Celebrate Movember and Let Your Teen Grow a Mustache for Charity
If you’ve never grown a moustache for charity, you’re missing out on the hipster social event of the humanitarian calendar! Just ask your teenage son for a primer. Even if you’re not a flannel-wearing, card-carrying mixologist with a penchant for Mumford and Sons, you can still join the moustachioed crew for the month by refusing to shave.
The month-long Movember season (in November) originated in Australia in 1999. The classic Marathon-for-charity scenario challenges men to raise awareness for prostate cancer and other men’s health issues by growing a moustache and, with the cache provided by that generous lip hair, encouraging others to donate to men’s healthcare organizations through the Movember Foundation.
So if your teen has been dying to grow some fuzz and needs some expert advice from a gentleman such as yourself, this is the perfect time to help him become manly, while building healthy habits for the future.
The Month of Hair
This is the moment your son has been waiting for. Make a trip to the barber and start things off right. You may consult with your favorite male shearer to learn about the best cuts and trims for your lip hair so you can have a DIY strategy for the month.
Then, outfit your son with the finest in razor blades, clippers, trimmers, shaving cream, and styling wax (for those outrageous looks). Now, you’re prepared for everything Movember has to offer. Things at home may be rough for the next few weeks, but encourage your son, shave alongside him, and let him develop his own style.
Approach creamy, sticky, and sugary foods and beverages with care during the month. After all – it doesn’t take much for a moustache to spiral out of control! Keep those hairs in check by properly grooming your ‘stache. Regular shampooing, conditioning, and hot towel steaming are mandatory!
Different styles of moustaches, like the handlebar, mutton chops, regent, or rock star are popular with hipsters of all ages with hair-growing abilities. Copycat celebrity ‘staches are all too prevalent as well. Consult the Mo Style Guide for help.
Beware of your teenager’s propensity to fall prey to hipster trends, though. If he starts the precedent of a cheesy moustache at 17 (refrain from calling it a “pornstache,” that will just encourage him!), it may become a fashion statement for more years than you would like to think about!
The Month of Charity
Mens’ healthcare has become an increasingly popular topic over the past decade or so, perhaps due to the popularity of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and associated movements dealing with women’s health. Regardless of the reason, a troubling statistic underlies it: men die an average of six years younger than women, which is troubling for everyone.
Movember was started with a focus on testicular and prostate cancer, which is the second most common cancer among men worldwide. Today, that focus has widened to include men’s mental health and inactivity, both top concerns that lead to debilitating health problems.
Proceeds from Movember events and individual donations have funded projects and foundations in 21 countries like cancer research, genetic pre-screening, psychological studies, and even documentaries. The funded projects are locally-based all over the world. Donors can direct funds to an individual MoBro (whose funds will go where the participant chooses), a project listed on the site, or to the general fund to be dispersed equally.
Besides giving money, Movember provides many challenges for men, particularly in regards to inactivity (Move in Movember is a fitness plan) and ways that you can bring awareness of men’s health issues to your work, school, or community. Check the Movember website for ideas.
More than Just Hair
Poor mental health is maybe the most understated but important concern of Movember. Three quarters of suicides are carried out by men, in addition to the mass shootings and other horrendous outbursts we see in the news. And yes, charities can help here, but you can commit to making a difference on a personal level, too.
Helping your teen develop healthy habits in his life will go a long way towards preventing serious health problems – both physical and mental ones – in the future.
So dad, will you and your son be participating in Movember this month? Share photos of those mean moustaches in the comments!