The Art of Manliness Movember Contest 2009

by Brett & Kate McKay on October 27, 2009 · 38 comments

in Blog


Every time I turn on a football game, I see players with pink shoelaces and pink gloves and pink towels, all promoting breast cancer awareness. I’m all for saving the world’s wonderful tata’s, but men have a cancer all of their own, and it unfortunately doesn’t get quite as much attention (I guess nobody wants to think about a guy’s junk when they’re peeling off the top of their yogurt.)

But Movember is an effort to change that. Started in 2003, Movember is an annual, month-long celebration of the mustache, highlighting men’s health issues – specifically prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and male depression. During the month of November, men grow a mustache and raise funds for charities like the Prostate Cancer Foundation and the Lance Armstrong Foundation (LIVESTRONG).

We’re going to be celebrating Movember here on the Art of Manliness website by inviting readers to grow a mo during the month of November. The man who raises the most money for charity will be rewarded with a handsome prize.

Here’s how the contest works:

1. Awesomely manly Aussie and Movember veteran Shaun Daws has started an Art of Manliness team on the Movember site. As team captain, he’ll be keeping an eye on the leader board and encouraging you along. To join the Art of Manliness team, you must register on the Movember site. You must register as a “team member” so we can keep track of your progress.

2. On November 1, you must start out clean shaven. You will then commence the growing of your beautiful, hairy mustache masterpiece. You cannot shave your mo until Nov. 30, and you must adhere to the following grooming rules:

  • There is to be no joining of the Mo at the sideburns – that’s a beard
  • There is to be no joining of the handlebars at the chin – that’s a goatee
  • A small complimentary growth under the chin is allowed (aka the Tickler)

3. During the month, hit up friends and family to donate to the cause.

4. Shaun has created a Movember Group in the Art of Manliness Community. Join the group and encourage your brothers! Shaun will be posting news, pictures, and updates, and you should do likewise. Let everyone see how your stache is progressing!

5. If you don’t have the cajones to grow a mustache (or if you don’t have cajones, period) you can still donate to the cause.

Men, this is your big chance to grow the mustache you’ve always dreamed of having but been too scared to attempt. The beauty of Movember is that during the early growing stage, the stage where the newly formed mustache’s appearance is so unsightly that men give up and shave, you have a ready and worthy excuse for why you look like a child molester. People will not only abstain from laughing at you, men will pat you on the back and women will french kiss you with joy. Then, at the end of the month, when the awesomeness of your stache is in full bloom, people will be in such awe of it that they will beg you not to shave it off. It’s win-win here folks.

Speaking of winning, finally having the manly mustache of your dreams is not the only prize. The Art of Manliness team members who raise the most money will be richly rewarded for the effort with these super duper prizes:

3rd Place: A sweet Movember t-shirt.

2nd Place: A sweet Movember t-shirt PLUS mustache cuff links.

1st Place: A Box of Manliness….A what? Behold!

box2This box was designed and created by AoM read Danielle Gidley for her boyfriend’s 30th birthday. We thought it was so cool that we’re going to make one for the winner of the Movember contest. The box will contain:

This box will not only put hair on your chest, it will add serious fur to your now trembling upper lip. Happy growing fellas!

{ 38 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Mr Woods October 27, 2009 at 2:04 am

I would love to help, only problem is I dont want to shave off my already awesome moustache! “you must start out clean shaven” =[

2 Ben Pratt October 27, 2009 at 3:23 am

I just started growing a mustache with Movember (merely the name, not the fundraising) in mind, mostly because it’ll probably take me more than 29 days to get a decent one. Oh well, this is fun and an awesome contest for a great cause.

3 Jim Kirk October 27, 2009 at 6:21 am

How about us manly dudes who already have a nice mustache? We won’t to help too, but we don’t want to cut off what we already have. I’ve had mine for 38 years!

4 gen Y Investor October 27, 2009 at 7:56 am

This is going to be interesting to follow! Glad you’re helping out a worthy cause! I’ve never tried growing a mustache, but I’m certainly contemplating it now.

