Illustration: Susana Gómez Báez

The fine art of moustachery

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By Nicole Schmidt

Moustaches in modern society are a quaint – in some cases – humorous look that appear to be slightly out of place. That is, until November rolls around.

As the month drags on, facial hair slowly begins to take over once clean-shaven men.

This trend, known as Movember, aims to raise funds and awareness for men’s health.

This year marks the tenth annual campaign. Participants are encouraged to begin the month with a cleanshaven face and grow, trim and style their moustaches to suit their unique tastes, as well as register online and raise funds by seeking sponsors.

Some participate through the actual act of growing a moustache, but don’t register online or fundraise for the cause, leading others to think the movement has just become an excuse to grow absurd facial hair.

“People participate because they just want to be part of it,” said Sep Seifi, a student at Ryerson who partook in Movember last year by growing a moustache, but said he didn’t really know much about the cause at that time. “The message gets lost within the process of growing the moustache.”

This has a lot to do with fact that Movember is a socially acceptable time for men to experiment with their facial hair. Since everyone is sporting moustaches, joining in on the fad seems like the normal thing to do.

“I’ve always wanted to see what having a moustache would be like,” said Mitchell Demars, a first-time participant. Now’s the time to try it out without getting judgments tossed my way.”

Demars has not registered online, he says that it’s not economically viable for him to donate.

But despite the fact that fundraising isn’t always the first intention behind choosing to grow a moustache, Jesse Hayman, the Movember community development manager, said that the biggest thing is awareness.

“The moustache is a conversationstarter,” said Hayman. “It gives you the opportunity to speak about men’s health.”

To see how Ryerson athletes are participating in Movember, see page 12.

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