The Stubble Trouble - An Almost Missed Chance

Talk about a "radiant face" and what is the first thing that comes to your mind? Quite honestly, a woman, err, a beautiful woman. 

Let's face it, one would never associate a radiant face to a man. Doesn't matter if you're a Greek God, it is never going to happen. 

Partly due to our own fault! 

What is touted as a woman's prettiest jewel and perhaps every woman's dream, we men play it down as an inside job. So we pay, and pay big time.

In this post, I'll make an argument that a radiant face is no longer considered a luxury just for the femme fatale. Men too need to pay as much – and on certain occasions even more – attention to how they look.

First impressions can at times be the last


Be it your first date or first day of college, a meeting with your prospective father-in-law or an interview with your prospective employer, you need to look great in order to walk the talk. Men, like women, spend a lot of time in front of the mirror – setting their mane, choosing the right cologne, and gearing up perfectly for the occasion.

With selfie becoming the new age mantra of communication and self-expression, looking chic is no longer a matter of choice. You've got to perfect that effing face!

Moi sporting a stubble

Clash of cultures - Shunned if unshaven


According to an estimate by Irish author and philosopher Charles Handy, the average working man will spend nearly 100,000 hours of his life at the office shaving just to look professional.

I could probably get away with a stubble at an Indian workplace. But in South Korea where I stayed and worked for over 6 years, sporting a beard could've resulted in public embarrassment. You are expected to shave before meeting a client or someone high in the ranks.

Clean-shaven or bearded - Choose your pick

A dark-colored business suit coupled with a tie is given attention to in all business meetings but almost every time the emphasis shifts to a clean-shaven face. There is a certain distinction about the clean-shaven look which the wearer of whiskers may never possess.

South Koreans neither enjoy nor admire an unshaven face, look or style. For them, it symbolizes a state of depression or even neglect of personal hygiene in some cases.

Missed chances


Rewind to circa 2010. Exhausted by back-to-back meetings and a late night conference call, I once reached the Lionbridge office - my second employer in Korea where I worked as a Solution Architect - sporting a stubble. Suddenly I realized the growing density of whispers around and felt like all eyes were on me.

Sporting a mustache

It was humiliating!
"Are you fine, Rahul? You look unwell." a colleague needled me with his sarcastic, offhand remark.
"Am I hearing this right?" I mumbled.
"Yes. I'm fine and dandy. What makes you think otherwise?” pat came my reply.
Hectic work days were a routine for me, but clearly something wasn't quite working for them.
"We're leaving for the Samsung headquarters in an hour in case you forgot." he said.
"Of course I remember, Kim."
He literally dragged me to a quiet corner.
"The stubble. You have an hour to get rid of it."
When I explained him that I couldn't shave just so we could leave on time, he sighed and suggested how grave the consequences of not shaving could be, especially on the business.
"You need to look sharp, not worn out." he stressed.
The very next minute I rushed to a convenience store located in the office basement and started hunting for a shaving kit.

And there it was. Gillette, the most trusted name worldwide. The best a man can get.

I looked no further.

Another five minutes in the Men’s Room. I returned ... looking dapper than you'd imagine.

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I tag the following friends to take up the #WillYouShave Challenge.


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#WillYouShave
[This post is a part of #WillYouShave activity at BlogAdda in association with Gillette]