Gentleman, it’s that time of year again. Time to forgo the razor and pick up a few facial hair essentials. That’s right, it’s No-Shave November. Whether you’re harvesting a goatee, mustache, or beard this month, growing facial hair of any variety is not all bro-tastic moments and Instagram-able selfies. With every centimeter your hair grows, your significant other will most likely roll his or her eyes, and you’ll find yourself looking like a nomadic lumberjack versus a modern, stylish man, right? Not necessarily. Looking fashionable and sporting some whiskers aren’t mutually exclusive. Behold: six stylish — and dare we say iconic — sources of inspiration to guide you through No-Shave November.
1. Abraham Lincoln
The 16th president of the United States remains an unforgettable Commander in Chief for a slew of reasons: For starters, he played a key role in abolishing slavery, has one of the most infamous presidential assassinations, and boasts a pretty impressive memorial in Washington, D.C. Grooming-wise? The guy had a pretty amazing beard. I mean, have you seen a photograph of Lincoln sans-scruff? Forget his presidential air: His jawline was scrawny and his face weathered. According to Time, his face was so frown-full that his team wondered if it would hurt his chances of being elected president. As the story goes, 11-year-old Grace Bedell recommended that he grow a beard. And the rest is history. Lincoln’s beard gave his face a fuller shape as well as a masculine oomph. With his elongated sideburns, the former president had a carefully manicured halo of hair around his face. Plus, his whiskers were the perfect counterpart to his sky-high hat.
2. Johnny Depp
As his pirate alter-ego, Captain Jack Sparrow, Depp holds back no theatrics with his hair. Dreadlocks, which go all the way down to his chest, are accompanied by a mustache, goatee, and a double-pointed chinstrap. In the real world, however, the actor’s beard game is toned-down. But we don’t call it boring; instead, let’s refer to his fuzz as “eclectic minimalism.” We’re not talking about the basic beard that essentially every Hollywood veteran has. On the contrary, Depp has created a signature look with unconventional types of facial hair — just like Captain Jack Sparrow, minus the double-pointed aspect. It’s out there, but not offensive. Instead, it’s the perfect blend of laid-back and polished.
3. Joaquin Phoenix
We see most A-listers’ jawlines in two opposite states: scruff-free and “rugged” five o’clock shadow. But Phoenix? He has some serious fuzz versatility. From the polished mustache he wore as Theodore in Her to that beastly beard the actor sported while making his hoax-turned-documentary I’m Still Here, Phoenix is a role model for facial hair greatness. Sure, your scruff may develop into the latter by the end of the month; however, you can transform your whiskers from unruly to tamed with a quick trim and a carefully contoured razor regime. Though we do think that with a leave-in conditioner, even your hairiest face can be silky smooth.
4. Hugh Jackman
He may be known for his stellar singing chops and blockbuster hits, but it’s also safe to say that Jackman’s hairy reputation precedes the man himself. Relax, we’re talking about his famed role as Wolverine in the X-Men series. On camera, the actor boasts ferocious (albeit curiously shaped) fuzz with a seriously spiked mane. It’s masculine, tough, and (of course) extremely wolf-like. Plus, major kudos for his manscaping skills. But Jackman’s beards are even impressive off the screen. In real life, the Aussie usually sports a buzzed-down (and more naturally trimmed) iteration of his Wolverine beard-mustache combo. While it’s similar to every other leading man’s whiskers, it just goes to show you that facial hair can really make a man’s (and his fictional character’s) look complete.
5. Tom Selleck
Honestly, is any iconic facial hair list complete without the dashing Tom Selleck? We think not. While the 70-year-old actor has had a laundry list of roles, both leading and supporting, it’s undeniably his facial hair that merits him to be a sex symbol to some. Whether he pairs it with some silver scruff or a fresh face, Selleck’s trademark mustache always stands out without being too in-your-face. It’s the perfect blend of masculinity, traditionalism, and modernity. And, unlike Joaquin Phoenix’s in Her, Selleck’s facial hair has the perfect shape that subtly emphasizes his lips instead of looking like a lip-less Muppet. It’s OK, we won’t judge you if you’re swooning a little.
6. Brett Keisel
As the defensive end for the Pittsburgh Steelers, scoring a full-frontal view of Keisel’s beard is hard to come by. But without his helmet, it becomes apparent that this athlete has the Holy Grail of facial hair. After all, Steelers fans don’t use the phrase “fear the beard” lightly. A lengthy mustache (that is sometimes twisted almost to a caricature extent) and a voluminous beard that goes past the base of his neck? Let’s consider that a grooming mic-drop. Based on the thickness and length, our (not-so) scientific verdict is that it must take months to cultivate. So while it’s extremely unlikely your facial hair will resemble his in any way, it’s safe to say that this pick is definitely inspirational for even the most timid, scruff-adverse guy.
Follow Kelsey on Twitter @KMulvs