There’s a few good reasons that Santa Claus is not an icon of youth culture, but chief among them would be his snowy white beard.
Unfortunately, there’s no scenario where a white beard makes you look younger. “In my experience, beards typically always make someone look older,” says Gregory Dylan of Gregory Dylan Skincare and Beauty. “Now, going from a full beard to, say, a goatee or scruff may make someone look younger. But a full beard certainly adds some age, as does a white or grey hair.”
Studies back Dylan up, indicating that beards themselves, whatever the color, make men appear older. Additionally, a hair transplant clinic in England held a survey that showed various male celebrities with and without beards; participants guessed those with beards as up to 10 years older than they actually were.
There’s no scenario, then, where white hair — being the most obvious physical indicator of increasing age other than wrinkles — can make someone look younger. Luckily, if your facial hair is edging towards the Santa end of the color spectrum, there are things you can do (besides dyeing your beard or shaving it off). Sure, the beard might show signs of age, but the face behind it doesn’t have to: A good skincare regimen that includes plenty of moisturizing can help hold off those wrinkles for another few years, so although your beard is white, the face remains youthful.
Hey… maybe you really are Santa after all?