Updated: Jun 22
Symbolism, Attractiveness, and Gender Perceptions
Beards have long been recognized as a unique feature exclusive to one gender. In fact, renowned scholar Darwin even concluded that the majority of women find bearded men more appealing than their clean-shaven counterparts. Surprisingly, the level of facial hair seems to impact a man’s attractiveness. Let’s delve into this intriguing subject and explore the captivating allure of beards.
In the midst of 2010, while deeply immersed in the music scene, I stumbled upon the captivating sounds of Suicide Silence—a heavy metal band hailing from Riverside, California, that emerged in 2002. One particular musician caught my attention: guitarist Mark Heylmun. His unparalleled skill and unapologetic attitude resonated deeply with me.
Wikipedia classifies Suicide Silence as an American deathcore band, but Mark Heylmun himself vehemently disputes this label. He proudly declares Suicide Silence as a heavy fucking band, regardless of whether it fits into the confines of metal or any specific genre. According to Mark, they sought to create powerful, heavy music and transcend the limitations imposed by categorization.
“a lot of bands will say they heard us and they started a deathcore band. Well we didn’t start a deathcore band we started a heavy metal band. We wanted to be a fucking heavy band. We claim this as like a black crown, we are wearing this crown of something we do not exactly want to represent. We are not a deathcore band, whatever deathcore is, whatever the fuck it is, we are not that. We are a heavy fucking band whether it is metal, heavy metal or whether it is death metal whatever it is.”—Mark said. (Source: http://puregrainaudio.com/interviews/interview-with-suicide-silence-guitarist-mark-heylmun).
It is widely acknowledged that beards embody the quintessential symbol of manliness. To other men, a beard signifies ruggedness, toughness, and intellectual depth—a telltale sign of a fantastic companion for sharing a beer. To women, a beard exudes a sense of gentlemanliness and suggests prowess in matters of sexuality. Beards, it seems, hold a remarkable power of perception.
“However, Mark Heylmun was an incredible musical force in that band, and without a doubt has one of the finest beards in alternative music. The bushiness, the length, the understated and yet incredible way it flows alongside his frankly ridiculous blonde hair is truly a sight to behold.” (Source : http://ramzine.co.uk/debate/top-ten-beards-in-rock-metal/).
“As we all know, beards are the consummate symbol of manliness. To other men, a beard states you are rugged and tough, but also a deep thinker, and also a fantastic guy to share a beer with; to women it says that you are a gentleman and extremely sexually proficient.”(Source : http://ramzine.co.uk/debate/top-ten-beards-in-rock-metal/).
Through various documentary videos freely available on YouTube, I embarked on a captivating journey of discovery. It was during this exploration that I developed a genuine appreciation for Suicide Silence and their artistic endeavors. The reasons behind my affinity need not be explicitly stated; sometimes, an indescribable connection arises, transcending the need for explanations.
However, the fascination with beards, the connection to Darwin’s observations, the admiration for Suicide Silence’s music and defiance of genre labeling, and the allure of masculinity embodied in facial hair have all been key components of this introspective exploration. As the exhaustion sets in and hunger takes hold, I reflect on the captivating journey of self-discovery this article has taken me on.
Illustration by Novian. 2010 | re-design March 2015.