Are beards bad for you?

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They are fashionable for men, and can even make you appear more knowledgeable during hunting season.

We're talkin' about beards!

But now experts are warning they`re breeding grounds for bacteria and can even spread bugs.

Beards are in, from the hottest stars and athletes, to every day people.

Many ladies are giving the look a big thumbs up.

But beard wearers, beware -- it may be a good look -- but there's more to it than just looking good.

Dr. Daniel Yadager says there could be health issues related to beard wearing. The coarseness of beard hair can provide a ripe environment for bacteria.

"I think things get trapped in there so bacteria can be trapped in there and can grow as a result."

Beard bacteria can by transmitted to the mouth and possibly cause illness...and it can also be transmitted to others.

"Well, viruses can be passed from person to person through contact and a beard would be a point of contact for that. And having a beard can sometimes lead to skin infections."

It's called folliculitis. It's a painful inflammation caused by ingrown beard hairs.

Experts say there's no need to ditch the beard all together.

"There's some pretty shady beards running around these days."

Men's Health Magazine editor Brian Boye says upkeep is the key to preventing problems.

"Wash it regularly, keep it conditioned with hair conditioner or beard oil, those are the two simplest things you can do."

He says some men think a beard is less work than shaving, but that's not true....and he says if you're not up for the upkeep....cleanshaven is the way to go."

6 comments

  • boostnchaps

    Ewww, bacteria!! Are we in another ratings sweeps period? Such a fluff and filler piece. It’s not like the surface of the body is otherwise bacteria free. Foliculitis happens at hair follicles, not just at beard hairs. Facial hair takes cleaning and maintenance, just like hair in general does. I have a long chin beard-it is work but a lot less than having to shave twice a day to be “cleanshaven”. And the year ’round Santa and ZZTop comments can be fun.

  • Thomas

    How about adding a little more information when putting stories out like this, like the other side of the story. Wash your beard with shampoo, then use a 2 in 1 beard conditioner if you want to go one step further. Which now are being sold locally (example: Riteaid). Then you can order beard oil which there are many different scents out there or just use 100% Jojoba oil which is the base for most oils that you buy. Jojoba oil is great for hair, skin and scalp and have no scent. You can find this oil at most health stores. Then get a brush for your beard, nothing fancy just a brush just for your beard to get that oil though the beard and to the skin. If you are going to have a beard then spend less that twenty dollars and you have all that you need to have a health beard. This germ issue is strange to me because every part of your body is a place for the growth of germs. I would only see an issue if you did not follow normal grooming habits and then I would think that maybe you have other issues to worry about. I have a beard that’s not to far from getting tangled up in my belt buckle and must say to my bearded brothers … Rock those beards like a lion rocks his main.

  • Jaybird

    Men have been wearing beards for centuries. It’s funny in this day and time how we blow everything out of proportion. My husband has a beard. He keeps his very close and clean. He doesn’t get sick no more than I or our kids do. Ingrown hairs can happen anywhere on the body and even us women can get them. The surface of the human body has germs. If I’m correct we even carry staph on our skin. I’ve never known anyone with a beard to get or stay sick from it.

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