Did you know that the idea that grew into the Bristlr you know and love happened exactly a year ago today? Now you do!
Just a few weeks after the idea was born, Bristlr officially launched. Since then with the help of you beard lovers out there we’ve grown in to much more than just an idea.
Just for fun, here’s a list of the names that were thrown in to the hat before Bristlr became Bristlr:
Aren’t you glad we went with “Bristlr”?
In less than a year we’ve had countless successstories, in total making half a million matches, our big #BareYourBeard competition which made some beard owners very happy (and popular!), we’ve had international press coverage and recognition, been through Europe’s best pre-seed start-up accelerator, and we even had a party to celebrate 100,000 Bristlr users. We’ve come a long way, and are continuing to grow from strength to strength.
So, with our birthday coming up this month we’ve certainly got a lot to celebrate! That’s right, if we’ve learned one thing this past year, it’s knowing when to party.
But what kind of party would it be without guests? If it weren’t for our beard fans, we wouldn’t be here today. So we want to invite you to our year-and-a-day party to say thanks. Free up your Saturday 24th this month and come on down to Manchester’s SpaceportX, we’re throwing a party!
We’ve come a long way, but finally we can announce the winner of our #BareYourBeard competition on what will be someone’s most magical #WorldBeardDay yet!
But before that, let’s take a quick look back to all the entrants that showed off their bristles. With a few honourable mentions to our dedicated overseas fans that unfortunately couldn’t take part and many entries from beardy guys up and down the country, we were truly overwhelmed with the responses!
And now, one month since #BareYourBeard began, we can finally make someone’s day!
Now before we jump right in we have one big thank you to add – We couldn’t have done our photo shoots if not for our friend Photograph Art Studio 25! With her amazing photographic skills, our buddy Sophie captured all of our finalists, and their beards, in their best light. Couldn’t resist a quick selfie opportunity to commemorate the day. We look forward to working with you again!
Let’s take a look at our finalists:
Joseph brought fierce moustache game, with curls to make any facial hair fanatic jealous. He told us he loved Brisltr because it united him with his current boyfriend. A sweet story, a handsome face and a truly enviable set of face furniture.
Chris was a last minute entrant that really caught our eye, not just with the beard but those sassy eyebrows. With a punk look, and a finely shaped beard you might not expect to find a heart of gold. However, Chris was approachable, fun and really got in to the photo shoot. His line “#BareYourBeard before your beard bares you,” still keeps us entertained.
Dougie was one of our few Instagram entrants based in the UK! The length of beautiful beard came all the way from Norwich. With him he brought a friendly demeanor, and shared a touching story of how much the chance at being a beard model meant to him. To top it all off, he’s even provided us with a beard oil recipe!
It’s a tough choice we’ve got to make. All of our finalists took the time to show us their stuff, and they all worked the camera, serving fierce beard game in their photo shoots. But there can be only one winner! We’ve kept an eye on Twitter, and we’ve seen you all make some noise for your favourites.
Our choice isn’t made on beard game alone – we evaluated our finalists before, during and after their photo shoots. Nothing too scary, but of course we’re not going to choose our winner based on looks alone! We’re not a superficial bunch.
So. Drum roll please. Without further ado, our winner is…
With a story of a supporting mother that really wanted him to go on to become a beard model, our competition helped Dougie on that journey as his first modelling gig! Not only that, Dougie came loaded with tips and tricks. We were most impressed with his beard oil recipe, not to mention his own method of temporary beard colouring! This won’t be the last you hear of Dougie either – we’ve talked about getting him back to do guest entries for our blog, so who knows what his next beard tip will be?
Our lucky winner will be receiving – a beard pampering set from Beard Lab, a beard pampering session from a nearby barbers, a selection of prints from the #BareYourBeard photo shoot and a whole lot of publicity from us! We wish you all the success in your modelling pursuits, Dougie!
Now we can’t forget about our runners up, Joe and Chris – your time with us was not wasted! In addition to your own publicity from us, you’ll also receive a digital selection of the prints from your #BareYourBeard photo shoot, and some scented beard oil from Beard Lab! We hope you’ll both keep in touch!
Until then, thank you so much to ALL of our entrants for getting involved, our fans keeping the hype up and our finalists for taking the time out of your schedules to get involved with our photo shoots. We hope you’ve enjoyed the experience as much as we have! And of course, we couldn’t have done it without Sophie from Photograph Art Studio 25!