5 Ryan October 27, 2009 at 8:03 am

I might seriously consider this, great idea.

6 Ryan October 27, 2009 at 8:09 am

Ok, I just checked the registration/donation site. Should we join the AoM team or fly solo? If we join the team, will you still be able to track who is “winning?”

7 Dan October 27, 2009 at 8:50 am

Cool idea, but the fact that it has to be limited to just the mustache is really lame. Besides, unless you can grow a big “soup-strainer” or handlebar mustache, you are just going to end up with a lame pornstache at the end of the month.

How about just No-Shave November instead?

8 Jay October 27, 2009 at 9:00 am

Dammit! Unfortunately Movember conflicts with Whiskerino which also begins on November 1st. I’d love to raise money for the cause AND be a part of the contest AND grow a killer MO AND compete in the whiskerino but I can’t do it all and abide by all of the rules. SO, I’m going to have a sit and a think. Any suggestions would be great.

9 Dan Smith October 27, 2009 at 9:23 am

Unfortunately, even at the age of 31, I have a pathetic mo, so I will be sitting this one out. We have a major fundraiser coming up early next year anyway, so I have to focus on that. I hope it works out though. I’ll keep looking in on it!

10 Isi October 27, 2009 at 9:50 am

@Dan Smith – I am with you there. I can let my mo grow for a month, hell two, and it never really comes in thick or full…not sure where that comes from, my dad and both gramps can grow a forest in a week that any veteran lumberman would stare at in awe! At 33 I would hope for some of those genes to kick in…but alas such is not the case.

I do think I am going to give the thing a go though. Clean shaven on the first it is. Off to join a team.

11 Aaron October 27, 2009 at 10:13 am

Like Dan, I would just end up with a freaky pornstache.

For the last couple of years I have done No-Shave November. I call it a success because several people who know me ask me why I haven’t shaved in a while (I usually keep a 3-5mm beard year-round). I tell them it’s No-Shave November for testicular cancer awareness. I usually end up with a slightly more tamed Zach Galifianakis beard by the end of the month.

I think this year I will get into the fundraising aspect of it.

12 Brucifer October 27, 2009 at 12:18 pm

Amidst all their pink ribbon hype and ballyhoo, not a one of my many women friends has even a small clue about how huge the incidence of prostate cancer is in men.

13 Will Mitchell October 27, 2009 at 1:31 pm

I’ve been growing a test-stach for the last week to assess how things may go in Movember, and it’s not exactly encouraging. Let me clarify, I’m 26 years old, and after a week my upper lip looks like that of a 14 year old who doesn’t know he needs to shave.

But dang it, I don’t care! I’ve already signed up, and I’m sticking too my guns. November 1st I will shave smooth, and then grow whatever mustache I am able. My pitiful mustache will attract attention, particularly from those who tell me I need to shave, and then I will be able to spread the word about prostate and testicular cancer. I may look goofy, but I’ll look goofy for a good cause!

And maybe, just maybe, the Lord will smile upon my efforts and make my pitiful boy-stache grow into a fully powered Magnum P. I.-stache. I’ve already picked out an Hawaiian shirt.

14 Jason October 27, 2009 at 1:34 pm

I like this, I have been shaving my moustache since I started wetshaving, it might be time to grow it out for one month.

15 Loris October 27, 2009 at 1:54 pm

Brucifer, oh yes we know. We notice when the beloved elders in our churches start dropping between the ages of 55 and 70. I’ve lost four family and church friends that way in the last three years. Educate your lady friends, please!

We just had a “Real Men Wear Pink” pageant at work for the Susan G. Komen foundation. Perhaps we could have a “Chicks in Camo or Cargopants” pageant for male cancers?

16 Matt Demers October 27, 2009 at 2:17 pm

If anyone in the Great White North is interested, I’ve made a team for If anyone wants to join me, join the team “Art of Manliness Canada”.

Thanks gentlemen.

17 Ant October 27, 2009 at 2:33 pm

I joined. Lets see how bad my ‘stache can become.

