THEY MAY be best known for being fearsome warriors, who ruthlessly raided their way across Europe.
But Norse experts are urging Yorkshire’s menfolk to take fashion tips from the Vikings if they are to make the most out of their beards.
Experts from Jorvik Viking Festival have declared war on hair removal and are urging men who have been given razors for Christmas to exchange them for a healthy supply of vitamins and fish oil.
With less than two months to go before the annual Best Beard Contest – part of the Jorvik Viking Festival, which takes place in York from February 14 – organisers are suggesting that “real” men ditch the razor for the next couple of months if they are to pull off the ultimate Norse hipster look, with a luxurious facial hair.
“We know that many men will have received electric razors for Christmas, but in the middle of a cold winter, they would be far better to trade in their appliances for a hefty pile of vitamin pills and protein supplements – the best nutrition for anyone wanting to grow a healthy beard,” said Festival director, Danielle Daglan. “Viking-style bushy beards are absolutely on trend at the moment, adorning the faces of celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio, Ryan Gosling and Hugh Jackman in recent months, but you don’t grow a great beard overnight – it takes some cultivating.”
Following a Viking diet could be the way to start, according to consultant trichologist, Iain Sallis, who runs the website www.hairmedic.co.uk.
“The Vikings ate a diet loaded with oily fish and meat, which contain the very important sulphur-rich amino acids that our modern diets are often lacking – and this could explain why they were able to cultivate huge bushy beards.
“You need micronutrients such as iron, zinc, vitamin D and vitamin B12 to encourage optimal hair growth, and facial hair has a very fast growth rate 0.4mm per day - compared with the paltry 0.35mm per day of scalp hair - making it the fastest growing hair on the body,”
Iron-rich foods like Viking favourite oysters, liver, leafy green vegetables and brewers yeast, high quality proteins like meat, fish, cheese and lentils, should give your beard the Nordic look.
But there are some Viking methods you may wish to avoid - Viking men would wash their beards with urine to treat lice.