Air Force Acknowledges Mustache March Legend

The annual rite of facial hair abandon known as “Mustache March” may be officially and technically over for the year, but it’s still going strong in spirit, and on the faces of proud deniers now deep into Mustache Mapril revelry.

Just when you thought it was safe to go outside clean-shaven comes the revelation that the U.S. Air Force, or at least one unit within it, released a video acknowledging the existence of Mustache March and the official connection between the military branch and the now simultaneously beloved and reviled tradition.

Check out the Air Force Mustache March video at

It’s still Mustache Mapril for two more weeks, to be followed by Mustache May, Mune, Muly, Maugust, Meptember, Moctober, Movember (recognized outside fanatic circles), Mecember, Manuary and Mebruary. Bear in mind that for those ashamed to have shaved “prematurely,” still shamelessly supports mustache junkies with prosthetics that may actually outshine what you were, are or believe to be capable of growing yourself.

End of a Presidential Mustache Legacy

President William Howard Taft may not have known it, but when he left office in March 2013, he took the presidential mustache with him.

President William Howard Taft may not have known it, but when he left office in March 2013, he took the presidential mustache with him. (Photo courtesy of the U.S. National Archives)

America bid farewell to mustaches in the Oval Office 100 years ago this month with the departure of President William Howard Taft, the nation’s last leader to sport facial hair of any kind while in office. As a bellwether of national trends, presidential styles help establish what is acceptable, popular and admirable.

America has long held men of mustachioed magnificence in high regard, some of them celebrated to this day. Take Taft’s predecessor, President Theodore Roosevelt, the adventuring man’s man, legendary in his horseback-riding and gun-slinging, love of hunting and of wild lands. Once shot in the abdomen immediately before a scheduled campaign speech, Roosevelt famously opted to forgo hospitalization to deliver 90 minutes of oratory, bleeding through his shirt as he spoke. He clearly was a man who lived the philosophy, “with great mustache comes great responsibility.”

Albert Einstein, a man whose mind single-handedly advanced the course of civilization, too found might in a nose neighbor. Eccentric painter Salvador Dali, with his famed upside-down handlebar mustache, and Charlie Chaplain, renown silent-film comic star, both delighted the public in part through mustachery. Later on, “talkie” actor Tom Selleck wielded his own mustache against criminal scum in a T-top Ferrari.

Geraldo Rivera, a rare modern mustachioed professional, carries on the tradition of fashionable, high-profile mustaches with his broad, bold statement of shaving defiance. Each of these men deserves a plastic mustache in their honor. You’ll find them at Geraldo’s and Dali’s will be easy to find — and Tom Selleck’s, well, that’s “The Captain.”

Think you can find the rest?

April Fools Day — 2,500 Years of Tomfoolery

The tradition of silliness that is April Fools Day offers a welcome opportunity to eschew seriousness.

The tradition of silliness that is April Fools Day offers a welcome opportunity to eschew seriousness.

April Fools Day takes different names and forms, but the concept of a day of pranks and silliness has been around for centuries — possibly dating back to 536 BC. Iranians treat the 13th day of the Persian new year, which falls on April 1 or 2, as a holiday for pranking familiar to much of the western world. Called Sizdah Be-dar, the holiday is focused mostly on celebrating the start of the spring season, but among its traditions is prankery.

Similar traditions are celebrated throughout the world, including in Belgium, Italy, France and French-speaking Canada, where it’s common to attach paper fish to victims’ backs surreptitiously as a joke. References to the day in these nations make direct reference to fish, such as “Pesce d’Aprile” in Italian.

Traditions vary, including the extreme practice in Belgian Flemish culture of children locking their parents out of their homes with a demand of treats in exchange for entry. Light-heartedness, though, is typically the order of the day. What better way to inspire merriment than to cavort about with a perpetual smile, a la “The Tease,” or a big silly inspector’s mustache and monocle? Check ’em out at, where there’s a 20% off sale through the end of March.

However you celebrate April 1, have fun!

The legendary origin of Mustache March

Mustache legend

U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen. Robin Olds defied regulations in protest by wearing a grand handlebar mustache. Eventually a general told him to ditch it, but not before inspiring what’s now military tradition in March.

As we near the annual facial-hair dare known as “Mustache March,” let’s take a quick look back at the man many would say gave birth to the movement, through unabashed mustachioed defiance.

United States Air Force Brigadier General Robin Olds, famed for his defiantly out-of-regulation mustache during the Vietnam War, inspired fellow airmen to grow mustaches of their own, instilling a spirit of camaraderie. The bond the mustache forged among the men was enough for those higher up in the chain of command to ignore the obvious defiance of facial hair regulation. That is, until Olds returned home, when a general commanded him, finger pointed directly at the famed mustache, to get rid of it. Olds, having grown tired of the mustache anyway, replied simply, “Yes, sir.”

