The Cultivation of a Luxuriant Mustache

During my disco tag sale I went through my parents garage and found a book called “Patent Pending.” It was published in 1968 – but features patents much older than that like this one from 1891. I love old books, especially pamphlets, that have to do with marketing and design – the wording alone to a writer like me is worth every single page. Being an art and advertising nerd, I really like to share this stuff with my readers because you can never find it. I hope you dig it because there’s more to come – both in patents and in mustaches.

In case you can’t read the tiny lettering in the photo, I’ve transcribed it for you. The mustache trainer was patented on March 3, 1891 because its inventor felt that,

“The mustache has grown into favor of late years on account of its alleged benefit to the health of the wearer, and more particularly as a facial adornment.

One disagreeable feature pertains to the cultivations of a luxuriant mustache. It greatly interferes with the free partaking of liquid or semi-liquid refreshments, and is liable to become soiled and rendered unsightly when it is brought into contact with articles of food or drink.

The object of my invention is to provide a small, shapely, light and conveniently attachable device, designated a ‘mustache trainer,’ which when in position will retain the mustache away from contact with the mouth, thereby permitting the wearer to partake of soup and other articles of food without soiling his mustache.”

Indeed.

In my early days of Ladytiger I wrote a column called “Your Weekly Handsome Mustache.” It featured men with mustaches from various eras (mostly 70’s) and gave a little background about why I like them and their mustaches. I am going to resurrect that column soon – and would love to get photos of your mustaches sent in. Who knows, maybe we can build a world of luxuriant mustaches together.

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