Halloween Beard Question: How Come Zombies Don't Have Beards?

The world is a place filled with mysteries. Unusual things that give us pause, that make us think. Some of these questions are very deep and intellectual. Some are the kind that hit you at 3:00 a.m. after a quick trip to the fridge and won't let you fall back asleep. Nonetheless, the question is there, and now an answer must be found. Were unicorns real? What's really going on in the Bermuda Triangle? Who or what is making crop circles? Why don't zombies have beards?


Hey, yeah.

Zombies are a super popular subject these days. There are tons of movies and television shows about them. However, when you think about it (and maybe hit Netflix and watch a few episodes of The Walking Dead just to double-check) there are never any zombies sporting a beard. What's up with that? How is that even possible? These shows are supposed to be believable, right? Like what if a zombie apocalypse really does happen, what would you do to survive? Ans the zombies are generally horrifically gross and ghoulish. So how can they not have facial hair? This one bears some considering.

There's a simple explanation.

A popular misconception is that the body continues to grow hair and nails after death. This has been witnessed in numerous cases over the centuries when a body has been exhumed for one reason or another and the corpse is revealed to have longer hair than when it was buried as well as longer fingernails and toenails. In centuries past this was considered in many parts of the world to be an indication of vampirism. It was believed that the deceased was creeping around at night, noshing on people, drinking their blood, and that "nutrition" was causing the hair and nails to continue to grow.

What was happening to these corpses was that as they began to decompose, and their skin became dry and dehydrated, it would shrink and draw back from the hair follicles and the nail bed, causing more of the hair and nails to be exposed and giving both the appearance of having to continue to grow after the individual's death.

Now, when discussing zombies and their lack of facial hair, what would have happened is that when the zombies arise from their graves, the decomposition process is in full swing and the hair on the face is no longer rooted securely in the hair follicle. Therefore, it has come out and of course cannot grow back ever again. This is also part of the reason that zombies so often have thinning hair. The follicles cease to function following death. They also shrink away from the roots of the hair that is being held in the facial area. When the follicle has become weak enough, the beard hair can literally be pulled out by the handfuls. Hence, no beards.

Despite the desire of so many people to have some of these mysteries solved and have the answers be some supernatural, other-worldly revelations, in most instances there is a perfectly logical scientific explanation for these things.

But the explanations offered are not the only ones out there. Everyone knows zombies are an entirely different breed. So, who's to say being beardless isn't some piece of evolution that is happening? Maybe one day in the future we will ALL be among the legions of the hairless walking dead!

 
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