Growing a beard requires that you ask a series of important questions. What kind of beard style best suits your face? What’s the best source for beard grooming tips? What beard oil scent do you prefer? But most men never stop to ask why men have beards in the first place. We’ve all come to accept facial hair growth as part of the male experience. It’s not so much a question of why it exists—it’s about how to style it. However, a deeper look into your beard’s purpose offers an insightful trip through history. Why do men have beards? There’s quite a few reasons for your whiskers.
The Evolutionary Advantage of Beards
When we look back in history, beards first served the purpose of showing a man’s masculinity. Not in some misogynistic, caveman beating his chest kind of way. There was an evolutionary advantage of beards. Like a male deer’s antlers, beards served as an indication of maleness. They were the obvious signal to women that you were capable of being a protector and provider. Men without beards were viewed as boys. You were only considered a viable companion once your beard sprouted in full.
These days, women can sort out whether you’re a man or not without the beard. However, it still raises your attraction factor. Studies have shown that women prefer men with heavy stubble or full beards over their clean-shaven counterparts. The facial hair gives the impression that these men are tough and top choices for long-term relationships. Tough men can keep them safe and stay faithful. No facial hair? Those guys are liable to become one-night stands.
Men Have Beards To Stand Out Amongst the Crowd
It’s clear that men have grown their beards for centuries to attract the perfect woman. But that beard growth wasn’t always about the fairer sex. Last year, the BBC reported another evolutionary advantage of beards—standing out amongst the other men. A man with a beard was viewed as stronger and more aggressive. He was more capable of doing important jobs. The bearded guys weren’t standing in the back with their eyes glued to the floor. They were front and center, ready for action.
Aside from the evolutionary purpose of beards, facial hair was a result of testosterone levels. Though some schools of thought argue beard growth isn’t directly related to the hormone, many historians point to beard growth as a direct effect of testosterone. Sure, beards helped guys seem more formidable among their peers and attract the woman of their dreams. But, also, men have beards because they were part of their human nature.
Beard Care Has Evolved, Too
Over time, beards have gone from evolutionary agents to cultural mainstays. Though they’re more closely associated with hipsters and celebrities these days instead of men in power, beards are infiltrating more boardrooms and households than ever before. With this evolution of purpose comes an evolution of beard care. The earliest beard oil usage dates back to ancient Mesopotamia. These days, it has morphed into the single most important item in a crowded market of beard grooming products. From encouraging healthy growth to stopping irritation and dandruff, beard oil is essential in any beard care routine. Whether your objective is to exude power in your next meeting or be the most attractive guy at your neighborhood bar, keeping your beard in great shape is important. Additionally, there are plenty of shaving products for men with beards—for those times when you need to trim and clean up your appearance.
Beards were once the only way for men to show their confidence and attractiveness. But as we’ve continued to evolve, they’ve become part of our style and self-expression. It seems they’ll stick around for another few centuries.