Movember and No Shave November: Rules, Tips and Differences

For most of the year, shaving (and grooming) is just another part of life. Important, sure, but not often life saving. In November though, shaving's different. Or more to the point, not shaving. Whether it's a teeny mustache or a full blown beard, November is the month of the year when anyone's facial hair can help change the world.

Movember and No Shave November offer two different month-long ways to use your facial hair to raise funds and awareness for prostate cancer, colon cancer and men's mental health issues. Below we discuss them in more detail.

What's The Difference Between Movember and No Shave November?

man grooming beard

So, we have two choices, both concerning growing our facial hair, for the benefit of men's health issues, and both in November. So what exactly is the difference between Movember and No Shave November? Both seek to raise awareness and funds for cancer prevention, cancer research, and other men's issues, but the execution is slightly different.

The answer is as simple as where you grow the facial hair. If you prefer a neat mustache, then Movember is for you, but if growing a beard is more palatable then No Shave November's your guy. There's a little more to it, but we'll cover all of that later in the article.

What Is Movember And What Does It Support?

Movember was dreamt up in 2003 by a bunch of friends outside a Melbourne pub, and has gone on to become an international phenomenon. The idea is simple: to grow a moustache, in the month of November, and to have your friends, family and colleagues sponsor you for your efforts. By now I'm sure you've seen something on social media or a whip round in the office, and momentum has been growing year on year worldwide.

But how can facial hair help with men's health? By raising awareness and conducting research into key mens health areas such as prostate and testicular cancer, and suicide prevention, Movember has become the leading charity concerned solely with mens issues. They have raised a staggering $911 million worldwide in the 16 years since Movember began.

The point isn't just to raise money: moustaches are a natural talking point, and so by growing one you can not only gain sponsorship, but raise awareness of issues affecting men's health. Many cancer patients lose their lives simply because the issue wasn't caught early enough - and so awareness is a life saver. The same can be said of course with issues surrounding men's mental health.

What Are The Rules For Movember?

The rules for Movember, according to the Charities website, are simple.

  1. You must begin the month of Movember clean shaven.
  2. For the whole month of November, you must grow and groom your moustache - shaving other parts of your face is of course still required.
  3. Don't be a faker, play by the rules - goatees, beards or fake moustaches are not allowed. Moustaches only.
  4. Use your new moustache to start a conversation and raise awareness for men's health.
  5. Behave like a gentleman in your daily life.

Can I Grow A Beard For Movember?

Please see above - no, you cannot grow a beard for Movember. However, if that's your inclination, or if you simply can't face a tache but you want to do your bit this November, you are in luck: No Shave November has an opening for you!

Who Invented No Shave November and What Is The Meaning?

bearded man for Movember

No Shave November was born when Matthew Hill passed away from colon cancer in 2007. His children started the movement with the aim of raising funds and awareness. The idea is that men ditch their razor for the month of november and instead donate the money they would have spent shaving to cancer charities.

The foundation encourages others to celebrate their hair growth in remembrance of the hair loss many cancer patients suffer. Last year they donated to many major cancer charities including the Prevent Cancer Foundation, and raised $1.76 million for them alone.

What Are The Rules For No Shave November?

Just like Movember, No Shave November requires you to be clean shaven and 100% facial hair free on November 1. To be fully in compliance with the rules, no razor should touch your face before December 1st. Any money you would have spent on grooming, from the cost of razors and shaving cream right up to a $100 visit to the barber, should be donated to the cause. The beard you can keep.

Can You Trim Your Beard For No Shave November?

As the organisers want to encourage participation, and appreciate your place of work might require a stricter dress code, trimming, maintenance and some grooming are permitted. So long as over the month the beard is getting longer, you're good.

Are You Supposed To Shave Before No Shave November?

Yes, the idea is to start from scratch and see how far you can get. Of course, it is appreciated that this is the most troubling period of beard growth, but it's a small price to pay to combat prostate cancer and raise cancer awareness. And besides, follow our tips below and there's no need to suffer. In fact, you could use No Shave November as a launch pad for a more hirsute 2021, and do your bit at the same time.

How Do People Survive No Shave November?

trilogy beard kits beard growth

There are two main challenges we face when growing a beard from scratch. First, it's keeping the beard neat and tidy. Second, and much worse, is the dreaded beard itch. Thankfully a little beard maintenance can go a long way in the early stages. So before November 1, stock up on some decent beard grooming products: a beard wash, and a good quality beard oil. This will help to relieve the itching. The wash will keep your bristles soft, and the oil will moisturise your beard and your skin, all of which will go a long way in relieving the itchy feeling. Growing a moustache instead? Keep your moustache perfectly styled with our moustache wax.

If your beard is patchy, it's fine to trim back a little. And if you're blessed with fast growth, nothing forbids you from taming it a little. So long as you have the excuse though, you might as well let it go wild and free.

Wondering about how to groom your brand-new beard and moustache? Our guide to beard care and grooming products will get you sorted.

Where Can I Donate For No Shave November and Movember?

If you'd like to get involved yourself, or just donate to the cause, check out the links below:

Movember - sign up to grow a Mo yourself or just make a donation at The Movember Foundation official fundraising page.

No Shave November - down your razor for a month or just give them your hard earned dollars here, it's all for a good cause.

Ready to start growing and grooming your 'tache this November? Check out the Bearded Chap's full range of beard grooming products today.

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