Are Mustaches Creepy? Men & Women Tell Us What They Really Think

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It's time to open the discussion about mustaches. Not beards, but mustaches that exist alone without the beard. 

It's a difficult look to pull off for many men, and it's always a good time to ask what women really think — so I asked the ladies their feelings on mustaches.

Are mustaches creepy? Only OK in November, because it's for a good cause? Or that they create the best creepy mustache memes?

Are mustaches attractive?

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In the 19th century, mustaches were worn "to underscore the natural virtues, and supposedly imprescriptible rights, of men." 

Wearing a mustache meant you were masculine.

Mustaches are the ultimate expression of masculinity that was for the most part used by men in armies to appear ultra-masculine. But later on, the mustache was adopted by civilian men as well to assert their dominance.

There were all types of mustache styles, such as a handlebar mustache, a pencil mustache, and a horseshoe mustache.

But into the 20th century, the masculine use of facial hair decreased as there was a rise in beliefs that there was possible disease and infections living in a man's beard. The mustache stereotypes were that the men were not clean, probably infected with diseases and/or insects and that they were not someone you would want around you or working for you.

Women started finding clean-shaven faces much more attractive in the 20th century.

Facial hair was unwelcome as it marked someone as lower class, while those who had a clean-shaven face were seen as disciplined, youthful, and energetic.

But now, many people like mustaches, especially when combined with a beard. 

Do ladies like mustaches?

Perhaps a mustache is the sexiest thing a man can do to lure a woman into his clutches? Or something that only our favorite mustached-man Brad Pitt can pull off?

Here's what some women had to say about their feelings on the "creepy mustache":

Yep, they're hot.

1. "I don’t care for Brad's mustache, but I do love those hipster 'staches that dudes with impeccable fashion sense sport. I think they're really hot and I'm totally down with the look," says Chelsea, 29.

No thanks.

2. "Nope. They are makeout-killers and make everyone look like a creepy uncle," says Kate, 33.

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3. "I generally associate mustaches with the 70s and cheesy movies and Freddie Mercury. My husband and his friends like to wear mustaches from those old-school candy/toy vending machines when we go bowling."

4. "One time he got one that actually looked pretty snazzy, but I have yet to convince him to do it, even for charity purposes," says Jill, 34.

5. "It would remind me too much of my dad who, based on old photos from the 70s had a ‘stache that looked like it was straight out of an adult movie. It's totally creepy and not my scene," says Lynne. 31.

6. "Why would a good-looking, 30-something guy spoil his sweet face and belie the kindness in his soft, hazel eyes with a thick, hairy specimen better suited to an old-school Soviet dictator? Hon, I know you're a little kinky but I truly hope the 'stache isn't part of some "I'll be Stalin to your helpless peasant" bedroom role-play scenario. (If it is ... wow, did I dodge a bullet!)" says Alex Alexander.

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It really depends on the guy and the 'stache.

7. "If the face can handle the 'stache and look good, then go for it. I know some guys who look pretty good with a handlebar mustache. My husband, however, does not have a face that can do this. He can do a goatee thing, sometimes, but that's it. He's in a job right now where he can't have facial hair, and that's pretty much my favorite part of his job…" says Colleen, 30.

8. "It's a rare breed of man who can pull the ‘stache off without looking creepy. If you are one of those, do it. Be a special flower," says Autumn, 25.

9. "I think it depends on the guy. Are we talking Pornstache from OITNB (creepy) or Ron Swanson (total stud muffin)? I think what makes the difference is how a mustachioed guy carries himself. It’s like a superpower: With a great mustache, comes great responsibility," says Alexandra, 24.

Actually, a mustache is the only bearable facial hair there is.

10. "Meh. I prefer a clean face, but a mustache is probably the one thing I could go for as long as it's something maintained and regularly groomed," Jen, 36.

Some women do believe that mustaches are attractive, some don't have a preference, and some women hate them. 

Are mustaches in? Well, that depends. The way a man's mustache is perceived might simply have to do with where he lives. 

A 2015 survey found that location plays a big role in the creepiness of a mustache, with the mustache considered a trend in Oregon, North Carolina, and Nevada. Go to Idaho, Michigan, West Virginia, South Dakota, or Delaware, though, and you're far more likely to see clean-shaven faces.

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Amanda Chatel is a writer who divides her time between NYC and Paris. She's a regular contributor to Bustle and Glamour, with bylines at Harper's Bazaar, The Atlantic, Forbes, Livingly, Mic, The Bolde, Huffington Post and others. Follow her on Twitter or on Facebook for more.