What your ?chinderwear? says about you

Dante Frattini

Handlebar Mustache

Perhaps the most famous of all novelty facial hair stylings, the handlebar mustache is a clear indicator that its owner is nothing short of awesome. Strange? Sure. Daring? Most definitely. A Reno bartender from 1884? Possibly. But no one grows a mustache like that unless they’re willing to take on all of the stares, questions and jokes. The character one gains from nurturing that glorious lip ornament far surpasses any negative connotations associated with the classic Western look. The handlebar mustache is worn with the utmost pride, and rightly so. It takes a big man to admit he’s not fit for the era in which he was born. And that man is offering mustache rides.

Full beard

I have beard envy in the same way some girls have penis envy (I said “some” girls, so every angry feminist out there can just calm down and crank up their Lilith Fair compilation). I know the penis envy analogy doesn’t totally work because my beard jealousy is of the same gender, but if you consider that there are actually girls out there who can grow more facial hair than me, it almost makes sense.

Every time I see a beard my mind gets caught in a struggle between awe and envy. So lustrous, yet so unattainable. For some reason, the beard had been in an inexplicable lull, but thanks to indie rock and “Deadliest Catch,” beards have made a triumphant comeback into mainstream manliness.

Mutton chops

If I were a style of facial hair, I’d be the mutton chop. These overgrown sideburns are initially met with great excitement, briefly rock the party and then quickly wear out their welcome. Also, I’m pretty sure mutton chop removal is step five of most 12-step programs. If you want to kick the alcohol habit, you have to shave the chops. I know you don’t like the thought of removing the one thing that makes you seem more interesting than you really are, but you’ll be better off for it. Once you’re sober you’ll realize that saying “lick my chops” was never really that funny. Nevertheless, I don’t know that I’ve met a man with chops who wasn’t fun. Mutton chops are a young man’s game, and if you have the ability, I encourage you to get your game on.

Chin-strap

Discussing this offensive piece of chinderwear absolutely appalls me. If you’re unfamiliar with the “chin strap,” it’s that barely-there strip of beard that follows the jawline from one sideburn to the other, and is normally seen on guys in gyms wearing Affliction tees. I think of it like the Macarena. I have no idea where it came from and I can’t fathom how it got so popular. Also, like the Macarena, it highlights the horrible consumer choices made by our society. Stores wouldn’t have carried Macarena CDs unless they were selling, just like guys wouldn’t grow chin straps unless it got them laid. It’s simple economics &- supply and demand. Ladies, you control the market. Do you think you could do our society a favor and put the chin strap industry out of business?

5 o’clock shadow

When I see someone with a 5 o’clock shadow I can always safely assume that it is not 5 p.m. I think guys who show up to a morning class with carefully groomed stubble must have to plan their lives around their shaving schedule. A constant 5 o’clock shadow takes dedication, and I admire that. I normally don’t admire the rest of the Adam Levine look-alike set, but kudos to anyone who plans on shaving at the same time every afternoon. Everyone benefits from this effort, as we are all able to appreciate the look of a Hollywood leading man … while we order drinks from him at Starbucks.

Dante Frattini can be reached at [email protected]