I began this column discussing the much-welcomed epidemic of the man bun. So it only seems fitting that I close the semester with an ode to another very welcomed trend. The past week marked two things: the beginning of the Christmas season and the unfortunate end to No Shave November. Now I realize that this sentiment may not resonate with everyone. I have been on Yik Yak enough to know that No Shave November is not everyone’s cup of tea. But can we take a moment to appreciate it?

Guys expect girls to embody every aspect of femininity. So, I think it’s only fair that women expect men to embody what it means to be masculine, and ladies and gentleman, the beard is key. Maybe it’s my New York roots or my Brooklyn obsession, but men with beards are far more alluring. Especially at Michigan, a clean-shaven guy just screams immature frat star, not that there’s anything wrong with that. But for me, not so much. Mysterious guys with manly beards just radiate a vibe of late night coffee chats and indie movies — a far cry from a night in a dingy frat basement.

Right now as I write this in the Fishbowl, I see them everywhere: frat stars and beards alike, and there is a certain aura that surrounds the beard. Hipster glasses, a ripped olive T-shirt, a ring or two on each hand, black combat boots — there is a sense of style, without being too overtly full of themselves, and the need for adventure amid the mundane tasks of college life.

Take a step back: Jared Leto, Jake Gyllenhaal, Justin Theroux, Michael Fassbender, Jon Hamm, Ben Affleck, the guy sitting across from me at the Fishbowl — all better with the scruff, all possessing the mighty power of the beard. For this phase of every college student’s life, a man with a beard is three things: your parents’ worst nightmare, the best few months of your life and a check mark off the bucket list. So, why the hell not?

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