The number of men who don’t shave at all has increased across all age groups and stands at approximately 20% of all men. Though a lot of these men aren’t shaving because they are, for lack of a better term … lazy, there are plenty of men who pride themselves on their facial hair prowess.
Some of these bearded folk can even use their powers for good, directly benefiting charities.
One Fredericksburg, Virginia, man is a big guy with tattoos and a long red beard. Some people avoid this type of person, but that’s exactly why you shouldn’t judge a book by its beard. Shannon “ShanMan” Sullivan might look like a big, scary, tough guy, but he has actually raised more than $100,000 for charities, including the Fredericksburg Food Bank, the Mary Washington Cancer Center, the Grace Oughton Cancer Foundation, and several other pediatric cancer organizations.
How does Sullivan raise all this money? Competitive bearding, of course.
“Who would have thought that having a beard would make me able to help people,” said Sullivan.
Sullivan’s Alaskan Whaler beard just won seventh place at the 2018 Great American Beard and Mustache Championship, which is a biannual event held in September celebrating excellence in facial hair across North America. Beard competitions involve facial hair-growers to go head-to-head to determine who has the strongest, biggest, longest, or most elaborately styled beard. But its main purpose is to raise money for those in need.
Sullivan, now 42 years old, has had some sort of facial hair for at least 20 years.
“It’s just always been my style,” he added. “I’ve never had a mustache, either. Girls always said they liked to see my smile.”
He has entered 23 beard contests, won 11 of them, and placed in 18.
“I like helping people,” he added. “I got a nice beard, I can do this. My life has totally changed because of this.”