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History and Evolution of the Mustache Guard


During the Victorian Era, a proper man took his appearance seriously.  The hallmark of a man held in the highest regard was a well-groomed mustache, a symbol of self-respect and confidence.  His challenge was to protect his perfectly styled moustache.   The moustache cup was invented in the mid-19th century by British potter Harvey Adams.  The mustache guard, secured to the inner brim of the cup, protected a gentleman’s mustache from the daily onslaught of hot or frothy drinks.


Patented in September 1890 by Ruben P. Hollinshead, this guard is an improvement upon other devices designed to "[suspend] a gentleman's mustache in order to keep the same up out of the way at the table, thus preventing the annoyance which so frequently is experienced in eating soups and other like foods, and drinking tea, coffee, or other liquids by gentlemen having heavy moustaches." It looks rather painful.

2. Patent USD381462, "Mustache Shield"

Inventor Dennis H. Bailey didn't do too much explaining in his application for this shield. Still, the patent was granted in 1997.

3. Patent US278999, "Mustache Holder"


This device, patented by J.A. Moore in 1883, was a comb that held a man's mustache back so it wouldn't come into contact with food.

4. Patent US213455, "Mustache Cup and Glass"

Unlike other mustache cups—which keep the mustache out of whatever a man is trying to drink—this one, patented by Albert Schenck in 1879, will make sure the guard that keeps a man's 'stache at bay won't also burn the lips, all thanks to the innovative spout.