World Beard and Moustache Championships
The World Beard and Moustache Championship is an organization intended to bring together those with a love of both common and unique facial hair. Their goal is to promote World wide appreciation for moustaches and beards as well as organize events and competitions that promote friendship.
There are currently eleven different countries, represented by individual clubs, competing in several different categories for the best facial hair. Countries competing are Belgium, Canada, England, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine and America.
This year at the World Championships Matt Bischoff will be competing in the Freestyle Beard competition for The Beard Team USA with his extremely long red beard. Bischoff also has a tattoo of Hans Langseth who sported the world's longest beard in history, on his back which will be featured on the hit show Miami Ink. (Langseth's beard was and still may be on display at the Smithsonian Museum.)
There are three categories in the World Beard and Moustache Championships; the moustache category and the partial and full beard categories. Each category is broken down into several classes.
For the Moustache category there are six classes, natural, English, dali, imperial, Hungarian and freestyle.
For the natural class, all moustaches may be styled but must be done so without any type of aids. The hairs can grow from less than 1.5 cm past the end of the upper lip.
In the English class the hairs are slender and start from the middle of the upper lip. The hairs must be very long and pulled off to the side of the face.
The Dali style is similar to the English style except the tips of the moustache are to curl or arch upwards. The hairs of this style must start growing from the end of the upper lip rather than from the center.
The Imperial moustache is small and busy with the tips curling upwards in the same manner as the Dali style.
Hungarian moustaches are big and bushy. The tips are pulled sideways away from the face and the hairs must start growing from the center of the upper lip.
The Freestyle category is for the moustaches that do not fit into any of the other classes. The hairs can be styled with or without aids.
The partial beard category pertains to any beard that is not considered full. As with the moustache category there are six classes in the partial beard competition. The classes are natural goatee, fumanchu, musketeer, imperial, sideburns freestyle and partial beard freestyle.
A natural goatee may not be styled with legal aids such as wax and hairspray and the use of artificial hair color is strictly forbidden.
The FuManchu style requires the chin to be shaved and the tips of the moustache hairs be grown long and pulled down well below the chin.
Muskateer styles are long and narrow with the tips pointed outwards from the side of the face. It must include a small narrow pointed beard in the center of the chin.
Imperial beards are perhaps the strangest of the bunch. They are beards that start with hair growing on the cheeks and into a moustache. These fancy beards are allowed to be styled with legal aids.
Any partial beard that includes a shaved chin can be considered for the sideburns freestyle class and any partial beard not fitting into any of these classes qualifies for the partial freestyle class.
The Full Beard category is a category all of its own. It includes facial hair that grows on the cheeks, chin, upper lip, lower lip and sideburns without having any natural or shaved gaps.
There are only five classes to compete in this category and they are the Verdi, Garibaldi, Natural, Natural with styled sideburns and freestyle classes.
Verdi beards are short and round with a styled moustache. The Garibaldi class consists of beards that are broad, round and full but are no longer than 20 cm's with an integrated moustache. Natural beards are considered to be completely natural with no pre-trimmed shape. A natural beard with styled sideburns is pretty much the same as the natural beards category except that the sideburns must be styled. The freestyle category consists of full beards that do not fit into any other class.
The judging of the World Beard and Moustache Championships are relatively simple. Contestants from each category are presented in a group before seven judges. Each judge gives a secret vote consisting of scores between 5 and 10 points per participant. The highest and lowest scores of each contestant are not included in their overall score and the ones with the highest overall scores win. Each participant, whether they win or lose, is given a diploma. The top three winners receive a prize.