May 7 2013 7:13am

Heavy Stubble and Beards! Who’s Your Favorite Bearded Hero?

An article in ScienceDirect confirms what some of you have been saying all along—that women find men with heavy stubble most attractive, but judge bearded men as most likely to make good parents. Here's the salient quote:

Women judged faces with heavy stubble as most attractive and heavy beards, light stubble and clean-shaven faces as similarly less attractive...Masculinity ratings increased linearly as facial hair increased. [B]eardedness affects judgments of male socio-sexual attributes and suggest that an intermediate level of beardedness is most attractive while full-bearded men may be perceived as better fathers who could protect and invest in offspring.

There are many examples of heavy-stubbled heroes, but not as many of bearded heroes—do you have any favorite bearded heroes? Do you agree with this study?

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1. wsl0612
I cannot conceive of why a bearded man would be considered a better father, that's so odd. I am very picky about beards, I really loathe the ZZ-Top scraggly look, but a Van Dyke can be very smexy ;-)
Penny Watson
2. PennyRomance
I have a "bearded hero" shelf at Goodreads. Here are just a few super excellent beardy heroes: Sergei from BEARING ALL, Viktor from THE BLACKSMITH'S LOVER, Tate from SWEET DREAMS, Dominic from UNTAMED, Nash from WINTER WOMAN, Lev from WATER BOUND, Jacob from JACOB'S RETURN, and my 2 favorites, Ian from A VIRGIN RIVER CHRISTMAS and Emerson from The Amelia Peabody Series.
Ella Drake
3. Ella Drake
As my husband is bearded and I think the best dad ever (I'm allowed the bias, right?) then yeah, I can see why women would find it to be that way.

Hmmm. favorite bearded hero. Hard to pick. But I think right now at this moment, I'm going with Thor!
Jennifer Proffitt
5. JenniferProffitt
Megan. He is tattooed AND bearded...I may die and go to heaven. I read some place that women find bearded and masculine looking men more attractive while they were ovulating (aka looking for love/the perfect mate) and more feminine or softer features when they weren't.
Ella Drake
9. Marilyn A
Without a doubt...Jax on SOA. (Charlie Hunnam)
Jennifer Proffitt
10. JenniferProffitt
I'm not afraid of you, Frampton!

Care for a cuddle?:

Or would you rather lounge and smoke?
Penny Watson
12. PennyRomance
Anyone interested in looking at hot beardy dudes, please enjoy my "Beard of the Day" posts...

Ironically, there are now 69 of them. O.O
Jennifer Proffitt
13. JenniferProffitt
Okay, you win the athlete round since all the other athletes I could find didn't shave because of superstition BUT I give you Ryan Reynolds (surprisingly Becks did not look cute with a full beard...).
Heather Waters
14. HeatherWaters
I used to haaaaaate beards, but they've grown on me over the last year or so. Even though it was fake, I thought Jeremy Renner's beard looked HOT in Bourne Legacy.

Jennifer Proffitt
15. JenniferProffitt
Was the pun intended, @redline_? "grown" on you, have they? As much as I love Ryan Gosling (Redline's love of Renner=Jenn's Love of Gosling) I hated him with a beard in The Notebook and Half-Nelson. Stubble, SURE! Scruff? Hell, yeah! Full-on beard? No way!
Heather Waters
17. HeatherWaters
@JenniferProffitt -- No, it wasn't! *headdesk* That's too funny.

Oh, man, I love scruff. Jamie Bamber does it particularly well, imo.
Jennifer Proffitt
18. JenniferProffitt
@GlassSlipper, I've just found him recently, he's gorgeous! That Vikings gif is too funny though with him leaning away. Love!
Megan Frampton
19. MFrampton
@Marilyn A: I agree with you:

And can you imagine how many comments we'll get when we do the 'who's got the best heavy scruff' post? DAVID GANDY ftw, for me, whereas Heather will counter w/Bamber, and Jenn will offer up some Gosling. Gonna be epic.
Jackie Lester
21. JackieLester
I was never much of a beard fan but I think Opie on SOA converted me. He wore it well (and looks totally different without it.)

@MFrampton - Is that the same pic from the Dyson post? It isn't showing on either (which makes me more curious, of course.)

