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which celebrities have sported good, bad and ugly facial hair

Whiskers, Lip Hamsters, Cookie Dust, Macho Stache, Utah Grizzly. Even if some of the nicknames raise eyebrows, mustaches are becoming increasingly popular.

In Netflix’s The Gray Man, Ryan Gosling calls out co-star Chris Evans’ character for his “trash-tache.”

According to the Urban Dictionary, the term usually refers to “a mustache that is never shaved but is extremely weak and small.” So Gosling’s comment is meant to be quite dejected.

Evans plays villain Lloyd Hansen and sports a mustache that’s too full to be considered weak but has unfortunate 1970s undertones and comes across as scruffy rather than suave.

In Top Gun: Maverick, actor Miles Teller plays Lieutenant Bradley “Rooster” Bradshaw and grows a heroically bad mustache to ensure audiences realize he’s the descendant of Nick “Goose” Bradshaw from the original 1986 film.

Henry Cavill, best known for playing a chiseled, clean-shaven Superman, grew a mustache that turned out to be quite expensive. The actor was contractually obligated to keep it up for the duration of Mission: Impossible – Fallout filming, but the problem arose when he was recalled for reshoots as Superman for Justice League. Unable to shave his lip and risk a breach of contract, the creators of Justice League were forced to digitally remove the mustache frame by frame.

For his role in the 2008 film Inglourious Basterds, Brad Pitt grew a mustache as twisted as his character, which drew ridicule from most corners. Even George Clooney couldn’t shake off the horrible pain he wore for the 2019 comedy series Catch-22.

Cinema in general has a long and often questionable history of facial fuzz, from the days of the big screen – think Clark Gable, Errol Flynn and David Niven – to more recent times. In the 1975 film The Man Who Would Be King, Sean Connery, who regularly sported a mustache, had one so lush it coalesced with his sideburns, while Daniel Day Lewis in his role in the 2002 film Gangs of facial hair was truly frightening made New York.

Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean.  `

Sacha Baron Cohen’s innocently clumsy alter ego Borat also sported a mustache, while Johnny Depp played Captain Jack Sparrow with a tache on a braided goatee in Pirates of the Caribbean. In 2019, Robert Downey Jr. caused a Twitter storm for the movie Avengers: Endgame when he tweeted a picture of himself with co-stars Chris Evans and Mark Ruffalo, all sporting mustaches and the words, “Who wore it best?”

Robert Redford finally mastered the art of the mustache in the 1969 film Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

It’s not just men either. Actress Gwyneth Paltrow sported the world’s least convincing mustache for her Oscar-winning role in Shakespeare In Love, while Mexican artist Frida Kahlo was undeterred in including her mustache in self-portraits, along with her monobrow and body rails, making it a distinctive part of her made identity.

Musicians Prince, Lionel Ritchie, and Freddie Mercury all grew a mustache as part of their personalities, while rapper Snoop Dogg had one on and off for much of his career. Burt Reynolds has never been seen without his, while Tom Selleck, Eddie Murphy, Steve Harvey and Hulk Hogan have all made it their signature look.

And it’s not just celebrities who get paid to grow facial hair. Some men, it seems, have chosen to grow a mustache because they like it. King Charles I of England had a flamboyant one, as did Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata, American gunslinger Wyatt Earp, writer Mark Twain, artist Salvador Dali, scientist Albert Einstein, and activist Martin Luther King.

Proof that these men are not alone, the annual Mustache and Beard Championship chooses a new host city each year to showcase its niche but global appeal. Divided into the categories of moustache, partial beard, full beard and “craft”, this is definitely not for laypeople.

Updated August 05, 2022 7:12 am

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