December 3, 2012, - 9:01 am

Yeah That’s Culture: Mid-East Men Get Mustache Implants

By Debbie Schlussel

Few men look good in a mustache (other than the Marlboro Man and Tom Selleck, who long ago shaved off his). And contrary to popular Islamic belief, most of them aren’t Muslims nor do they hail from that region. Despite that, the Muslim world never got out of the Burt Reynolds ’70s trend, and Muslim men from all over are now plowing their money into mustache implants. Don’t you worry, though. The nose job is still the most popular cosmetic surgery in the Arab Muslim world. Saddam Hussein may be dead, but his “look” lives on. Ah, the great advances of technology.

Hot . . .

Not . . .

Oprah Mustache Art by David Lunde/Lundesigns, Design by Debbie Schlussel

Thick, handsome mustaches have long been prized by men throughout the Middle East as symbols of masculine virility, wisdom and maturity.

But not all mustaches are created equal, and in recent years, increasing numbers of Middle Eastern men have been going under the knife to attain the perfect specimen.

Turkish plastic surgeon Selahattin Tulunay says the number of mustache implants he performs has boomed in the last few years. He now performs 50-60 of the procedures a month, on patients who hail mostly from the Middle East and travel to Turkey as medical tourists.

He said his patients generally want thick mustaches as they felt they would make them look mature and dignified.

“For some men who look young and junior, they think (a mustache) is a must to look senior … more professional and wise,” he said. “They think it is prestigious.”

Pierre Bouhanna is a Paris-based surgeon who, for the past five years, has been performing increasing numbers of mustache implants. He says the majority of his patients come from the United Arab Emirates, Iran, Lebanon and Turkey, with men traveling to France to have the surgery performed. . . .

Both surgeons use a technique — follicular unit extraction — in which groups of hairs are taken from areas of dense hair growth to be implanted in the mustache area.

Bouhanna said the patients were generally aged between 30 and 50, and were able to fly home the day after they had the procedure, which costs about $7,000 (€5,500) and is performed under local anesthetic.

By the way, forcibly shaving off a man’s mustache is considered a way to dishonor him. And the mustache has political significance:

The American diplomat Joel Barlow, who in 1795 was posted as U.S. consul to Algiers, wrote to his wife that he had grown a thick black mustache, which gave him “the air of a tiger,” and had proved useful in his work in the region.

More than 200 years later, a unit of American Marines in Iraq’s Sunni stronghold of Fallujah attempted to follow his example in 2004, growing mustaches in an attempt to help them win local sympathies.

In Turkey, different styles of mustache carry their own political nuances. According to one research paper, mustaches with drooping sides signify a conservative, nationalist bent, left-wingers favor mustaches like Stalin, while a “political religious” mustache is carefully groomed, with “cleanliness as its guiding principle.

Apparently, Yosemite Sam lived in the wrong era . . . and the wrong region. But I don’t think that Marine gambit in Fallujah went over too well. In case you forgot, the mustachioed savages of Fallujah burned Americans contractors to a crisp and hung them on display to the rest of their cheering pack.

It just goes to show how backward the greater Arabian society is that they place such importance on facial hair.

(Thanks to reader Skunky for the tip.)

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21 Responses

Great column DS! I knew it was Moooooslim insanity & you summed it up interestingly (and Humourously!).

Skunky on December 3, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Nothing can make moooooooooslime look good. Very unsanitary, so it fits

    As goes... on December 3, 2012 at 11:51 am

      I’d have to disagree with Debbie – Muslim men are real men and make no apologies for looking and behaving like men in the West used to behave a long time ago.

      The Islamic world still has its balls – the West are filled with eunuchs.

      I live in a part of the country where no one looks in askance when a guy wears a beard! It makes me feel like a man and no – you don’t have to be a Muslim not to copy our slack-jawed times!

      NormanF on December 3, 2012 at 12:14 pm

        “Muslim men are real men and make no apologies for looking and behaving like men in the West used to behave a long time ago.”

        Men in the West used to suicide bomb themselves, stone women for being raped and throw acid in young girl’s faces? Where did this happen in the West?

        DS_ROCKS! on December 3, 2012 at 2:09 pm

          Men used to be masculine, they knew who they were, they wiped out the savages, tamed the frontier and made hearth and home safe for women and children.

          They no longer do any of those things. Matriarchies don’t last.

          Men have been hirsute for centuries. Something changed in the 20th Century that has led men to become ashamed of their male nature. Sure, Muslim men fight and kill. The question is whether Western men can also embrace that primal quality.

          Kill or be killed. The Muslim World respects honor and strength not servility and cowardice. If we want to be effeminate, they will continue to despise us and good people will continue to be killed.

          The old ideas of being a man deserve to be brought back from the brink of extinction.

          NormanF on December 3, 2012 at 6:13 pm


As a man who wears a beard – I have to say wearing facial hair is a sign of manliness!

Clean-shaven men in the West are the “new women.” In my youth I used to wear a mustache but I went to a beard because of my weak chin.