His defiant, heavily waxed handlebar mustache, which stretched beyond the edge of his lips in violation of grooming standards, was said to be a protest against the Air Forces’ inadequate pilot training and lackluster support. More importantly, it’s believed this defiant ‘stache gave birth to Mustache March, an annual tradition in the Air Force, which spread to the other American service branches and the general public, when men grow mustaches as a bonding exercise, in defiance of clean-shaven normalcy.

Olds lived a truly manly life, flying in an open-air biplane at the age of 8 and pledging to become a pilot, excelling at football while at West Point Military Academy, earning a place in the College Football Hall of Fame. He married a Hollywood actress, Ella Raines, and had a generally high-profile life as an accomplished battle-tested fighter pilot in World War II and Vietnam. He earned acclaim as the top wing commander in the latter conflict as a man who knew how to command the respect of his subordinates and contemporaries.

Though his mustache was said to give him superpowers, possibly even immortality, he died of natural causes in 2007, leaving the world to speculate whether it was the mustache that made him great, or if he made the mustache great.

Mustache March is also the namesake of an organized charity mustache-growing competition based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, which donates money raised during the month-long nose neighbor cultivation exercise to Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer. Moustache March, the other accepted spelling, is the namesake of an organization based in Oregon that, too, uses March-focused mustache growing as a means of fundraising for charity, including the American Cancer Society. Along the same lines, there’s Mustache Movember, a global organization focused on raising money for testicular and prostate cancer research.

Though no one knows who invented the mustache, modern mustache popularity is almost certainly attributable to Robin Olds, to whom, in the spirit of all the mustache embodies, we say thank you. In celebration of Mustache March, Whisker Works will hold a sale with special promotional pricing on top quality mustaches, to help less-endowed gentlemen and ladies honor Olds’ legacy.

For more on Mustache March and Robin Olds, please see:

National Museum of the United States Air Force

National Aviation Hall of Fame

Mustache March Wikipedia Article

Mustache Movember

Happy New Year!

As we bid adieu to a fine two-oh-one-two, find below a bit o’inspiration for your celebration! I mustache that you have a happy new year and a grand 2013!

Photo credits:
Happy New Year banner: Etsy
Confetti toss: Wedding Chicks
Scallop garland: Etsy
Balloon wall: Pinterest
New Year photo booth: Lowe’s
Silver heart backdrop: Cargo Collective

A holiday full of sparkle and pizazz

By pinning metallic pennant flags (the kind you see at grand opening events) to a wall, photographer Christa Elyse created this brightly-colored backdrop, full of sparkle and pizazz. “I went to the dollar store and picked up some odd Christmas things and also pulled out my old school light bulbs. I set up my camera on a tripod and put on the timer!” The result? A holiday photo booth that is full of merriment and cheer.

An alternate idea would be to purchase a thin sheet of wood from a home improvement store and staple gun your shimmery material to it. Then, because your board is double-sided, you can create two different backgrounds for your event.

Much thanks to Christa Elyce for sharing her delightful images.
Christa Elyse Photography / Facebook

Smile and ‘stache props from Whisker Works.

A Bit of Free Social Whimsy

If you place a new order from the Whisker Works prop shop, you’ll find something extra in your package! For the remainder of 2012, all orders will include a double-sided, full-color postcard greeting, just waiting to be mailed to a friend. “This holiday season, let it grow, let it grow, let it grow.”

Starting in 2013, all orders will include a postcard that reads “With a mustache in your pocket, you’ll never face the embarrassment of being underdressed.”

Big thanks to PrintPlace for these beautiful, high-quality cards! Anna, you were a pleasure to work with.

Whisker Works Cyber Monday Sale!

Whisker Works is offering up a 40% storewide Cyber Monday discount today only (Nov. 26). So this year, stuff your stockings with ‘staches! Visit the Prop Shop to take advantage of this generous offer.

Start shopping here! Standard prop designs are just $3.60 each, today only.

I Mustache You To Vote

Happy voting day, America!

Enjoy this free chalkboard sign download (below) and encourage your friends to vote! It’s designed to print on a standard 8.5 x 11″ sheet of paper. White card stock is recommended. Once printed, just cut out your sign and spread the message.

Download the high-resolution file here.

Vote today!

Mustaches are Hereditary

Mustaches must run in my family, because my kid sister is sprouting some whiskers too. She just opened up her shop on Etsy, Wee Hilarity, selling mustache pacifiers for wee ones. Know any babies in desperate need of a ‘stache?

Visit the Wee Hilarity shop to support the ‘stacheless babies you know.

Portrait photos are courtesy Julie Sharek. Her handsome little dude, Fox, turned one on 16 July. Happy birthday, Fox!