’re here in a big way. I suppose the aforementioned gents were likely the pioneers, which isn’t too surprising given their success. Facial hair has always been my be-all and endall (have a beard, have my heart). The hip tresses brood manliness and breed more personality than any outfit ever could. And I’m not alone. Earlier this week Oxford dictionary announced its words of the years (predictably, emoji won the top spot); and to my delight, ‘lumbersexual’ made the shortlist.

Dollar Beard ClubLumbersexual, noun: a young urban man who cultivates an appearance and style of dress (typified by a beard and checked shirt) suggestive of a rugged outdoor lifestyle. It being November, men of all ages, shapes and sizes are strutting down the streets of #The6ix donning various styles of facial hair for Movember and it got me wondering: Why must this look lamely last for a mere 30 days? Why can’t men acceptably grow ‘em out, whether they work in offices or not? At least to keep their faces warm in our cold as F winter, as if they need an excuse. #GetOnIt This is a message that Dollar Beard Club, a monthly subscription service that delivers beard care products to your door for as little as $1/month is sending out. The bearded brothers are known for their outrageous and hilarious ads, which have millions of views online. Its founder Chris Stoikos, who hails from just north of the GTA says, “Beards have been around as long as man, and the natural thing for the species is to let it go and learn how to manage it. Our larger goal with DBC is to encourage men to embrace their manhood and educate and provide them with the tools they need to do it right.” Toronto’s tastemakers have been seen rocking variations of beards, despite their professions. We’ve got Paul Mason, the face of TOM* Toronto Men’s Fashion Week, a.k.a “fashion Santa;” Dr. Parambir S. Keila, ER physician and accidental model, who was just in the Holt Renfrew Fashion Campaign; Taylor Corrigan, Jack Daniels Brand Ambassador, whose perfectly groomed statement ‘stache is almost as well known in the city as the brand in which he reps; and most notably, Strombo whose salt-and-pepper, well-maintained beard graces our TVs as we watch him on Hockey Night in Canada. But wait, there’s more. The third annual Suits & Staches is Movember Canada’s official flagship gala taking place at the historic Leon’s Roundhouse on Friday. The chic open bar soirée includes interactive food stations, Stella Artois glass engraving station, a pop-up barber shop for mo’ grooming, and notable performances. Frank Walker, VP of Entertainment at The Stronach Group, music producer and DJ-about-town (who rocks a more exaggerated scruff on the daily) told me he’ll be shaving it so he can rock a ‘stache for the event. I’ll be in attendance too, so come show me what you got, boys!

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Jen’s tip: Say goodbye to your razors and try a beard on for size. Check out DollarBeardClub.com just in time for the holidays to get geared and groomed up. Giddy up!

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