Most men actually look better with a well groomed beard! I don’t like the fashion trend with men looking effeminate and I could give a damn about the dominant social custom.

Orthodox Jewish men all wear beards! The Torah forbids shaving the corners of one’s head and of course Islam ripped off another venerable Jewish tradition.

NormanF on December 3, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    Totally correct about Orthodox Judaism, Norman. How does a self-described Orthodox Jewish woman disdain the wearing of facial hair? My husband keeps his beard neatly trimmed and since I cut his hair, I leave peyot but they only come to his jaw bone and get tucked behind his ears. I’ve been wanting to get him a small curling iron so he can curl them tightly and let them hang in front, Yemenite style. haha,kidding.

    I: Huh? It’s fraud to equate my comments about the absurd mustache implants that Arab Muslims engage in with Orthodox Jewish beards. RIF – Reading Is Fundamental. DS

    Italkit on December 4, 2012 at 3:18 am

      Huh? no, but you are making comments about wearing facial hair in general in a disparaging way, e.g. “Few men look good in a mustache ”
      “Apparently, Yosemite Sam lived in the wrong era . . . and the wrong region. .. It just goes to show how backward the greater Arabian society is that they place such importance on facial hair.”

      That last comment would seem to imply that you don’t see facial hair as important and neither should anyone else.

      Italkit on December 4, 2012 at 10:31 am


On his latest show, Tom Selleck still wears his mustache – he’s much older now and still looks ruggedly handsome.

They don’t make men like that any more – men who are proud to look like men!

Yosemite Sam would probably whoop Muslim ass. I’d say bring him back!

NormanF on December 3, 2012 at 12:24 pm


    Yes on the show “Blue Bloods” Tom Selleck is the man. It’s one of the few shows on See the BS channel that I watch. I don’t think on today’s prime time TV there are any real men with “staches” anymore.

    Ken b on December 3, 2012 at 9:29 pm

I find it odd that ragheads would have to get medical treatment in order to grow facial hair. Most of them I have seen seem to be hairy as hell, even their women. And, I bet Oprah wouldn’t have any problem growing a thick, disgusting mustache, either.

RT on December 3, 2012 at 1:10 pm

    What they produce on their own is probably clumpy or splotchy. Also, the ones who get that surgery are not always wealthy. Once you add the round trip airfare to the medical bill, you are probably looking at someone’s life savings in the Arab World. The insanity of spending money for something as meaningless as a mustache tells you about Islamic culture. I wonder if any of them give up “The Hajj” for this?

    Worry01 on December 3, 2012 at 2:42 pm

I can’t help but chuckle at the thought of Muslims probably considering the Beatles to be the ultimate symbols of “decadent western culture”…that is, until the Sgt. Pepper album was released. Then they were probably looked upon as “wise, pious, virile prophets.”

Incidentally, there are some famous grown men who simply cannot grow mustaches. I believe David Bowie had to wear a fake one for his role in the movie “The Prestige.” I seriously doubt that Justin Bieber will ever sprout any facial hair either.

Irving on December 3, 2012 at 2:32 pm

Tom Selleck was a bit goofy….for you youngsters..FYI.. REAL MEN are and were the likes of Sean Connery,Gilbert Roland,Richard Harris,Clint Eastwood,James Garner,Steve McQueen,Yul Brynner,Jack Palance,Charlton cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Yes, I realize you don’t know who have of them are?

Jack Kates III on December 3, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    And going back a little further, John Wayne, Dana Andrews, Gary Cooper, Clark Gable, and Robert Montgomery.

    Little Al on December 3, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Funnily enough, the most authentic of Islamic beards come without the mustache. You’ll see guys w/ maybe heads shaved or mustaches shaved, but not the beards.

Infidel on December 3, 2012 at 6:35 pm

“Follicular UNIT extraction?”

Bascom on December 3, 2012 at 7:01 pm

Debbie I knew that the dopey muslim ragheads for the most part were certifiable. What I didn’t know was that these retards were getting hair transplants on their upper lips. I can just see Achmed going to a clinic in Dubai looking at the catalog and wondering to himself should I go for the scruffy rat look of Ahmadinejihad or the opinionated psychobabble look of Docturd Phil. Decisions, decisions. Anyway too bad Romney lost because we didn’t get to see ole Snidley Whiplash Axelroid shave his greasey facial fleatrap off. That and I always knew that the Oprag was the man in her and Gale King’s relationship. Just let it grow out Oprah we don’t care. Back to the muslims. I’ve always wondered why they have so many bald camels over there in the Middle East. Now I know.

Ken b on December 3, 2012 at 10:45 pm

….Deb… Don’t forget the irrepressable free man Tony Stark, whose penchant for facial hair is only exceeded by his defense of Constitutionally-defined property rights….

Nick Fury on December 4, 2012 at 12:30 am

Mustache aka/”cookie duster”

CornCoLeo on December 4, 2012 at 8:41 am

If I had the kind of money they have, I wouldn’t get a mustache, I would do like an old trucker and get my Peterbuilt.

RT on December 5, 2012 at 2:45 pm

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