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Does Facial Hair Interfere with Drinking?

Updated May 17, 2024
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Male beer drinkers might want to consider shaving before heading to the bar, at least according to the results of an unusual study commissioned by Guinness.

The iconic brewery tasked Dr. Robin Dover, a specialist in hair and dermatology, with determining how much of its famous Irish stout stayed behind in drinkers' mustaches after sipping. The results were staggering: in the United Kingdom alone, a collective 162,719 pints of Guinness get stuck in facial hair every year.

After studying eight men with mustaches over the course of two days, Dover found that each sip of Guinness left behind approximately 0.56 milliliters (0.019 fluid ounces) in the drinker's facial hair. Over the course of a year, the average mustachioed Guinness drinker traps the equivalent of a pint and a half of the black stuff.

Dover's work was quite detailed, and considered the size, shape, and density of different mustaches. For example, a walrus mustache in the style of cricketer W.G. Grace held onto the monetary equivalent of $36.34 USD (£27.48) of beer per year, while the more manageable George Michael-type 'stache grabbed about $12.11 USD (£9.16) of Guinness annually.

For those not wanting to waste even a drop, perhaps the only mustache a man needs is the one left behind on the upper lip after taking a healthy sip of Guinness.

The goods on Guinness:

  • Despite often being described as black or dark brown, Guinness is actually a ruby red-colored brew, thanks to the roasted barley it contains.

  • The United Kingdom is the biggest consumer of Guinness, followed by Ireland, Nigeria, the United States, and Cameroon.

  • Guinness World Records (originally The Guinness Book of World Records) came about following a 1951 argument involving Sir Hugh Beaver, then the managing head of Guinness Brewery in Dublin. During a shooting party, Beaver and his hosts couldn't agree on the fastest game bird in Europe, and couldn't find the answer in any reference book.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By dimchild — On Aug 19, 2020

Interesting! It never occured to me the name Guinness in the Guinness World Records could have any relationship with the popular largess in the former British Empire and her former colonies. Good information.

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