Chuck your razors this November

Clement Nathan, Dino Romario, Praveen

Chennai: The trending hashtag #noshavenovember is now back on all social media websites and more young adults are adopting it to follow the trend as well as contribute their mite for a good cause. Although the trend started many years back with no particular reason, from 2007 it has benefited cancer patients.

This is a great tradition but the real No-Shave November meaning and significance often gets lost among all the jokes, hashtags and hype created by the media.

It appears that many men don’t even know why they are doing it. Some use it as an excuse not to shave for a whole month.
The No-Shave November is a good way to show one’s concern for cancer patients.

Vikram, a student of a private college and one of the enthusiasts who follows ‘No-Shave November’, says, “Almost all middle-aged persons cut their hair once a month and shave their beard twice a week. Convert this to currency and you can see that they spend an average of Rs 800 – Rs 1,000 every month on this. By avoiding cutting and shaving, this amount can be deposited in the ‘No-Shave November’ foundation’s bank account. This amount will be spent for cancer patient’s welfare. So, every year, I follow this and also ask my friends also to do so.”

Like Vikram, many are aware of this and do it for a good cause. But there are also those who follow ‘No-Shave November’ to keep up with the current trend. Mostly, college-goers fall in this group.

MEMES ARE THE MESSAGE
Many memes are coming up regarding No-Shave November which makes it trend. Many youngsters claim that they came to know about No-Shave November from memes. But the memes can have more social responsibility so that everyone will follow this by knowing the exact reason for the no-shave, says Venkat, a college-goer.

“At first there was no particular motive. This is the second year I am following this. Though I was not aware of the reason behind this last year, now I know that the cause is noble. I plan to join the movement in future also and donate the money.”

“I am one who is active on social media and follows trends. Inspired by my college seniors, I started following this two years back. Motivated by the ‘likes’ I get for my posts, I continue to follow this trend this year also. Some of our friends view it as a competition to see who grows the best beard,” laughs Harish, a college-goer.

TREND CONVERTED INTO CAUSE
No-Shave November has been a tradition for many years, but it was not until the Fall of 2009 that members of the Chicagoland Hill family decided to use it as a means to raise money for charity. It was a project that held special meaning to the eight Hill children after their father, Matthew Hill, passed away from colon cancer in November 2007.Participants in No-Shave November have always been willing to ditch their razors and more recently, donate to cancer fighting foundations. But what started as an easy way for a few followers on Facebook to donate their hard-earned money has turned into a nationwide celebration. Every November, for the past 10 years, these No-Shavers have donated the cost of grooming and helped the organisation raise millions to date. As a family-run, web-based organisation (no-shave.org), No-Shave November has grown exponentially since 2009.

However, the goal is to keep raising money for cancer prevention, education and research and to let that hair grow in the process.

 

GIRLS LIKE IT
Equally, girls seem to look forward to this season. Most young women claim that they like bearded faces more than clean shaven ones. “As we girls donate our hair to the cancer foundation, I think this is a great concept for their benefit. Moreover, I like a bearded face more and they look hot this way,” says Lakshmi, a college-goer.

Another, college-goer, Maunika, says, “Bearded men are attractive. And it is appreciable that some do this for a cause. It would be better if social media spreads the message that this is more than just a trend.”

 

BENEFITS
* While growing the beard for the month, people likely to tell other people about why they are doing it. It is a great conversation starter, and can really generate a huge awareness about cancer.
* If you’re doing it right, you’re donating money to cancer research.
* You’re gaining health benefits. There is more to growing the beard than just getting a new look. A beard is a natural toxin filter – it keeps things like pollen and dust from getting into your lungs, because they’re clinging to your beard instead.
* It can also help cover blemishes.
* Shaving gives you a risk of getting bacteria into your skin, especially if you’re not using proper methods. Growing out a beard can combat this.
* November is when the cold weather starts and so a beard can act like a scarf for your face and neck.
         

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