For one-twelfth of their lives, men all across the world are choosing to sport lip hair for a good cause – Movember. Movember began in Australia in 2003 as a movement to bring back the much-maligned moustache, and has quickly spread across the world to raise funds for prostate cancer. Not unlike commitments to do physical activity for other charities, Movember represents a physical commitment to wear a cheesy, often horrifying moustache in public for a full 30 days. This despite the chagrin of women everywhere, especially those trying to get family portraits done before the holidays.
The Movember movement has reached men in all walks of life – from the guy across the street to the guy on TV. NHL players were seen sporting miniaturized versions of their playoff beards in their SportsCenter interviews (the Calgary Flames even had Lanny MacDonald and his legendary stache judging their efforts) while Ottawa’s top Movember fundraiser (raising $11,000 personally) was a news reader for the CBC. In the UK, a Royal Air Force crew revived the WWII years through their Movember moustaches, despite the presence of lip hair being against the Queen’s regulations. Even Canadian Parliamentarians got in to the act.
This year, Canada topped the fundraising list with over $19 million (CAD) raised, outpacing Australia by nearly a full million. The United Kingdom rounded out the top three, raising $11 million. All funds raised are donated to country-specific prostate cancer charities.
And today, December 1, the entire country breathes a sigh of relief. The Mos are gone for another year.
Canadian MPs Justin Trudeau and Dominic Leblanc sporting Movember moustaches. Credit: Handout, Postmedia News.