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about 9 years ago by James Bell

The Work Look: Facial Hair Styles

Facial Hair

To shave or not to shave for a job interview? Or to shave this little bit under my chin and leave it bushy just under my nose? Nevermind Movember (when you just HAVE to rock some facial hair), how does sprouting a Tom Selleck reflect on the candidate when applying for a job? Wonder no longer, as this exceptionally thorough and accurate report* will answer all your questions.

We asked a cross section of Meridian’s recruitment consultants, covering IndustrialConstructionOffice & Professional and Health industries to opine what they thought were acceptable styles of facial hair when applying for an interview, asking them to rate whether they would find the following styles acceptable.  

Row 1 (L-R): Van Dyke, Muttonchops, Chinstrap, Classic 'Stache
Row 2 (L-R): Chin Strip, Goatee, Big Beard, Horseshoe
Row 3 (L-R): 5 o'clock shadow, Pencil, Handlebar, Cleanshaven

Here are the results

The general overview makes for interesting reading, as it seems the safe bet is to go cleanshaven, with 90% of our consultants finding the standard clean shave acceptible. Of course this isn’t news, we want to see what face fuzz we can wear. The most popular facial hair styles would be the Goatee and Classic Moustache then, with the slightly more out thereHandlebarPencil and Horseshoe styles not as popular. Let’s see if there’s a difference in opinion between the genders.

According to these results you’d be more likely to get away with a beard or ‘stache if you’re interviewing with a man with theClassic ‘Stache being more popular than being Clean Shaven, but if you know you’re in with a lady interviewer, play it safe and shave it all off. This next graph analyses how our different sectors view facial hair styling.

Looking at this radial graph, the Health sector dislikes seeing facial hair in interviews the most, whereas Construction andOffice & Professional recruitment consultants are more open-minded to the sight. Of course, this is all very subjective and I’ll leave you with some thoughts from our consultants regarding different facial hair styles. 

"All are acceptable, except the 5 o’clock shadow. However, they must be well groomed and the rest of their appearance – hair, clothes, scent etc, must be spot on for the interview."

"I don’t like any facial hair, my mum said to never trust people with a beard!"

"Classic ‘stache is ok so long as it isn’t too big."

"Never trust a clean shaven man. Delve into him as hard as possible. He is hiding something. It might be that he stole a footy from Primary School. It might be that he has a dungeon filled with pensioners all wearing his mother’s shoes, which have been going missing since 1987. Whatever it is, find out. Otherwise he can’t have a job."

"(regarding Big Beards) If the man is smart elsewhere, then just employ. This man is the geeza and people love him no matter where he is."

"5 O’clock shadow may be a no, especially if they haven’t bothered having a shave that day. If it’s an evening interview and they have come straight from work, then it isn’t an issue."

"Anyone who has the cahoonas to wear either a Horseshoe or Handlebar moustache gets bonus points."

*Disclaimer: In no way is this a thorough or accurate report 

Thanks for reading! If you're looking for a job, search with Meridian.