How One Small Invention is One Big Win For Beardsmen

Virgin Trains, official train partner to the Great North Swim, has launched an innovative swim cap for bearded men – the Beard Cap - which will be trialed with customers competing at the Great North Swim, Lake Windermere, June 12 – 14, 2015. Responding to debates on swimming forums about big beards causing drag, Virgin Trains commissioned its own research which revealed that over one in ten men (12 per cent) connected their beard to slower swim times, and nearly a quarter of men feel their beards hinder their sports performance. For swimmers, spectators and supporters planning a weekend away to the Lakes during the Great North Swim, there are exclusive discounts of up to 50% across Virgin Trains First and Standard Advance Fares.

Triathletes, swimmers, lend me your beards! Virgin Trains (yes, like choo-choo) has designed a new product that allows bearded athletes to keep their faces nice and bushy without sacrificing speed in the water.

The aptly named Beard Cap is still in its prototype phase, and is slated to be trialed at the UK’s Great North Swim – an event for which Virgin Trains is an official partner – taking place June 12-14th at Lake Windermere. Made of Lyrca, the cap is adjustable and reusable, stretching down from the head cap to cover the beard and tuck it tightly against the wearer’s face, thus reducing drag in the water. And also making you look a little like a Mortal Kombat character. SWIM OVER HERE!

According to Virgin Trains, their research shows that 46% of British men are trashing their straight razors and instead opting to grow their scruff, with 22% of those beardos letting their beards grow to sizeable lengths. This undoubtedly leads to the question; can a man have a bushy beard and still be an athlete without it hindering his performance? Virgin Trains certainly thinks so – enough to commission the research and development of the Beard Cap, and debut it at the Great North Swim. But don’t expect to see it in stores anytime soon – according to representatives, the cap is still in its infancy prototype stages, and an official release date has yet to be confirmed.


However the advent of a product such as this is more than just a step forward for water-based athletes; the creation of the Beard Cap demonstrates how both society and businesses are evolving and growing to accept beards as the new norm on a global scale. With the increased popularity of the facial hair renaissance, it has moved beyond “trend” and has instead become a “way of life”, with grooming products, oils, and beard-based fashion tips increasing in popularity, and proving that stylistically the beard is an overwhelmingly popular choice. The beard isn’t a fleeting flavor of the month and it’s here to stay.

With the debut of Virgin Trains’ Beard Cap, it is apparent that businesses and companies are starting to take notice, and create content and products geared specifically toward the beardsman of today. Now we just need an invisible shield that can block random people from touching our facial hair.



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