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The mission to turn beards into something far greater

by Virgin Active on Friday 12 October 2018
Image source: Beard Season

Beards... They seem to be sprouting up everywhere these days.  Yet, if you think back eight years ago they were only really being sported by bikies, bushmen and geography teachers - oh and let's not forget the founder of Virgin...  

But, who do we thank for this furry resurgence? Well... Jimmy Niggles and the team from Beard Season are somewhat responsible.  

Beard Season is a non-profit charity on a mission to get as many people as they can to have a skin check at least once a year.  It all started after a bloke called Wes Bonny died from melanoma in 2010. He was only 26. 

This completely devastated Jimmy and his friends, so at his wake they cooked up an idea to grow their beards for winter, get a skin check and then use their beards as life saving conversation starters, encouraging as many people as they can to get a skin check with their GP or dermatologist.  

Image source: Beard Season

Every winter since, the movement has grown (ahem) considerably. They now have ambassadors all around the world, and save on average a life a week! Jimmy Niggles decided to keep his beard since their first 'Beard Season' - and will only shave it when they raise a million dollars towards a free national skin check program. Something he's very keen to do before the end of the year. So much so, that he's jumping into the charity full time and keen to do whatever it takes to make his beard more valuable and get his story in front of the right people. 

To keep up, Jimmy needs to get in 'million dollar shape', and is a regular at our Barangaroo, Sydney CBD and Moore Park gyms. He's even been spotted giving beard growing tips to our trainers and other members, followed closely with his trademark question - "when did you last have a skin check?" 

We love his message and the Beard Season mission, and encourage you all to get a skin check too. Melanoma is one of the world's deadliest cancers, which is pretty scary for a place like Australia where people worship the great outdoors. But it's also one of the most successful to treat if it's detected early. So visit your GP, skin specialist or dermatologist and encourage your friends to do the same. It could well save your life.  

Share your experience with the hashtag #BeardSeasonSkincheck 

For more inspiration check out #BeardSeasonVictories 

Or, have a look at more of their work on instagram @BeardSeason 

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