Thank you! Keep an eye out, our next competition could be just around the corner!
Fresh from his #BareYourBeard photo shoot, Dougie here has passed on a few tips for us, and to all of you! Here’s a quick and easy guide on how to make your own beard oil. Before you ask, it won’t turn your beard blue and purple… That’s just a cool picture.
Before we get in to the beard oil, credit where it’s due! This handy tip comes from Dougie, you can find him and his lovely beard on Instagram @dougie_archer and Twitter @Dougie_LRKs.
Okay, before you get started you’ll need:
Pure Coconut Oil, we’d recommend this, but feel free to experiment!
A bottle or two of scented essential oils.
A big-ish bowl and a little bowl (that can stand boiling water!). Make sure the little bowl floats.
A selection of small pots/jars.
With all that in place, you’re ready to start making your own beard oil!
Step 1 – Fill the big bowl with boiling water.
Step 2 – Put some of the solid coconut oil into the smaller bowl and place that bowl inside the boiling water bowl. Watch as the coconut oil melts! Magic.
Step 3 – Put a few drops of your scented essential oil in to melted coconut oil. Want a potent smell? Put more in!
Step 4 – Carefully remove the bowl of oil from the big boiling water bowl and pour the oil in to one of your small pots/jars then wait for it to set.
BOOM! You’ve got yourself some beard oil made with your own two hands with a scent you love! What’s to stop you from making more? NOTHING! Use up the rest of that coconut oil making beard oils with other scents, or maybe mix scents. When you’ve got some coconut oil, a big bowl, a little bowl, a selection of scented essential oils and a few pots/jars to put your beard oils in the possibilities are endless!!
When you want to use it, just scoop some out and rub it in your hands and then spread evenly through your beard. What’s that smell? Success. Beardy Success. And whatever oil you put in there. And we bet it smells amazing.
Go. Share your beard smells and tales of home made oils with the world.
We want to say a huge thank you to everyone that came along for the night, we hope you had a great time! We really want to thank Manchester Drinkabout, The Escalator, and give a special shout out (they didn’t sponsor the event, they’re just ace) to ShinDigger for their super tasty beer – you were there in spirit… But not that kind of spirit.
And finally we want to say thank you to all of our fans! We know there’s a lot of you, and we know that even though you might not have been able to make it to Manchester to party with us, that we have your continued support.
Some of you have even been travelling across the country to join in our #BareYourBeard competition, and even more of you applied to be part of it from every corner of the world! It’s great to see our fanbase growing globally, and it’s even better to see you all getting involved.
So, from the team at Bristlr – Thank you beard fans!
Call us soppy, but we love reading your touching stories, and we just can’t get enough of them. So please, let us know if you’ve found love on Bristlr.
And remember, the only requirement for you to be on Bristlr? Be a fan of beards! Regardless of your gender identity, sexuality, age (as long as you’re over 18), whether you have a beard, love a beard, or both, you’re welcome on Bristlr!
Are you at a loss for plans this Friday? Got plans but you’d rather be doing something more fun and beardy? Of course!
Well, join us and Drinkabout Manchester for a joint celebration in Manchester this Friday! There’ll be beards, there’ll be drinks and there’ll most surely be fun times to be had!
What are we celebrating, you ask? In case you hadn’t heard, we recently hit 100,000 users on Bristlr, and that figure is still climbing! It’s a massive achievement, and we’ve decided to give ourselves a pat on the back with a well deserved celebration. But we couldn’t possibly celebrate without our dedicated fans that have helped us hit that target, so we’re inviting you all to come along and join us!
Our #BareYourBeard competition has been a great success so far, but it’s not over yet! We’re now moving on to stage two of our competition – the photo shoot! Several of our lucky UK entrants are now being selected based on their photos and reasoning for loving Bristlr to come along to our photo shoot for the chance to win our grand prize!
Get ready, we’ve got a lot of beards and a lot of bristles heading your way!
