Summer is about the beach, the great outdoors, lemonade, cookouts with friends and family, sun, and good old fashion fun. Sadly, almost every one of these highlights, unless careful planning and preparation is taken, can equal slow and painful moustache death.
We have already lived through the pains of all the above and have comeback a little wiser, stronger, and knowledgeable, with a willingness to share. Below, you’ll find some tips and pointers on how to properly own, operate, and maintain that furry little friend presently wilting above your upper lip in the summer sun. Rejoice and read on!
The sun is ruthless when it comes to rocking a perfect handlebar on the dunes, and the saltwater is his evil sidekick. We recommend using a stiff moustache wax when you know you are on route to the shore. If medium strength is the best you can do you will be fine if you bring an umbrella, otherwise the direct sunlight will set the droop on. A solid wax will resist the waves and water the best. Cold water is sometimes the best fix for soft wax and will aid in setting it.
When choosing a sunblock, reach for a waterproof one. I am not sure of the exact science behind this but through my own experience, it seems to be wax friendly. The oils in most sun blocks and lotions have an adverse reaction on most waxes and begin to quickly dissolve them. This is also true with a lot of lip balms.
Lip balms also contain evil moustache wax eating oils (unless they are stache friendly). Read the ingredient list and make certain they do not contain Almond or Sesame Oil especially. If you need to use lip balm, try using your moustache wax. Most organic, petrochemical free moustache waxes contain the very same things as a good balm, just in a more solid form. Scrape some out of the tin and rub the wax between your fingers, as you would do before applying it to your stache, and then rub it into your lips.
Tip: If you do carry wax on you in the Summer, be sure to keep it in a zip lock bag just in case it decides to melt. The oils and waxes can be almost impossible to get out of clothing and car upholstery.
Cookouts or BBQ Survival
The same rules apply as for the beach…with an added danger, FOOD! Possibly some of your favorite food, however you will be in the company of others so a change in etiquette must be made. (Note: unless in Rome. If this is the case, do as the Romans do.)
When tempted by that little tube of nitrates remain steadfast and resist. If you must give in, what you must keep in mind when adding condiments is they must go under the dog and not on top. Of course, this is if you are treating it as finger food. If you want to go all out with the relish et al or someone dressed it for you, use a fork and knife.
Plastic ware is not real, it’s meant for children and convicts on suicide watch. No adult can really use them or have ever figured out how. That is why I bring a set of stainless steel camping utensils with me. It sounds excessive but trust me, they have saved my stache on many an occasion. I have even started carrying chopsticks in their own little onyx case with me. The looks I get when I whip out the kit make the whole trouble worth it. Plus, instantly conversation blossoms.
As with the hot dog, put the condiments under the burger and proceed to eat with a fork and knife. Cut the pieces small and eat slowly and consciously with a napkin or handkerchief at the ready. Instead of approaching your mouth straight on with the fork, come at it from below so as not to butter your bristles.
Tip: Not only is a camping cutlery kit essential but also a cotton handkerchief. You can find them very reasonably priced online. Pick up a multi pack and carry one a day in a zip lock. The zip lock will protect your clothing after and prior if you choose to keep the cloth damp, which I recommend when eating. When no one is looking, dip the cloth in a cup of your least favorite aunt’s water glass and ring out the excess under the picnic table, only the dog will know. This trick also works well in a restaurant, especially one that provides thick cloth napkins that are the farthest thing from absorbent. BYON (bring your own napkin]
This seems to be all the rave right now, and why not? Pizza, traditionally considered finger food by the fur-less must be forever seen by the moustachioed as fork and knife food. I am sorry. If you are feeling brave and it is a thin slice you may be able to get away with folding it, turning it slightly and approaching from below. Again, keep handkerchief in hand and use between each bite.
Tip: When using said hanky, work it like you would your moustache comb but on your lips. Start in the middle and work in a parting motion as not to disturb your perfectly manicured stache.
Beverage Survival or Drinking Problem
If you are somewhere, ill prepared, and served something wet in a wide mouth glass, treat it like you would red wine. Rest the glass on your lower lip, open wide and tilt it. This will feel quite awkward at first but very quickly you will adjust.
You can also plan ahead and bring a Moustache stein to the party. I have two myself and leave one in the car. I bring it into the pub when I remember, but I always bring it to a swing’n outdoor shindig. The cup has a small moustache guard over the bottom mouth of the glass. There is a smaller outlet about the size of the opening on a beer can that holds back the suds while you drink like your plugging a dam with your tongue. Fun for all, and can also be found online for a decent price.
Drink beer from a bottle or can and never let anyone pour it for you. Using a straw is also an option but there are something’s I will never be seen in public doing.
Tip: For the more adventurous and eccentric, the straw may sound like something they can really own. I respect that. I recommend buying a steel Bombilla, it’s traditionally used in Argentina to drink Yerba Mate. I use it for coffee and tea myself in certain company. It’s definitely worth keeping in your kit.
[This is where you half expect me to insert some over-used,pseudo funny Seinfeld quote. I shall refrain.] Your soup days are over! Actually, that’s not totally true. With practice and a napkin or two you can pull it off, just use a smaller spoon, such as a teaspoon.
Tip: Carry a teaspoon on you just in case and also keep it in its own protective zip lock bag. Another great functional conversation piece is a Victorian Moustache Spoon. You can also find them online and relatively inexpensive ($20). The way it works is rather ingenious, the spoon is half covered by a little moustache shield with a wide entrance to scoop up the broth and a smaller exit on the rim side. A great addition to your growing moustache survival kit that demands respect.
All in all, with a little preparation, determination and practice you can get around the welcomed obstacle of the dapper crumb catcher you don. Remember, you are now eating for two. Bon Apetit!
Tip: Triangles are magical! Try cutting all your food on route to your mouth in the shape of a triangle. It’s easier to insert without catching on your duster. Also, I find the process of knowingly cutting my food into a shape activates something inside me that makes the act of eating more thoughtful, conscious and enjoyable.
Bombilla (Steel Straw)
Victorian Moustache Spoon (Optional but encouraged)
Stainless Steel Tea Spoon (Stored in Zip Lock)
Classy Handkerchief (Kept Damp & Stored in Zip Lock)
[If possible make up two kits and keep one in your car or backpack just in case – If this seems excessive, I ask you to try just the Fork, Knife and Hankerchief Combo]
Founding member and contributing writer & editor for “How to Grow a Moustache”, an innovative cutting edge blog dedicated to all things facial fur,travel & style. His mission: Create facial awareness and use his super powers [read:moustache] for good. Contact Douglas: firstname.lastname@example.org
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