Beards and facial hair are sprouting up all over. Everywhere you look, men are growing beards like lumberjacks and curling their mustaches like Doc Holliday did back in his day.

However, these beards and mustaches can be more useful than just a facial decoration. Many men who are clean-shaven 11 months of the year give their razors a rest in November to draw attention to serious men’s health issues.

We’ve all heard of No-Shave November, but do we all know the cause behind it?

No-Shave November has caught on like wildfire, but did you know that there is an actual cause to these men, and yes, also women, participating? No-Shave November is actually a movement to support and raise awareness for men’s cancer.

According to noshave.org, the goal is grow awareness by embracing the wild facial or body hair – hair that most men lose while battling cancer  – and let it grow free. No-Shave November participants are asked to take the money they would have spent on “manscaping” and donate it instead to organizations working to educate the public about cancer prevention.

The tradition of growing facial hair has been around for centuries. However, nearly a decade ago is when a family who was impacted by cancer decided to use facial hair growth as a way to raise money for charitable cause, and No-Shave November was born.

The eight children of Matthew Hill decided to start the movement after their father passed away of colon cancer in 2007. The charity formed in 2009. Today, No-Shave November is a family-run, web-based nonprofit organization.

It’s easy to get involved with No Shave November. All men need to do is grow a beard or mustache and ladies can get involved as well by giving their legs and underarms a break.

Millions of people participate around the world. Just search the hashtag #NoShaveNovember to see the wooly-ness in full effect. Some of the organizations funded by No Shave November are the Prevent Cancer foundation, Fight Colorectal Cancer and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Even if you aren’t ready to skip the shaving for a full 30 days, you can still donate to the cause.

To date, No Shave November has raised over $2 million in donations from the money that would have otherwise been spent on razors and other grooming products, as well as other donations.

When growing a beard, mustache, or any sort of body hair for that matter, show the world you are giving back to an organization fighting back against cancer. The Matthew Hill Foundation encourages No-Shave November participants to spread the word by using social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to connect with others neglecting to shave in November. Use the hashtag #NoShaveNovember when posting a picture so others can see you joining in on the fun.

For more information on No Shave November, visit www.no-shave.org. On the website, participants can set up a profile to donate to the cause. You can also see who else is participating, how much money has been raised and share pictures of your face fuzz.

Faith Few can be reached by email at ffew@tullahomanews.com.