Last month (Dec. 2017) Huffpost updated an earlier piece they wrote called: Google Trends Proves That Beards Aren’t Dead (Or Even Dying). The article itself is worth a read, but the bottom line is that beards (as a fashion style) aren’t going away anytime soon.
That said, we already know that cats rule the internet, but we wanted to see for ourselves the relationship in Google Trends between cats and beards. Our own analysis shows that there is indeed a strong correlation in online search traffic for the terms ‘beards’ and ‘cats’. So it looks like this trend too is not going away anytime soon! Here’s to cats and beards and to expect more of this cheeky phrase from proud beard owners … “Excuse me! My eyes are up here.”
On that note it only seemed fitting for us to do a post on beards and cats, and to share a few of our favorite feline meets facial hair photos. For help, we reached out to Tamas Kovacs (a freelance logo and graphic designer) who owns @beardsandcats_official for some insight and background as the resident cat and beard expert. Although his IG feed was only launched a year ago, it already has nearly 22K followers (at the time of this writing).
The original idea came to Tamas back in 2013 when he started his Beards and Cats Facebook page with the goal of introducing bearded guys and their feline partners in a fun and friendly fashion. In the photo below (left) is Tamas and his lovely cat Evetke (meaning squirrel in Hungarian), and on the right is a collage of the top 9 most viewed photos from 2017 on @beardsandcats_official.
We had some questions for Tamas about his popular feed, and here’s what he shared with us…
Q: What was the inspiration behind starting it? (in other words – why cats and beards?)
Well, everybody (that counts) loves cats. I do too. I realized that many of my male friends prefer cats to dogs. At that time the Internet was already loaded with handsome guys holding cute kittens tenderly, thus guys and cats were already ‘a thing’. After looking at the pictures I thought ‘Hey, what’s with all these clean-shaven boys? Why are they over represented among men?’ – as I’m a proud beard wearer too (no offense to clean-shaven men). I remember very well, what came next: a regular internet search for bearded guys and cats kept showing only Tumblr results. And that’s it. I was unhappy, and eventually that gave me the idea to start my own page – first on Facebook, then on Instagram.
Q: Was at difficult at the beginning to find images of bearded guys with cats to post?
Yes, it was very difficult, I literally had to hunt down those images from the Internet. Beards had just become popular at the time, but photos of bearded men still were hard to find – you’d think 2013 wasn’t very long ago to be that difficult to find some beards. Hipsters were a much smaller market at the time. I was scrolling through beard blogs in hoping to find something related to my page.
Not long after, just when I thought I’d run out of content, I began to receive submissions from my first fans. And of course, I was very grateful, not just because without them I’d have run out of beard+cat pictures very quickly, but it was also my goal to show everyday people, with their real-life feline partners – not just models posing with cats in an artificial environment.
Photos via: @julendqr
Q: Now with over 21K followers do your photos mostly come from Instagrammers sending you their photos?
It turned out that Beards and cats is indeed ‘a thing’, because the fan base has grown from dozens of followers to hundreds and within 4 years, thousands. In the meantime I even had to say goodbye to some unpublished pictures collected from the Internet, because I preferred to focus on the submissions I received. And when I started @beardsandcats_official on Instagram, the whole thing has become automatic. I started to publish the most popular Facebook posts to the Instagram page, and as I thought they would, people have responded very positively. The Instagram page has grown a lot bigger (in a couple of months) than the Facebook page has in 5 years.
And now I receive more submissions than I could simply publish: more than a dozen submissions each day. I had a real headache to find a solution to show them all, like I did before when it was managable with the average daily 2-4 pictures. But I found the way. I publish 8 to 16 pictures per day now to the Instagram Stories. They are only shown for 24 hours, and the audience get to decide (through voting) which submission gets to the next level: the Facebook page. If Facebook fans approve the post, the submission eventually makes it to the Instagram feed, which is now a very valuable platform to get “Instagram exposure”.
We mentioned earlier that Tamas is a graphic designer and go figure, his favorite subject is cats. His talent is very well applied in his online shop called The Beards and Cats Store where he sells shirts, mugs, tote bags, pillows and much more. To date his most popular design is called ‘Cat Daddy’.
And speaking of cat daddies, we tried to narrow down the playing field to a favorite photo but that’s always a tough and subjective call. However, we did agree with Tamas that one of our top picks would certainly come from @sarperduman (photo below).
Sarper Duman is a pianist from Istanbul Turkey who rescues injured street cats and gives them a home. These cats become his most loyal audience and closest family. To read more about Sarper and his feline friends please check out this paw-some post from LoveMeow.
If you haven’t seen any of his videos, we wanted to share one of our favs with you here…enjoy!
Seeing this adorable kitty tickling the ivories makes us want to write a post about cats and musicians…hmmmmm…stay tuned. In the meantime, we wanted to share a bit more eye candy of a few more furry felines and their fuzzy male companions.
Attention Cat and Beard Lovers...you'll want to share this!Click To Tweet
In closing we asked Tamas if he had a message to share with his many beard and cat loving fans. Here’s what he said – “Keep submitting your (men’s) beards and cats and enjoy the furrr!” We couldn’t have said it better. Be sure to check out @beardsandcats_official for daily updates and don’t forget to submit your favorite cat and beard photos.
Fun Fact: We read a recent statistic (unverified) that bearded men stroke their faces on average, 700 times a day! We can’t imagine any cat wanting that much attention. >^..^<