If you currently rock a beard or are considering one, this might give you second thoughts. And ruin your appetite.

A recent swab testing conducted by John Golobic of Quest Diagnostics, on behalf KOAT News, discovered that the vast amount of beards tested carried bacteria with them.

While most were of the average variety that all faces have, some were found to have fecal matter and bacteria that can cause urinary tract infections.

Studies on whether or not beards are clean are pretty conflicted.

Dr. Carol Walker, a consultant trichologist, believes that beards act as a trap for bacteria which, in turn, gives you infections back to yourself despite cleaning.

However, this contradicts Hugh Pennington, a bacteriology professor, who believes that beards are no more clean or dirty than those with a cleanshaven face.

A landmark study in 1967 by Dr. Manuel Barbeito showed that even if you clean your face-mane vigorously, you're still harbouring bacteria.

There's more - another more recent study conducted in Australia documented that women were more likely to be attracted to heavy stubble in men as opposed to a full face of beard.

Despite this, however, that survey showed that women thought men with beards were more masculine and more inclined to be parents.

So, the solution? Shave off half your beard and hedge your bets. It'll mean you no longer look like one of those people that hangs around outside Fibbers / Workman's / local hipster haunt in your area.


Via KOAT / Sci-ence.org