Make it Movember!

Everyone expects a proliferation of pink come October. Everything from product packaging to the Green Bay Packers wear the color as a visual call for breast cancer awareness and fight for the cure. To keep momentum moving, November now carries on the crusade against cancer with a style all it’s own—but it’s a look that definitely has to grow on you.

Welcome to Movember! With the goal of getting guys to get checked early for prostate and testicular cancer—painless procedures most men find painfully awkward—a small group of mates in Australia decided that the best way to spread the message was by sporting moustaches or “mo’s” as they’re known Down Under. After all, though the look comes naturally, many guys go to great lengths to keep a follicle-free face. So what better way to spark conversation than by letting the mo grow? When asked why, Mo Bros—as participants refer to each other—enlighten on the topic of men’s health, specifically cancer prevention and early detection.

And the issue is a hairy one. According to Movember’s official Web site, a shocking 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. One statistic not so surprising is that 24-percent of men are less likely to visit a doctor than women, and that’s hair-raising.

With just thirty committing in 2003, the moustached movement has now gone mainstream encompassing 14 countries and 854,288 registered supporters in 2011. Among that number are thousands of official Mo Sistas, women who stand by their men—whether significant other, father, friend, or brother—and throw in with fundraising and donations. And the monetary amount is becoming momentous as last year alone brought in $126.3 million dollars (US) internationally. In the United States, $15 million was raised with 82.3% going directly to front-line fighters such as the Prostate Cancer Foundation and LIVESTRONG.

Before starting your ‘stache, visit and sign up. You can grow it alone, join an existing team, or start one of your own. “The more I learned about Movember, the more I loved their message and fun process involved in helping a very worthy cause,” says Carlos Covarrubias, account manager at Skate One and captain of local fundraising team, the Mo Rippers. “My moustache brings up the topic, creates a dialogue, and raises consciousness.”

However, there are things to know before the mo. You must start clean-shaven on November 1st and no beard or goatee allowed—strictly stache. But regardless of gender, keep Movember’s motto of “changing the face of men’s health” in mind and have yours—or the face of someone you love—play a part. Together, Mo Bros and Mo Sistas can make these next 30 days make a difference.

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