Is Beard Packed With Bacteria?
Health & Beauty / /
Is beard clean or is a magnet for bacteria and germs.
There are many studies, according to which findings men are encourage to flaunt their facial hair. It was also usual in the last days to see headlines like "Some beards contain more poo than a toilet", because they collect bacteria. What is the truth?
Despite that, before reaching for a shaver or razor, it is recommended to evaluate the both sides, the headlines may have been misinterpreted.
Where did the story about beard “dirty as toilets” come from?
John Golobic, a microbiologist from Quest Diagnostics, decided to check this statement on a random sample, rather than reading the results of peer-reviewed studies. For that purpose he examined a TV news crew beard swabbing in Albuquerque, NM.
The results reported that several of the beard samples that were tested "contained a lot of normal bacteria, but some were comparable to toilets.” Golobic concluded: "There would be a degree of uncleanliness that would be somewhat disturbing."
Soon after going viral this study was exposed to skepticism. For instance, it was disputed for not mentioning swabbing clean-shaven men. Since bacteria gets on to all sorts of surfaces, including skin, this might have told us what we really need to know: Does clean-shaven face collect less bacteria than beard, and vice versa?
Professor Anthony Hilton, head of biological and biomedical sciences at Aston University published another research that looked at whether surgical masks caught bacteria falling from surgeons faces, and whether having a beard affected how many bacteria fell.
'What they found was that men with beards do harbor a significant number of bacteria, more than non-bearded men and women, and bearded surgeons wearing masks did shed more organisms from the beard outwards when they wiggled.' Dr Hilton said.
However he added that while there is evidence beards are filled with bugs, there is no proof this leads to health problems.
'It's not uncommon to find 20,000 bacteria on the skin, and this isn't harmful,' he added.
“Human beings are just laden with bacteria, some of which have the propensity to cause disease. But for the most part they’re all commensal organisms,” said Dr Hilton in a press release about his study. “They’re hanging around with us and we’re perfectly healthy and aren’t causing us any danger or harm.”
Generally there is harmful bacteria on surfaces in your office, supermarkets, bedrooms, the gym and many other places where people congregate together, as well as on oft-handled devices like smartphones, TV remotes, ATM machines, escalator handrails and gas pumps, but still we use them every day.