Louis Holland of The Blind Pig, Plymouth

Judge: Louis Holland

Plymouth barber extraordinare Louis tends to the whiskers of Mr DCBMC and many others in South West Beard Club. A complete perfectionist, he’s a wizard with the scissors and a generous and entertaining friend.

If you’ve seen our write-ups about Louis from previous years (here and here) you’ll see that he’s not allowed his own words.

Catch him at the barber station, at the bar, and at The Blind Pig on Mon, Tue, Thu and Fri each week.

Sponsor: Pitchers

Pitchers Pitchers opened recently, and the team are working hard to offer something different from the bar that occupied the site before.

Here’s Matthew Conway, the impressively-bearded General Manager, in his own words:

Pitchers is a city centre bar/restaurant/nightclub with internal decorations and interior fittings that were all sourced and made by local companies and our staff.

We pride ourselves on coming up with new and innovating ideas, be it things coming out of our kitchen, sourcing a new craft ale, the biggest and best new music, or hidden emerging talent. We strive to be the trendsetter, and don’t want to be another commercial chain.

Here at Pitchers we like to cater for all members of the public – from families, with our children’s section, to sports enthusiasts, with our live sport, table tennis, pool and football tables. There’s something for music lovers, food fanatics, and plenty for alcohol drinkers with cocktails for the ladies or craft beers and pitchers for the lads. We really do aim to tick all the boxes!

Our Friday night get-together is at Pitchers from 7pm. Come along and help us support this new venture for the city, and thank them for their generous support of #DCBMC2016!

Sponsor: The Blind Pig

The Blind PigThe Blind Pig barbershop and salon is run by husband-and-wife team Louis and Dani Holland.

Louis is the original inspiration behind the Devon & Cornwall Beard & Moustache Championships. Mr DCBMC was getting his beard tidied up in preparation for the British Beard & Moustache Championships in 2014, and Louis said “that sounds like brilliant fun, we should do one in Plymouth” – so we did!

Tucked away down the side of Jury’s Inn on Moon Street, at the edge of the city centre, the barbershop stocks top grooming brands Reuzel, Suavecito, Layrite, Pinaud Clubman, and more. Louis offers the full range of barbering services, from contours, slicks and flat tops to 60s mod styles, plus beard and moustache shaping and grooming, and wet shaves.

Dani is responsible for Mrs DCBMC’s ‘My Little Pony’ look, and also colours and styles the mermaid locks of Mariner Jack model Jess. An award-winning Master Colourist, she offers Elumen, Kerasilk Keratin blow-dries, balayage, and the full range of traditional and modern cutting and styling techniques.

They’re also two of the nicest people you could hope to meet. If you’re in or near Plymouth, we highly recommend you check them out.

Judge: Pete Moisan

Pete MoisanPete’s the tall redhead who catches everyone’s eye at beard and moustache competitions. He’s a professional hugger, and can often be found hiding behind his signature red-framed sunglasses (particularly if it’s ‘the morning after the night before’). In his own words…

Pete has been growing face fur on and off his entire adult life, and first got into the world of competitive bearding at the World Beard Championship in Brighton in 2007, after years of office teasing that he should enter. He achieved a creditable equal 4th (aka equal last, as no positions below 3rd are announced) in Natural Beard with Styled Moustache.

After shaving it all off for charity and spending a few years in the wilderness of having no proper beard, Pete came back for the British Championships in Bath in 2014, and again came equal 4th. He then won the Exeter competition and two titles at DCBMC 2015.

An Ambassador for DCBMC 2016 prize sponsor Mariner Jack, Pete will unfortunately be unable to attend this year’s British Beard & Moustache Championships due to a clash of dates. His first born is expected the same day – it was a tough call on which to attend…

On beard and moustache competitions, Pete says “they’re just like the Miss World beauty contests, only without the bitchiness, and more of the helpful styling hints. And beer.”

Supported by his long suffering wife and main stylist, Sadie (“he didn’t have a beard when we first got together, I’m sure”, she says, although she is now trying to change that story…), this is Pete’s first venture into judging. He isn’t sure what makes for the best beard yet, but when he sees/feels/tastes it, he’ll know.

Pete’s the only one of our judges to get away with a photogallery, because… well, how could we NOT publish these!13664713_10157387857990019_753468565_n
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Judge: Nik Bathe

Nik BatheNik is an invaluable DCBMC Offical Minion, and 2015 Ladies Handmade Champion. She’s also one of Mr & Mrs DCBMC’s bestest friends. In her own words…

As well as being DCBMC 2015 Handmade Champion, Nik is the proud owner of a DCBMC Lite: Truro certificate for ‘shameless self-promotion’ (when drunk). She is delighted to make her debut as a judge for this year’s DCBMC. A relative newcomer to the world of beard competitions, last year Nik manned the DCBMC merch stand, sold raffle tickets and assisted with the raffle draw, and has been roped into doing the same this year. Plus the judging. [You were SO not roped in, you bloody volunteered! Ed.]

