Brian Delaurenti and Johnathan Dahl have been friends since the age of 8, and have been inseparable ever since. They do everything together if they can, and “bearding” wasn’t going to be any different. At 23-years-old, their beards started their tremendous growth, and now at the ages of 25, the rest is history.

The Gay Beards formed back in July of 2014, after they had put in a lot of thought about starting a project that was bigger than themselves. The two had been talking about creating an art-based platform they could share with the world, allowing others to feel both creatively and emotionally inspired to live out their own dreams. Once the first flowers landed themselves in their beards, the rest really was history. 

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It’s safe to say that you two are beard experts. How do you keep those bad boys looking so awesome all the time? Any products you recommend to other beard aficionados?

Our beards can be ferocious beasts, tamed only by shampoo, beard oil, beard balm and a good boar-bristle brush. Each beard is different though, and [thus] requires a different set of love. It is very important to always try new beard products to see which ones work best with your beard, because you never know what you might find. If we had to recommend one thing above all, it’s going to be beard oil. This will help keep your beard soft, smelling good and free of itches. Nobody wants an itchy beard.

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We’ve seen you put a ton of interesting items on, in and around your beards. We like to think of it as beard art. What’s the craziest and most challenging beard art you’ve done yet?

The most challenging items are always the heaviest. Our beards can hold quite a lot of things, but even Skittles proved to be too much for them (that’s another story). The craziest thing that we have put in our beards so far would definitely have to be the moss beards. We know now that an absurd amount of micro-creatures call moss home, but had we known that when we took the pictures, moss beards might not have ever been a thing.

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Have you ever walked in public with these crazy beards before? If so, describe the reactions.

We had a photoshoot a while back for OUT Magazine that led us into downtown Portland with full on flower beards. Both of us were rather curious how the general public would handle the beard decor, but needless to say, the honks, waves and clapping led us to believe we fit in just fine.

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Dark or milk chocolate?

If we are baking, milk chocolate. If we are just going straight to the source, dark chocolate.

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Describe your beard brainstorm process in three words.

Will… It… Fit…?

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Name a time where your beards really helped you out.

November through March. While everyone is walking around with cold faces, we have nature’s heaters built right in. Most people tend to think that beards are hot in the summer and cold in the winter. In reality though, they breathe well in the heat (also protecting our little cheeks from too much Vitamin D), and they insulate well in the winter. All in all, we have to thank our beards for neutralizing the brutal temperature fluctuations being dealt to the faces all over.

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Will there ever be a cleanly-shaven path in either of your futures?

We’ve always said we would shave our beards for charity (that is if we could grow them right back). Some beards aren’t meant to be forever, but they tend to grow on you. If we had to shave them off for a greater cause, it would really be our pleasure. We will say though, it probably wouldn’t be too long before our face fur made its return.