And a bearded man reading a book? Win!

Ella Drake
22. e_bookpushers
Very interesting post and LOVE the comments :D
Megan Frampton
23. MFrampton
...And one more:

@JackieLester: I didn't post that Dyson pic here, just over there. Thought it suited that post more (he doesn't have much of a beard).
Pamela Webb-Elliott
24. Spaz

Jaime Lannister with beard this season on GoT is TOTALLY doing it for me.
Carmen Pinzon
26. bungluna
I was going to protest that I do not like bearded men, then I remembered Dyson and saw some of the pics her. I stand corrected.
Rachel Fry
27. raychmop
@GlassSlipper A-to-the-MEN! That is one beautiful bearded man!
Ella Drake
29. BrooklynShoeBabe
Ella Drake
30. Lionrock71
Jackie Lester you are so right! Opie on SOA made me a believer, then I watched Hell on Wheels and Anson Mount sealed the deal. And Clint Eastwood -- though extremely squinty and skinny -- always seemed extra hot to me when I was younger.
Lana Baker
32. lanalucy
redline? Is there any particular way that Bamber does NOT look good? I mean, other than when he dresses himself? He does rock the scruff very nicely.
Ella Drake
33. A.J. Larrieu
I don't dare contribute a pic to this conversation in the face of so much awesome (especially Idris Elba; oh my word).

@PennyRomance: Emerson from the Amelia Peabody series might be my favorite hero ever, bearded or otherwise.
Megan Frampton
34. MFrampton
I have to write a Morning Coffee, and I am DRENCHED from the rain, but I did have to share this:
Megan Frampton
35. MFrampton
(@JenniferProffitt hasn't rebutted yet; does this mean I WIN?)
Jennifer Proffitt
36. JenniferProffitt
Them there's fightin' words, Megan! Okay, you've asked for it:
I give you Ginger Beard:

Hot Ricki Hall complete with the Adonis Belt!:

Gerard Butler in 300:

And apparently I can't add any more pictures but I will be back! This isn't over, Frampton!
Jennifer Proffitt
37. JenniferProffitt
Red Carpet Beards:

I haven't found a good pic of a Bearded Guy reading, as per request, but I found one in front of a book case so that means he's thinking about it after he takes off his blazer, right?:
Megan Frampton
39. MFrampton

Okay, Proffitt, you mighta nearly won with Gerard in 300, because UNF, but I love Broody Bean in a Beard.
And now I like Baseball Beard!
Jennifer Proffitt
40. JenniferProffitt
I see your Bean and raise you a Viggo:

And then I'm gonna bring it all back around with Charlie Hunnam:

Ella Drake
41. Philipp

You can't see his tattoos, but one of 'em says "Mutter" and the other is a picture of Engels with Wings and a merman's tail.
Megan Frampton
42. MFrampton
@Philipp, you card! (yes, folks, I know him IRL). Note to you: That is not a sexy beard. Just if you're planning on imitating it.

Here's more of what I found--thank GOD for the internet:

Penny Watson
43. PennyRomance
@AJ Larrieu--I agree about Emerson. That series is so fantastic. Also, Ramses is an amazing and sexy hero, and often had a beard as a disguise, as I recall.
Jennifer Proffitt
44. JenniferProffitt
@MeganFrampton, I know I slowed things down here but I'm hoping this next beard will register a direct hit:

Look at that little smirk:

Jennifer Proffitt
46. JenniferProffitt
YES. Sweet, sweet victory! It tastes so good. Although I might have a sad moment later when I realize that Megan likely gave up because she will have a life this weekend and can't continue our game. I'll watch the Hobbit and RA's beard will give me comfort.
Megan Frampton
47. MFrampton
@JenniferProffitt: Dude, no way! ARMITAGE TRUMPS ALL. Plus this weekend I'm hanging with my mother-in-law for Mother's Day. LIKE I WOULDN'T RATHER BE BEARD-CHASING.
Jennifer Proffitt
48. JenniferProffitt
@MFrampton: Well then I'm glad my photos served as the direct hit I intended. We can still be beard chasing every so often, you know, to keep our internet searching skill sharp... Dear God I love the Internet.
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