Nik lives in Cornwall, where people pay her to do their social media, build their websites and keep them organised. When not working she drinks real ale, takes photographs, runs, walks and plays the ukulele (but never ‘When I’m Cleaning Windows’).

She says “I’m really looking forward to the beards (and moustaches), the beer and the bands. It’s going to be an amazing day!”

Judge: Gina Dyer

Gina DyerIf you’re at a beard and moustache competition and you hear giggling, it’s probably Gina. With her love of vintage style frocks she’s usually the best-dressed woman in the room – so one way or another she’ll definitely catch your attention! In her own words…

I’m proud to say I was born within the sound of the Bow Bells. My family keeps growing – I have 3 grandchildren and the 4th on the way in September. My son Jason and his family are coming to DCBMC too, so we are helping to bring family together though the wonderful beard and moustache community .

I’ve had a lifetime weakness for the furry folk, particularly that face fungus that is a moustache! Since meeting Jim, I have become involved with The Handlebar Club. I’ve travelled to many competitions to cheer him along, met some fantastic friends and am learning what a wonderful community the beard and moustache world is.

It’s a pleasure and honour to be judging at DCBMC.

Judge: Becky Jones

Becky JonesBecky is responsible for the fantastic freestyle facial fuzz sported by Brendan Johnson at beard competitions across the country. In her own words…

Becky was a tad surprised 3 years ago to hear that her husband was planning to drive with his sister to Stuttgart for 2 nights to look at a load of blokes with beards.

Since their return from that escapade, she has been increasingly involved in the ‘grooming and styling’ arm of the competitive bearding community, which she likens to Crufts. Becky does the styling and a lot of the grooming – Brendan gets the attention in the Freestyle category. Thankfully there is no obedience or agility section to worry about!

Becky loves a beardy weekend and really enjoys the company of the beardy folks because it’s a fun, open, accepting and slightly eccentric bunch of people. What’s not to like?

She will be looking for a touch of panache and character in the successful show-dogs, and promises not to feel any bits of them besides the facial hair…

Judge: Chaz Singh

Chaz SinghLocal Labour councillor Chaz is a Plymouth legend – always out and about meeting people, helping people, representing many good causes and being an all-round top bloke. He’s also fond of a selfie or two – see Beards of Plymouth for his fantastic photogallery of bearded locals. In his own words…

Quite simply, Chaz is #thatmanwiththeturban. A familiar sight in Plymouth and an honorary Janner (according to Reuters), after emigrating from Birmingham in 2002.

As a Sikh he has never cut his hair, and that makes him pretty special. His beard is uncut, his turban is his crown, and that is his identity.

Chaz put the ‘T’ in Urban Outfitters, and #TurbanOutfitters pretty much went viral – so now he’s a global superstar too!

Follow @plymouthchaz to find out about everything he’s up to.

Judge: Simon Sheffield

Simon SheffieldSimon is an old friend of Mrs DCBMC’s [Oi! Less of the old!] and his dulcet Brummie tones have been heard at many beard and moustache competitions across the country. In his own words…

Simon first got into competitive bearding when he attended the British Beard & Moustache Championships in Bath in 2014, and although he just went to see what it was all about he ended up taking 1st Place in Natural Goatee! He followed this up by with 1st Place in Partial Beard Styled at DCBMC 2015.

Around the Summer of 2015 Simon became involved in Beating Bowels Cancer’s project ‘Me, My Beard, and Why’ to raise awareness for the charity’s Decembeard appeal. This project featured bearded men whose lives have been affected by bowel cancer; Simon had lost his mum to bowel cancer in 1999.

From this Simon became an ambassador for the Beating Bowel Cancer charity Decembeard appeal. He raised almost £3,000 through great things like the Be Beard! competition in Walsall and selling Be Beard! tshirts, but also through foolish things such as shaving off his double award-winning beard.

Simon has re-grown his beard, and within 7 months it got him 2nd Place in Natural Goatee at Beard On! in Derbyshire. He has been put forward to be a Decembeard ambassador again this year, but he won’t shave his beard off again…

Simon is a member of The British Beard Club, is involved with the Black Country Beardsmen, and has a cat.

He also has a wife, the lovely Sharon, but you wouldn’t know that looking at his Facebook photos. It’s all about the cat…

Judge: Ryan Pike

Ryan PikeRyan can regularly be seen at beard and moustache competitions across the UK and further afield. He’s also one of the nicest people you could hope to meet. (And daftest, but you can’t have everything!) In his own words…

Born and raised in the West Country, Ryan is a proud member of both The Handlebar Club (HBC) and the West Vlaamse Snorrenclub (Brugge Moustache Club).

Originally growing a moustache for November 2011 and shaving it off, his daughter said he ‘was no longer Dad without one’ so he quickly had to grow it back and has had one ever since.

A competitor in nearly every UK and European event over the last few years, Ryan is currently ranked the UK No. 2 and World No. 11 Natural Moustache and is well known at nearly all facial hair clubs and establishments across both the country and continent, often appearing in time-honoured HBC fancy dress or tweed.