"Peak beard" has been reached, at least according to a recent story from the BBC. And apparently, economic and evolutionary principles are to blame.

"The more beards there are, the less attractive they become—giving clean-shaven men a competitive advantage, say scientists in Sydney, Australia … . When 'peak beard' frequency is reached, the pendulum swings back toward lesser-bristled chins—a trend we may be witnessing now, the scientists say."

Does this spell doom for pastors with beards? Not yet—and there's a future in stubble. The researchers' latest study reveals "Heavy stubble seemed to be the best in our last study. Maybe a 5-10 day growth."

BBC is not the only one to see beards coming to an end. Time posted a mournful article saying,

"Every male on earth should bristle at the news that beards are going out of fashion … . Just think what men would be losing if the beard was to slip out of fashion. A proud symbol of masculinity, that you can wear on your face, for the whole world to see. A whole new area of self-expression, where you can display your individuality through architectural grooming. A mask to cover unsightly blemishes, or an unusually large medial cleft. A facial trompe l'oeil to give the appearance of a chin."

He also warns of the trend that preceded the beard … the mustache. (Do we really want to have the Magnum P.I. look reign supreme again?)

Whether you mourn "peak beard" or rejoice, make sure to check out Leadership Journal's very own "Beards of Ministry."

Research  |  Trends
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