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Orem cops to get healthier, more attractive as they grow beards this month?

Published November 15, 2013 4:24 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The Orem Department of Public Safety announced Friday that it was letting deputies grow beards as part of a Sub for Santa fundraiser.

But if science is to be trusted, Orem cops might want to make that policy permanent; according to a study, men with facial hair are healthier and more attractive.

Elite Daily reported earlier this week on a study on men's facial hair, which was published this year in the journal Evolution and Human Behavior. The study found that people see men with facial hair as more attractive, while a second study discovered beards block up to 95 percent of UV rays.

Police in Orem also aren't the only ones growing facial hair for a good cause; Cache County sheriff's deputies grew out beards in October as part of a fundraiser to fight domestic violence.

Beards in Utah can be something of a cultural taboo among some in the Mormon faith, and I myself spent many years chaffing (literally!) under BYU's iron-fisted anti-beard despot-ery.

But science now teaches us that we need to take a second look at these rules — from police policies to cultural norms. Apparently, it's a matter of public health.

— Jim Dalrymple II