The global hipster movement has spawned a proliferation of big beards on young men from Bondi to Brooklyn, Brunswick to Brixton.
But the fashion for luxuriant facial hair among laptop-toting, skinny jean-wearing twenty- and thirty-somethings has led to an unexpected side-effect: Beard drag in the water.
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For “lumbersexuals” who like to hit the pool when they’re not downing craft beers, starting micro businesses on Etsy or riding their fixie bikes, bushranger beards can cut down swim times by making them less aerodynamic in the water.
Thankfully, help is at hand thanks to a new swimming cap designed specifically for the bearded man.
The elastane headwear has flaps that wrap under the chin, packing the wearer’s beard against the face to protect against drag in the water.
The prototype, created by Virgin Trains, was created as a response comments on swimming forums about the hampering effects of a sizeable chin-wig.
It will be trialled at the Great North Swim, Lake Windermere, in England, on June 12-14.