The Evolution of the Lumbersexual

It's time to put down the razor and just let it grow.
It’s time to put down the razor and just let it grow.

By Erika Hayes

If you occasionally step outside of your residence and it isn’t a rock, you may have noticed the latest fashion revolution, the Lumbersexual. According to the Urban Dictionary, a Lumbersexual is a metro-sexual who has the need to hold on to some outdoor-based ruggedness, thus opting to keep a finely-trimmed beard. In layman’s terms, subtly trimmed beards left with just enough edginess to be classified by the talking fashion heads as “on trend.”

From corporate America to the big screen, men have graciously put down their razors and permitted their facial hair to grow, just wild enough to possess an unorthodox flair. I know what you’re thinking. “I’ve been growing my beard long before this fad.” I’d thought you might say that.

As much as you would love to take credit for your keen style intuition, it looks like a few individuals have beaten you to the punch. As it turns out, there appeared to be Lumbersexuals before the term was even coined. Here are nine famous individuals (19th century through present day) who blazed the Lumbersexual trail before its existence. (Disclaimer: The following men were and are highly unaware of the trend to which they are unintentionally attributed).

Abraham Lincoln
Yes that’s correct, as in the 16th president of the free world for you history buffs out there. Four score and seven years ago, President Abe Lincoln, a.k.a. the “Forefather of Lumbersexuals” revolutionized facial hair as we know it. He singlehandedly proved that bearded fellows could rule the world, besides, would you trust him without it?

Walt Whitman
Those who possess innovative talent tend to catch criticism for their unconventional ideas and unsettling appearances. So it should be of no surprise to you that Mr. Whitman has made the cut. The 19th century poet and essayist became synonymous with his unkempt, long, white beard in his later years. Despite his exterior, Walt was celebrated as one of America’s notable literary talents. I guess people were afraid they would end up on the naughty list if they didn’t embrace him.

Charles Darwin
This naturalist’s facial mane evolved just as frequently as his theory on the evolution of man. Darwin’s scruffy beard could have possibly placed him in direct competition with Whitman in the Kris Kringle look-alike contest of 1870.

Clint Eastwood
Who could forget about Dirty Harry? As a western movie icon, Mr. Eastwood’s jagged, unfiltered roles in films such as The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, easily upgraded both his beard and cinematic performances to that of legendary status.

Jerome John “Jerry” Garcia
The deceased Grateful Dead rocker unapologetically dawned a head and face full of ruffled dark hair in his heyday. Garcia’s beard not only became a trademark of the talented musician but it also became a symbol of individualism and freedom during a period of civil unrest in our nation’s history.

Jonathan Goldsmith
If you’re a whiz kid with television taglines, or just an avid beer guzzler, you know this man. Goldsmith plays a debonair gentleman, who was dubbed by the Dos Equis advertising campaign as “Most Interesting Man in the World.” Goldsmith’s silver beard has given a new meaning to aging gracefully. His gray facial hair serves as a beacon of hope to millions of “mature men” who have been fighting the inevitable war against their natural color progression. Stay hopeful my friends.

Matthew McConaughey
Women can’t get enough of his rugged good looks. If you consider yourself a “Lumber Servant,” he would be your “Lumber King.” McConaughey resuscitated the state of the modern beard in his most recent advertising campaign for the 2015 Lincoln Balance and critics are digging the new look. Spelling pop quiz, what do the letters b-e-a-r-d spell? Success.

Ryan Gosling
If Gosling had no retirement fund prior to the 2004 release of The Notebook, rest assured he does now. His unconventional, rugged and croon worthy appearances in this flick stole the hearts of women around the world, and solidified his sexual iconic status in Hollywood. His popularity soared after his romantic flick, and he went on to make a number of box office movies, arguably making him the most relevant Lumbersexual to date. What’s that noise? Sounds like razors dropping into bathroom trashcans across America.

James Harden
The Houston Rockets shooting guard is a newcomer to the Lumbersexual society. Both Mr. Harden’s phenomenal basketball skills and his wildly kept beard command attention as he barrels down the court. Rumor has it that he first began growing his facial hair because he was too lazy to shave. His facial mane has become both a personal trademark and a corporate sponsorship goldmine to brands such as Nike and BodyArmor SuperDrink.