… if by factual you mean ‘we asked some people and this is what they thought’. We take a look at the top 10 characteristics that you gain when having a beard.
Beards transform the face – not overnight, but quickly enough that you can change your appearance with little to no effort. People tend to notice replaceable features, like beards or glasses, before they do permanent ones like eye colour or subtle scarring, so even stubble might keep you safe if you’re on the run and your wanted poster is clean-shaven…
They provide protection against the elements. A substantial beard can protect the face against sunburn or windburn, and will keep the face warm in snowstorms (although you will end up with a soggy mess when you get indoors and the icicles melt).
You gradually acquire the look of someone who is worldly wise. Think about it: Gandalf, Dumbledore, the popular culture vision of God… all bearded dudes you’d want on your side in a fight. Which brings us onto the next thing:
You always have excellent cosplay, fancy dress or Halloween choices, even if you go for the generic wizard costume. Bonus points if you already own a spangly dressing gown.
You can use your beard as a charity fundraiser. Some people shave their heads for charity – you could do a sponsored non-shave for a year. I don’t know if there are any plans to extend Movember into a general beard-growing month (God knows what they’d call it) but if they did you could be part of social change.
Beards make good impromptu weapons. Bear with me – a friend said that she ruffled her friend’s beard and got an electric shock, so you guys are basically Marvel superheroes waiting to happen.
You will always be a source of fascination for small children, especially if you produce small objects from your beard when they are around, or tell them that it’s home to a family of rodents. (I didn’t say you’d agree that these are awesome. Think of the babysitting money.)
You can actually hide stuff in your beard, especially once it gets past your neck. Useful stuff, like spare change and passwords.
You will always be fastracked in any application to be a shopping centre Santa.
10. IT’S SCIENCE…
Stroking your beard will – probably – make you seem like you’re pondering the mysteries of the universe even if you’re just trying to work out the lowest scoring answer on Pointless.