Beard hair may not exist simply to proclaim your hipster status — it may actually offer some protection from being punched in the face (something we assume hipsters are concerned about).
A study published in Integrative Organismal Biology finds that yes, a thick beard could protect you if you’re punched in the throat.
[H]aving a full beard may help protect vulnerable regions of the facial skeleton from damaging strikes, such as the jaw. Presumably, full beards also reduce injury, laceration and contusion, to the skin and muscle of the face.
The tests were done using sheep’s wool and a purpose-build machine, rather than the traditional grad student subjects.