18 insane photos from the Oscars of facial hair

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Men gathered in Austria to show off their Dalí moustaches and freestyle beards alike.
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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

More than 350 hirsute men from around the world descended on the sleepy Austrian town of Leogang for 2015’s World Beard and Moustache Championships.

Held biannually, the event seeks to find and award the best beards, moustaches, and partial beards in the world, with each man gunning for one of three coveted prizes across 18 categories.

Keep scrolling to see what it’s like at the hairiest awards showcase in the world.


The World Beard and Moustache Championships are the pinnacle of facial hair competition.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Men come from all over the world to have their facial hair judged.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

The World Beard and Moustache Association is the governing body which selects the event’s organizers.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

The association chose the East Bavarian Beard Club to put on this year’s event.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Entrants fall into three main groups: moustaches, partial beards, and full beards.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Within each group are categories like “Dalí Moustache,” “Fu Manchu,” and “Garibaldi.”

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Each group has a freestyle category that allows for total creativity.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Some categories allow the use of styling aids to achieve signature looks.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Others require that facial hair be in its natural state.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

The facial hair at the championships certainly runs the gamut.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Some entrants are more conservative.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Some look straight out of a Tim Burton film.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Judges choose winners based on factors like creativity, beauty, heft, and fullness.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

The 2013 event was held in Germany.

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The 2017 event will return to the US by way of Austin, Texas.

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American Armin Bielefeldt and his star-shaped beard are regulars at the showcase.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

Though the official world championships only occur biannually, similar events have cropped up around the world.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch

For example, the Just for Men National Beard and Moustache Championships will take place in Brooklyn, New York, this November.

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Getty/Jan Hetfleisch