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Handlebar Moustache Survey by Mark of South Africa

Let’s hear from Mark

1. How long have you had a handlebar moustache, and what is your history with moustaches?

I’ve had my moustache for about 1.5 years now. I’ve only really tried growing my moustache one time before, for about 3 months. I felt pretty good with my progress until a relative asked, “Trying to grow a moustache, huh?” I was frustrated with how long it was taking so I gave up. It’s more substantial now!

2. What moved you to grow a handlebar moustache? Do any relatives or ancestors have handlebar moustaches?

I’ve admired my dad’s moustache for years – he’s always had one. (Though not exactly a handlebar). I don’t know of any other family members who had handlebar moustaches. I’m currently living on a stint in South Africa and decided that I’d give it a go. New place, new opportunity.

handlebar moustache survey pic Mark S Africa

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3. What are some of the reactions of others as you grew your handlebar moustache? What sort of reactions or comments did you get initially from your significant other?

No significant other. Female friends tend to be the ones who protest the most (especially initially). Guys often give a nod of approval or simply ask how long I’ve been growing it.

4. What are some of the funny or strange comments others have made about your handlebar moustache over time?

Well, so far two people have asked me to pose with them for photos! Some people just don’t understand…and ask, “Why do you do that?” (pointing to my moustache). I’ve also been compared to a cape buffalo before. Yesterday I was having a conversation with someone and 5 minutes into it, he just busted up laughing and said he couldn’t handle it (no pun intended) because it looked so funny to him!

5. Has having a handlebar moustache had any effects on your personality/behavior, attitude, self-expression, sense of self?

I spend more time each day getting ready, and often take care to make sure the curls are staying put. I’ve taken to laughing at myself more with other people. It’s somewhat surprising to me how much attention it draws.

6. What is it in your personality that drew you to growing a handlebar moustache?

I liked the idea of having a ridiculous moustache (but can’t exactly state why) and just finally had the time and space to do it.

7. Have you been in any moustache contests or attended any such gatherings?

Nope.

8. It takes courage to wear a handlebar moustache. What would you say to those who think you look odd, silly or stupid with it?

Well, I suppose everyone’s entitled to their opinions. And I do think I look somewhat silly with it…so I usually just laugh with them :-)

9. What waxes, styling aids or glues to you prefer and why?

I use Layrite Super Hold pomade. It’s easy to apply and washes out quickly with water. I’ve also been using the same 4oz can for nearly a year now. I tried using a glue stick early on with some success, but the pomade is just more simple to use.

10. What do you think a handlebar moustache does for a man?

Well, it certainly makes him stand out more, in my experience. Haha.

11. How attached are you to your handlebar moustache and what would it take for you to cut it off or remove the curls and not grow it back?

I think I’m more attached to it than I tend to let on. I do think of it as temporary, but I’m not sure what will make me decide it’s time to remove it. After all, I still have a whole second can of pomade…

12. Have you accumulated any moustached merchandise, shirts, mugs or other stuff?

Not much, really. I got a couple of small gag gifts from friends and family. No shirts or mugs so far.

13. Can you recommend some other moustache web sites?

I’ve really enjoyed The Art of Manliness recently. It has a couple articles about moustaches, though it’s got a lot of other good stuff too. (There’s also a handlebar in the website title, if that helps!)

http://www.artofmanliness.com/2012/11/01/how-to-grow-a-handlebar-mustache/

14. All about color: How closely does your moustache match the color of the hair on your head? How many colors are in your moustache? Do you like its color? Have you ever dyed it?

It seems to be the same as my hair color (blond). There are some darker blond hairs and some really light ones. Not sure “how many” colors, really…it’s fairly uniform but obviously looks darker in denser areas. I’m content with the color of it, and haven’t ever thought about trying to dye it.

15. What would you like to see on handlebarmoustachelife.com?

I haven’t spent a lot of time here, so I don’t really have any recommendations thus far.

16. How has having a handlebar moustache affected your love life, dating, and does it interfere with kissing?

N/A

17. What do you do for a living and what impact do you think your handlebar moustache has with customers, coworkers and superiors?

I work for Campus Crusade for Christ, an international Christian organization, on a college campus. I spend a lot of my time meeting and talking to new people, and I’d say it definitely helps people to remember/recognize me!

18. Does your handlebar moustache give you any superpowers?

Haha, funny story.

A couple of weeks ago I decided to join a coffee cup tasting competition with some friends. It was just for fun, and I’d never done anything like it before. The host of the event was asking each competitor what their superpower was (people tended to mention their experience with coffee tasting, or the practice they’d done) and I just said, “my moustache.” Long story short, and much to my surprise, I actually came first in the competition!

You can read a bit more here and see an awkward photo of me at the award ceremony (moustache visible):

http://www.thecoffeemag.co.za/blog/1/1607/new-eastern-cape-winners

19. Eating – neatly – can be a challenge with a larger moustache. Do you have any eating tips, or stories to share? Have you been tempted to remove the HB due to eating issues?

I find it particularly difficult to be neat when eating pb&j sandwiches. I’ve actually eaten them with a fork and knife before. Cutting them diagonally helps a lot, in my experience.

I also have to use rather small spoons when eating (soup, especially). My friends have noticed my odd manner of opening my mouth very widely to avoid the moustache when eating.

It’s probably the most common/frequent challenge of having a handlebar moustache, but I’ve not really been tempted to remove it simply because of eating.

20. Have you ever styled your mustache in a comical manner or specifically for a Halloween costume?

I’ve considered styling it straight out before, but haven’t tried very hard and found it tough to keep it there. No costumes yet. Sometimes the curls fall forward and look like insect pincers…which is, again, good for a laugh.

21. What is your preferred style for your handlebar moustache, and do you do a variety of styles?

I just use pomade on the curls and roll them up as neatly as possible. Any variety is usually just the result of them falling out of place.

22. Would you share your location and / or your age?

Port Elizabeth, South Africa. I’m 24.


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