Unfortunately we’ve had a lot of overseas entrants for our competition – as much as we’d love to fly them all over here, for the time being it’s not possible! So, to immortalise all of our overseas entrants, we’ll start with our Honourable Mentions in no particular order:
-Check out Jordan’s beard from Columbus, Ohio (Instagram @JordanV100 & Twitter @JordanVidra):
-Another US entrant from Atlanta, Georgia is John (Instagram @IamJohnEdward), find him on Instagram:
-In Valencia, California we have Steve’s thick beard (Twitter @stevenjmchenry):
-All the way from Baton Rouge, Louisiana is Justin (Instagram @JustLamb) and his mighty beard:
-In Houston, Texas we’ve got Kevin (Instagram @kstump07) with this bristly number:
-Way over in Chicago, Illinois is our beardy pal Jason Zierk (Instagram @sugaree_76):
-Here we have an great entry from Thomas (Instagram & Twitter @tkies08) in Nashville, Tennessee. Thomas also had this to say – “Bristlr brings those who love beards together, and that is a great great thing #bareyourbeard.” You go Thomas!
-From São Paulo, Brazil we have Leandro’s beautiful beard (Instagram @leandro_ribeiro_83)
-And a little closer to home in Waterford, Ireland is Kevin (Instagram @revelate), who unfortunately couldn’t make it over to us but still rocks a great beard.
Thanks to all of our fans around the world that got in touch with such enthusiasm! Here’s hoping someday we can get you involved more directly!
On to our UK entrants in with a chance of making it to the photo shoot.
-Strong beard game from Chris (Instagram & Twitter @RorchachBeard):
-Dapper entry from Dougie (Instagram @Dougie_Archer):
-Our bearded pal Trev (Twitter @dirkdiddler):
-Moustache on point from Joseph (Twitter and Instagram @Joey_Seph):
-Our good buddy, mountain man Gabriel (Instagram @The_English_Beard):
-Lengthy and lovely beard by Frank (Twitter @flangbridge):
-Another lovely length of beard by Paul (Twitter @Redcelt77):
-Nice thick beard from Johnny (Twitter @FenderBee):
-Salt and pepper entry from Stu (Twitter @stevens_stu):
-That’s one fine beard (Twitter @OBD_Beard_oil), he’s in the middle guys:
-Sweet little face and a wild beard from Liam (Instagram @amacabrefellow):
-And no name, but you can find this beard on Twitter (@cock_turnip):
All of our entrants have been contacted and those that can join us for the photo shoot are in with a chance of winning our fabulous prize! So, exciting times ahead for you guys! Remember to work the camera, serve fierce beard and you could be the winner of our grand prize!
Gather round beard wearers, it’s competition time. We’re hosting a photo shoot for Bristlr users, and the finest looking beard we find will win an all expenses paid beard pampering session.
This is your chance to work the camera, show us those bristles and get some publicity! We want you to Bare Your Beard! No, we don’t want you to shave your beard off, we want you to show your beard off.
To get involved send us a photo of your beardy self along with a few quick words telling us why you love Bristlr and why you want to get involved. You can message us via Facebook, Instagram or Tweet us @BristlrApp.
No beard? No problem! We’re also looking for beard fans to join in at the shoot, regardless of gender. You won’t get to win the beard pampering, but you will get to fondle some fine follicles.
Let’s talk prizes!
The winner of the photo shoot will be given an all expenses paid trip to get that beard trimmed and pampered, along with a home beard care pack containing beard oil, balm and a comb to keep those bristles tame. That’s not all – you’ll also have the chance to pick some of your favourite images from the photo shoot to be printed for you to keep (or given away to your fans).
Runners up, we still love you! As well as joining us in a really fun day, we’ll supply you with a digital selection from your photos.
Sorry overseas fans! Bristlr is based in Manchester, UK so we might struggle to fly you over here for a beard pampering! Unfortunately, we can only accept UK based entrants. For those of you not quite local to Manchester if you’re struggling to get here let us know and we’ll see what can be done.
This weekend a beard fan messaged the Bristlr Facebook page to thank us for uniting her with the beardy love of her life. And what a wonderful story it was to read, made me feel all warm and bristly inside. So, here I am to share this wonderful success story with you, to brighten up your week ahead.
Meet Sophie and Kyle. Notice Kyle’s EPIC beard, and those happy little faces. That’s exactly what we’re about here at Bristlr – making people happy.
