Article Thumbnail

In Defense of Timothée Chalamet’s Dirt ’Stache

The internet did not react well to the ‘Little Women’ heartthrob, 24, looking like a 15-year-old going through puberty

Hollywood’s leading prince Timothée Chalamet sauntered onto the 2020 National Board of Review Awards red carpet last week in a chic white suit over a T-shirt (which, frankly, should’ve been tucked in). He looked like his typical Lower East Side–cool self — except for one update.

Timmy is “growing” a “beard.”

Really, it’s a pube ’stache, and the internet did not react well to the Little Women heartthrob, 24, looking like a 15-year-old going through puberty.

“It does give off a slight greasiness to his look,” says Abdul Abubakar, 24. “Like he’s a dodgy waiter who’ll slip his number onto your date’s napkin with a wink.”

Timmy stans responded by defending their king — just like they did with his bowl cut. “We support because it makes him look mature and sophisticated,” Giovanni Loera, 15, says. “He gives me, like, a more formal vibe with the ’stache, and not many can pull it off.”

Loera is wise for his years. Celebrities like Michael Cera and Paul Dano — twink icons of yesteryear — look a little too sleazy with their tiny ’staches.

The ’stache also brings back bad middle school memories — a time when Axe body spray, acne outbreaks and shitty ’staches are an unfortunate right of passage for boys.

“I’ve never loved the dirt ’stache look on anyone,” Nicole Russell, 28, says. “Johnny Depp was the only person who could really make that work for him.”

Personally, I say the Chalamet critics are hair-elitist (hair-litist?). Not everyone can rock a full, dense beard, and it is still noble to try. (If that describes you, btw, check out Beard Board.)

Chalamet is often heralded for nontraditionally masculine sartorial choices, like colorful suits and heeled boots. To me, his tiny mustache fits with his vibe. Some might call it subversive — even validating. “Right now, I’m encountering what it’s like to grow facial hair for the first time. I’ve been doing hormone replacement therapy for a little over six months now, and it feels like some pop culture kismet that Timothée Chalamet has unveiled his new facial hair,” J.E. Reich, a trans, nonbinary, queer writer and journalist, tells MEL.

Does Chalamet look better with a clean-shaven face? Yes, undeniably. But Timmy hardly looks bad with his tiny mustache. And if we accept him at his best, then we have to stay beside him at his worst. Any true style king takes risks — even if they don’t always work out. As Reich says, “Everyone is entitled to a rat ’stache at least one in their life, right?”