Former rock musician and current author and entrepreneur Jack Passion has been making an admirable living off of something most men actively remove from themselves on a semi-daily basis. Author of “The Facial Hair Handbook” and multiple world champion “beardsman” in the “Full Beard, Natural” category, Passion is a star of the IFC television series “Whisker Wars” and was most recently featured in Morgan Spurlock‘s new documentary “Mansome,” executive produced by Ben Silverman, Jason Bateman and Will Arnett. I recently got the chance to briefly interview Passion via email.
Ezra Stead: First of all, and I’m sure you get this all the time, how long did it take you to grow your beard to such length and fullness?
Jack Passion: I’ve had this beard for almost exactly nine years. I keep it trimmed, but this length would probably take 3-4 years to achieve. My book’s first law is “Healthy Man, Healthy Beard,” and I attribute the thickness of my beard all to my diet and health. I also take VitaBeard, the beard vitamin, which is very easy and helps quite a bit.
ES: Would you ever consider styling it in some weird, unique way, in order to compete in “Full Beard, Groomed” categories, as opposed to “Full Beard, Natural”?
JP: I have done styled categories in the past. I already look silly enough as it is, and the products required for those designs ruin the hair. When you see the German beard-styling masters with their beards un-styled, the beards don’t look great. I view the beard as a natural thing, and so I like to present it naturally and care for it naturally.
ES: My beard doesn’t seem to grow past about two inches. Are there any special techniques or products you’ve used to encourage yours, or is it pretty much all genetic?
JP: A lot of it’s genetic, but facial hair changes a great deal as you get older, so don’t give up hope! I mentioned VitaBeard, which has really changed the way I grow facial hair for the better, but I would also recommend waiting, as your beard grows in cycles. In your case, maybe it’ll plateau at two inches for several months before starting to grow again.
ES:How did you get involved with the documentary “Mansome”?
JP: I wrote a book called “The Facial Hair Handbook” and had won a few world titles in beard competitions, so when Morgan Spurlock’s team needed a beard, they came to me.
ES: Why did you decide to “quit and renounce music”?
JP: This is a long conversation, one that I absolutely love to have, but one that is outside the scope of “Mansome” and male grooming. Perhaps another time?