Travel

If You Can't Grow a Beard Like These, You Might as Well Shave

Christophe Gateau's photos from the 2013 World Beard and Moustache Championships.

by Christophe Gateau, Assistant: Thomas Lévesque
Jun 13 2016, 2:35pm

This article was originally published by VICE Germany.

A few years ago, I heard my grandma say that she doesn't "like beards because men hide behind them." I thought that was an interesting thought, so I decided to investigate by visiting the World Beard and Moustache Championships that took place in Stuttgart back in November 2013.

After photographing 70 men, I felt that my grandma might have had a point. Some of my subjects were proudly displaying and talking about their beards, but others kept mumbling, hidden behind their facial hair. I only took three pictures of each person. All of the guys I photographed were unique characters, coming from all around the world and all walks of life. Here are 30 of the 70 portraits I took that time in Stuttgart.

Scroll down for more photos.

Keith J. "Gandhi Jones" Hanbrich—had been growing his beard for 27 years—styling time: 30 minutes

Nick Thomas—had been growing his beard for two years—styling time: two minutes

Sam Holcombe—had been growing his beard for six years—styling time: one hour

Aarne Bielefeldt—had been growing his beard since it started growing—styling time: six hours

Damien Knight—had been growing his beard for six years—styling time: 20 minutes

Fulio—had been growing his beard for five years—styling time: 20 minutes

Eric Jansson—had been growing his beard for three years—styling time: one hour

Hans Peter Weis—had been growing his beard for 15 years—styling time: three hours

Benjamin Juergens—had been growing his beard for two years—styling time: 45 minutes

Phil Olsen—had been growing his beard for 14 years—styling time: ten minutes

Drew Muncaster—had been growing his beard for three years—styling time: 20 minutes

Michael Wallage—had been growing his beard for 20 years—styling time: 40 minutes

Selim Trygve—had been growing his beard for 3.5 years—styling time: five minutes

Ted Sedman—had been growing his beard for 50 years—styling time: 15 minutes

Fritz Sendhofer—had been growing his beard for 20 years—styling time: zero minutes

Sean Raiger —has been growing his beard for five years—styling time: ten minutes

Jared MacDonald—had been growing his beard for 3.5 years—styling time: one hour

Al Underwood—had been growing his beard for 25 years—styling time: 30 minutes

Norbert Topf—had been growing his beard for 11 years—styling time: 15 hours

Reinhard Hess—had been growing his beard for 40 years—styling time: 15 minutes

Stefan Hofmeister—had been growing his beard for 21 years—styling time: 15 minutes

Paul Roof—had been growing his beard for nine years—styling time: two hours

Jerg Egon—had been growing his beard for 40 years—styling time: ten minutes

Mike Yeomans—had been growing his beard for 11 months—styling time: 45 minutes

Roland van der Bremt—had been growing his beard since it started growing—styling time: 30 minutes

John Dickson—had been growing his beard for ten years—styling time: five minutes

Collin McArolle—had been growing his beard for four years—styling time: five minutes

Erwin Butsch—had been growing his beard for ten years—styling time: one hour

Felix Hammoge—had been growing his beard for two years—styling time: nine minutes