18 Sjefke October 27, 2009 at 3:01 pm

It should be called MoveMyMember….

19 Ed October 27, 2009 at 3:54 pm

I’m sporting a beard this winter so I can’t get involved, but I’m awfully jealous for that Box Of Manliness. I want one.

20 Handspike October 27, 2009 at 4:13 pm

Hi guys, looking to join Team AoM for Movember, but when I try to register from Movember Ireland site there are problems joining the team. Should I register solo or is there a way around it?
Manly thanks

21 Shaun October 27, 2009 at 4:18 pm

@Handspike – There’s no Irish team yet, but if you go to the Other Teams section of the Movember group (, and add the link to your team we can keep track of your progress.

22 Shaun October 27, 2009 at 4:46 pm

Hi All,

WIth regards to the Art Of Manliness team(s) for Movember, here’s how it breaks down:

If you use the link in Brett’s post (above) to join the Movember team, you will be joining the US AoM team. All proceeds from this group go to the US charities also mentioned above. Some members have expressed an interest in creating teams for their respective countries. So far there are US, Australian and Canadian teams that have sprung up. These groups will function in much the same way as the main group, except that the donations will go towards local charities instead of US ones.

Ultimately, I will be keeping track of the donations made to any pages registered on the Movember community group in order to determine who has collected the most and win the relevant prizes.

The long and short of it is if you want a simple way to help out, then join the main group using Brett’s link above. If you really really want to join a different group, then that’s fine, just make sure it’s registered on the Movember Group page in the community section of this site.

Sorry if there’s been any confusion caused by all of this!


23 Captain D October 27, 2009 at 10:07 pm

As an Army Officer, it’s generally considered a faux pas to grow a moustache (though I can’t say that I know exactly why that is, it’s just part of the culture these days). Couple that with the fact that Army Regulations state the following:

“Mustaches are permitted; if worn, males will keep mustaches neatly trimmed, tapered, and tidy. Mustaches will not present a chopped off or bushy appearance, and no portion of the mustache will cover the upper lip line or extend sideways beyond a vertical line drawn upward from the corners of the mouth. Handlebar mustaches, goatees, and beards are not authorized.”

All told, this leaves us Soldiers with moustaches that look generally goofy. Be that as it may, I fully intend to support Movember as best I can by growing the most awesome Army ‘stache I can muster! To make things better, in November I will conduct a reconnaissance of Iraq for my unit’s upcoming deployment there and I also have a birthday, meaning many chances for people to ask, “What’s with the silly crumb-duster?” It should be good times all around!

24 Adam October 27, 2009 at 11:30 pm

Adam here from the Republic of Movember. Movember is all about changing the face of men’s health by starting clean shaven and growing a moustache for 30 solid days. Emphasis on moustache.

Like doing a 10k run for charity, our commitment is to grow a moustache for 30 days. No beards, no goatees – its moutsache time. Why?

A moustache, is your international passport to conversations about prostate and testicular cancer. Beards and goatees just don’t garner the same attention. Its a big commitment but we are fighting a big issue, 1 in 6 of us will get prostate cancer and its about time we brought much needed attention to the cause.

Every moustache makes a difference

Just grow it!

25 Jimmy james October 27, 2009 at 11:52 pm

well I must say it’s made my day seeing a nice regal chat about men growing moustaches and being just that…a man. That’s right it’s time to get rid of the up turned peach coloured polo shirts, grow a Mo and stand tall like the well fed wolf who always gets fed. It’s his hungry, mangey couterpart that is alway looking for the next…It’s a special time upon us men, a time like no other when the return of the regal art of moustache growing can not only increase our stead in the community but also help save our lives through supporting men’s health and Movember.
We must remember though if you’re not registered to grow and raise money for the cause on the AoM team you are just another man supporting being creepy at work. Good on you guys!!

26 Kevin Pecoraro October 28, 2009 at 11:31 am

My buddies and I have an Octobeard competition every year. I only wish I could just hack off the beard part to unvail my sure to be glorious mostache. I’ll have to sleep on this. Beards really do grown on you.

