All the grooming advice you need to grow a 'stache for a good cause—without looking like a total creep.
Men's Fitness Editors 1 / 6
What's the deal with Movember?
Whether you're a veteran "Mo Bro" or the guy celebrating the fact that he can finally grow facial hair that isn't patchy, Movember is coming at us fast. The month is your opportunity to raise funds and awareness for prostate and testicular cancer research by sporting a 'stache for 30 days.
Want in? Here are the rules: Start with a clean shaved face on November 1. For the entire month of November, each Mo Bro must grow a mustache and keep it groomed. No sideburns or goatees allowed. The last (and most important) rule is that each man participating must conduct himself like a true gentleman—all month long.
Here’s how to support the cause without looking like a scumbag.
The Movember Foundation is the leading global charity committed to changing the face of men's health. Movember challenges men to grow moustaches during November, to spark conversation and raise funds for men's health issues, specifically prostate cancer, testicular cancer and men's mental health. To learn more about Movember or to donate to the cause, visit Movember.com.
There are a few things you’ll need to do before growing and grooming your new mo, especially if it’s your first attempt at a ‘stache.
First, clear up acne. Since ingrown hairs tend to clog pores, shaving makes you more prone to pimples. Get into the habit of washing your face twice a day with a cleanser that contains glycolic acid to get rid of pore-clogging dirt and bacteria.
Also, use an exfoliating wash once or twice a week to slough away the outer layer of dead skin cells. Look for “micro beads” on the label as they’re the ingredient that does the digging. Exfoliating lets extra oil escape instead of clogging your pores, preventing future breakouts.
Finally, whiten your teeth. Nothing complements a mo like a nice pair of pearly whites beneath it. Consider gel-filled applicators, whitening strips, whitening rinses, and whitening toothpastes with surface-stain removers.
Whether you want to grow a full-on Magnum or a simple after-eight, do some research as to the lady ticklers you admire, but be honest about what will actually look good on your face—and the amount of work you’re willing to put in. The artist-style mo will call for daily waxing, whereas the pencil requires daily trimming. And don’t forget that it’s all about the ‘stache, so you’re going to have to shave the rest of your face daily.
Start off clean-shaven—and use the right razor to get there Avoiding ingrown hairs and razor burn while getting a close shave starts with having the right tools on hand. An angled multiple-blade razor makes it easier to cover all the curves of your face, and additional blades catch annoyingly tiny hairs. They’re also easier to use. If you have sensitive skin, try an electric razor. It won’t shave as close, but it’s less irritating to skin. If you’re using a disposable razor, replace blades each week and clean electric razors with alcohol after use. The best time to shave is either in the shower or right after. The heat from the steam helps soften the beard hairs, allowing for a closer and more comfortable shave.
Use pre-shave oil and/or shave cream It will soften the beard hairs while allowing the blade to get a closer shave. Look for oils that don’t contain alcohol and dyes, as these ingredients can be drying. If you have sensitive skin, consider shaving creams and gels that are paraben-, fragrance-, and allergen-free.
Always use an aftershave lotion Soothe inflammation and remove redness after even the roughest of cold-weather shaves with hydrating lotion that’s designed to moisturize freshly-shaved skin. To reduce redness and irritation, look for one that contains aloe. Apply the product when skin is still damp so it locks in moisture. If you notice irritation, use an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream. It’s safe to use on your face, and cuts down on the inflammation that causes redness.
It’s a good idea to invest in some mustache-specific tools that’ll help your ‘stache look its best all month. Pick up:
1) A chrome mustache razor that’ll allow for precision trimming, shaping, and outlining without risking a nick at the lip 2) Mustache scissors for meticulous trimming to help tame even the most unruly facial hair 3) Mustache wax to keep hairs in place, whether you’ve got a handlebar or a horseshoe 4) A mustache comb to brush hairs daily
After you've gathered the essentials, you're ready to mo like a pro. Follow these tips from Rob McMillen, head barber at the Blind Barber in New York City, on how to style the most popular 'staches.
The Handlebar As your 'stache grows, comb it from the center out, to train the hair in that direction. Shape the points with wax and twist them for the ideal shape, using hairspray to increase the hold even more. For inspiration, do a search for pics of the iconic handlebar worn by baseball Hall of Famer Rollie Fingers.
The Chevron For the Magnum, P.I. look made famous by Tom Selleck, shave a strong, diagonal line from your nose to about a quarter of an inch beyond the corner of your mouth, where the hair should come to a subtle point. Trim along your upper lip so the 'stache is flush with the top edge. Use a razor to trim other spots.
The Horseshoe Visualize Hulk Hogan and shave your cheeks, but avoid the mouth. Leave a half-inch vertical line of hair from mouth to chin on both sides. Using a trimmer, shave the upper edge of your mustache to create a sharp border, leaving just a half inch of hair. Use a trimmer to adjust the length, but keep the shape.
5) Dress to impress
While there’s no doubt you'll be looking good and promoting a great cause this Movember, it can be tough finding clothes that don’t make you look like a farmer. Or a biker. Or a bum. So, what exactly should you wear with your new facial hair?
We’ve got some suggestions: suits, leather jackets, neutrals, dark plaid, fitted sweaters, layers, and slim-fit jeans.
Pictured above: 7 For All Mankind's Movember jean—$20 for each pair goes to the charity. Check 'em out at 7forallmankind.com