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Men with beards are 'dirtier than dogs'

Yahoo! Style UK logo Yahoo! Style UK 4 days ago Francesca Specter
a brown and white dog lying on a bed: Men's beards were found to have more bacteria than dogs' necks. [Photo: Getty] Men's beards were found to have more bacteria than dogs' necks. [Photo: Getty]

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Beards are a growing trend among British men, with 42% now sporting some form of facial hair.

Despite face fuzz proving more attractive to the opposite sex than clean-shaven looks, it would seem the popular look falls short in the hygiene stakes.

Diversity of men. Four cheerful young guys are standing and embracing, smiling, on pure background in casual outfit and jeans Diversity of men. Four cheerful young guys are standing and embracing, smiling, on pure background in casual outfit and jeans A new study has found beards carry a ‘significantly higher’ amount of bacteria compared to a dog’s fur.

As part of the research, conducted by the Hirslanden Clinic in Switzerland and uncovered by the Mail on Sunday, scientists took swabs from the beards of 18 male subjects and the necks of 30 dogs of different breeds.

Portrait of bearded male in black shirt with tattoo on his neck. Portrait of bearded male in black shirt with tattoo on his neck. When the results were compared, all of the beards were found to have a high microbial count – compared to only 23 out of 30 of the dog swabs.

What’s more, seven subjects’ beards harboured bacteria that was harmful to human health.

“The researchers found a significantly higher bacterial load in specimens taken from the men's beards compared with the dogs' fur,” said study author Professor Andreas Gutzeit.

Studio photograph of Large bearded man on pink background, wearing a white t-shirt. © Ian Ross Pettigrew Studio photograph of Large bearded man on pink background, wearing a white t-shirt. “On the basis of these findings, dogs can be considered as clean compared with bearded men,” added Gutzeit. 

It’s yet to be seen how many beard lovers – male and female alike – change their minds after reading the results of this study. However, last week Kit Harington fans called it an “utter travesty” after he shaved off his trademark fuzz.

BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - APRIL 12: Kit Harrington arrives at the Game of Thrones Season Finale Premiere at the Waterfront Hall on April 12, 2019 in Belfast, UK (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for HBO) © 2019 Jeff Kravitz BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - APRIL 12: Kit Harrington arrives at the Game of Thrones Season Finale Premiere at the Waterfront Hall on April 12, 2019 in Belfast, UK (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for HBO) The ‘Game of Thrones’ actor, who plays Jon Snow in the hit series, left fans across the globe devastated after shaving his now-famous beard off.

One described Harington’s new look ad “offensive”. Another social media user wrote, “Kit Harington’s attractiveness really is reliant on that beard, huh?”

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