27 Handspike October 28, 2009 at 11:43 am

Thanks Shaun. I’ll get right on it.

28 Gryphon MacThoy October 28, 2009 at 12:49 pm

So… no beards? Lame.

29 Sjefke October 28, 2009 at 3:20 pm
30 Gianpaolo Pietri October 28, 2009 at 8:55 pm

I’ve been wondering, where do you guys get your incredibly vast array of amazing vintage photographs?
You have one for every occasion, they are old and in great resolution.
This is a great cause, on my to become a team member now. Thanks for brining it to my attention.

31 Gerald Gudmundson October 30, 2009 at 10:29 am

I have just recently discovered The Art of Manliness blog via a find of the AoM podcast on iTunes. I have been fascinated by the content of the podcast and it has really encouraged some intraspection. Thanks for the guests and now the content of this website/blog.

One thing that has really piqued my interest in the podcast is the intro and exit music. What is that music, and where can I find similar food for the ears?

I enjoyed Zeke Smith’s point of view on manliness. I also liked the information about Primal Blueprint.

Although I am not fully sold on all the author says, it motivated me to consider and conduct some research on my own. For example, I really enjoy working in my home woodworking shop. I like making cabinets or furniture for our home, and creating jigs to make my woodworking efforts easier. But, I have felt bad about not doing the “manly” thing to sit and watch football or go to the gym for hours. The discussion of Primal Blueprint has made me reconsider my feelings and realize maybe I can be just as active and healthy by the sustained multiple muscle-group activities of woodworking, yardwork, construction, etc.

32 Samuel October 30, 2009 at 3:43 pm

I too am doing Movember. Although, after about a month of phone calls and emails to the moderators of Movember USA, I’ve finally secured a financial agreement with them that allocates any funds from my team (Moustacular) to the Prostate Cancer Foundation ONLY. The reason being; I do not find it manly to destroy embryos in order to potentially find a cure for another disease. LAF explicitly supports Embryonic Stem Cell research, which, although promising has shown no more results than alternate routes including stem cell research taken from living adult hosts. I would rather live my life to the fullest and pass on in hopes that the next generation can do better. How often we decry the loss of life to war and crime, only stand by idly while the future generations are wiped out… so that we might live a few more years.

If you don’t have a team or just want to join Movember. My team ‘Moustacular’ is looking for more members and supporters. If you too think that Embryonic Stem Cell research is wrong and want to raise money for prostate cancer while sending a message to the world, please join us at :

Peace and Moustaches for all,


33 Lisa October 30, 2009 at 6:55 pm

i think it’s cool to do something for men’s health, since everyone is constantly focused on doing things for women/kids.

too bad i can’t grow one! but I’ll support as a Movember Mo Sista….

34 Nik October 31, 2009 at 10:44 am

Prostate cancer is essentially a fact of life for men. I have heard that nearly all men who live into their 70s or 80s die with prostate cancer. It often isn’t at a stage to hurt them because it usually develops very slowly, but if you live long enough, you are almost guaranteed to get it. The tragedy is the smaller population of men in whom it develops quickly earlier in life.

35 Steve Dogiakos October 31, 2009 at 5:42 pm

Just joined the team! :)

36 Brigette Brugada November 1, 2009 at 11:50 pm

I am so proud of all the men who signed up to be on the AoM Movember team. Would love to see your progress and the mo’s you grow. Have fun!


37 James November 2, 2009 at 2:50 pm

I would love to join you othe stache growers, but I inherited my dads facial haor patterns. I will probably be ab le to grow a full beard when I’m 35… Guess I will just watch from the sidelines.

38 David LaSpina November 4, 2009 at 6:16 pm

I live in Japan, and y’know at this moment I can’t recall ever seeing a single mustache here on old or young. Facial hair is generally frowned upon and even a beard isn’t very common (tho I have seen some pretty amazing Japanese beards in my time here).

Nevertheless, my Japanese wife is rather taken by the idea of MOvember, so she’s encouraged me to grow one. Some things may come up that would require I shave, so I’ll only informally enter the event. But I’m with you guys!

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