Competitive Bearding: The Hairiest Sport Around
We’ve all seen the recent rise of crazy sports in the past few years: eukonkanto, the Finnish sport of “wife-carrying” or the Wu-Tang-inspired hybrid sport of chess-boxing both come to mind. While less taxing than most physical activities, “competitive bearding” has seen an explosion in popularity in recent years.
Though facial hair coming into vogue and the popularity of beards in pop culture have both fueled the growth of the sport, its Instagram where you can find the most outlandish beards since Charles Darwin. Check out who four of our favorite “bearders” on Instagram below and remember, bearding ain’t easy.
Followers: 4 K
If you’re in need of some inspiration to jumpstart your competitive bearding career, look no further than @beardspo. Hailing from Perth in Western Australia, Luke Swenson both maintains his own beard and also runs the first zine devoted strictly to bearding and it’s various accoutrements, including oils and grooming tools.
In the Pacific Northwest, beards are as ubiquitous as rainfall so it’s rare that a beard stands out from the crowd so prominently. Madison Rowley, better known as @maaddogg is impossible to miss however. Last year, Rowley was crowned champ in the Garibaldi category with a beard that resembles the afro of Jimi Hendrix and a black bear’s offspring. Rowley is also an entrepreneur and the founder of Rides Wax, a premium mustache wax brand.
The cold weather in Minnesota demands only the thickest of beards to survive the Arctic chill. Thankfully, MJ Johnson, who posts under the handle @razorhater, has more than enough insulation to go around. The founder of the Minneapolis Beard and Mustache club is also the current National and World Champion in the imperial partial category, defined as a beard with hair only growing from the cheeks and upper lip.
Followers: 26 K
Though not as active in the actual competitive bearding community as some of the others on this list, Trig Perez could easily take home titles in several beard competitions. The L.A based self proclaimed “beardgod” and street artist is the LA Manager of Apothecary87, a premium men’s grooming company specializing in, you guessed it, facial hair.
If you’re interested in seeing the hairiness in person, the National Beard and Moustache Competition is taking place this fall in Brooklyn, New York on Nov, th.