Sophie tells me how her Bristlr journey began, “I was having a drunken night with my girlfriends when the subject of my love of hot bearded men came up. Within just a few minutes they had set up my Bristlr account and were browsing through the hairy hotties!”
Now if that doesn’t sound like a fun night in, I don’t know what does! And it just goes to show, you could be on Bristlr and browsing beards within minutes! Meeting the love of your life couldn’t be simpler and more enjoyable.
Feeling a little shy, Sophie boldly asked her pals to pick out the sexiest man they could find. Enter Kyle, or ‘Beyondtheflames’ as he was known back then.
“He replied straight away and the connection was obvious from the get go,” Sophie reminisces with a dreamy look in her eyes (I assume), “we met the next day and spent the most amazing day together!”
Sophie tells me from that point on they have been inseparable, spending every available minute together worshiping that epic beard. Their favourite activity? Cuddling up together and enjoying beardy snuggles. Aww!
They’re even living together now and will be moving down to Newcastle together soon.
“He is my best friend and my soul mate.”
Now if that doesn’t melt your heart, nothing will. We’re ever so happy you found each other, Sophie and Kyle!
Do you have your own Bristlr success story? We’d love to hear about it, so get in touch!
We noticed you enjoyed our Merbeards last week, so here’s a guide on how to temporarily achieve one!
What’s a Merbeard I hear you ask? A Merbeard is the art of dyeing one’s beard a funky colour, but shades of green or blue work best. Red could also work, if you’re going for that Disney look.
Like many beard owners I was intrigued by the Merbeard but not sure I was willing to bleach and dye my beard. Bleach doesn’t wash out and it can have some nasty effects on hair, from split ends to the dreaded snap-off. After losing an entire fringe to bleach back in 2013 (since recovered), I’ve been a bit wary of the stuff ever since.
It seemed like the Merbeard was beyond my grasp. That was until I met my current boyfriend, who’s very keen to go all the way with his Merbeard obsession. We found a temporary method to test out the Merbeard – Hair chalk!
Okay, so your first step is to not wear anything you like. Get out the mess clothes. You might also want to don some latex gloves. Now get that beard wet (and your hair too if you want to go all out)! Because beard hair can be a bit coarser compared to the hair on top of your head, it’s pretty much impossible to get this stuff on to a dry beard. If you’ve just beard oiled up and don’t want to waste, maybe try this out later.
It’s so easy to get this stuff on your skin, yet so difficult to get off; accuracy is key. What you want to do is pull sections of your beard taut and then using your other hand run the chalk along this section (on the underside too for the best effect). You might need to do this a few times before the colour starts to show. Don’t panic if it looks dark (unless you’re beard is a bright colour, in which case it’s probably already showing), in natural light once your beard is dry it will be pretty vibrant.
Okay, so you’ve got a colourful streak in your beard now! You can stop there if you like, maybe that’s all you want. If you want to go all the way, start segmenting your beard and repeating that step of running the chalk along segments of beard held taut.
Once your whole beard is covered you might need to fill out the edges. Gently, without holding your beard, fill in the edges on your cheeks in a downward motion. This is probably when you’ll start getting the stuff on your skin. Do that same downward motion with a wipe and hope for the best, there really is no exact science to that, but hopefully only the skin underneath your beard will be covered.
The moustache can be tricky, depending on how much you have. For a thick one, it’s pretty much the same as your beard; pull taut, run chalk, colour. For a thinner moustache you might want to try very gently adding a bit of chalk to the centre then rubbing it along with your finger or one of those little eyebrow pencil brushes (they’re cheap in bodycare too!).
Almost done! Time for some clean up; you’ll probably need a fresh wipe for your face. Remember, downward motions towards the beard! Maybe your sink of shower needs a clean too… Don’t worry, it comes off easily!
So the tricky part is setting the colour. Heat can be helpful, and if you’ve got a tiny straightening iron that you can use on your beard then you’re set! Otherwise, crack out the hair dryer! After it’s all dry try some beard balm or wax to help set that stuff in place, wash your hands (it’s still going to come off a bit) and you’re set! Go stand in some natural light, get on Instagram and pick a good filter!
Top tip: If you want to avoid staining your neck, leave a layer underneath your beard uncoloured. Remember, this stuff is temporary and only to test out the Merbeard so it doesn’t have to look perfect, but chances are you won’t see the uncoloured under layer.