It’s time of year again… Wimbledon is back! Two weeks of glorious tennis and stuffing our faces with strawberries and cream. You can, of course, eat strawberries with cream at any time of the year, but there’s something special about combining the two during Wimbledon — it’s a British institution (a bit like Mo Bros, right?). As proven by the fact that 28,000kg of strawberries and 7,000 litres of cream consumed during the fortnight.
According to science, the correct strawberry-to-cream ratio is one tablespoon of single cream per two medium-sized strawberries, and they should be eaten in under two minutes and 50 seconds for optimum taste.
But enough of us getting all Masterchef on you. We’re not here to tell you how to serve your fruit, our concern is the risk that eating strawberries and cream can pose to your beard. Eating cream is a messy affair. And not just when it’s on the end of a strawberry: ice cream, whipped cream, sour cream, cream cheese — they’re all tricky for bearded gents.
Now, this might seem like a ridiculous idea for a blog post but trust us… If cream can find its way into a beard, it will — and you might never know about it.
Unless a good samaritan alerts you to the issue, there’s every chance that you could go all day with cream stuck in your beard. Not a good look, especially on that fine beard of yours. And if it dries… Oh, if it dries, you’ve got a real situation on your hands.
Eat cream by all means. Eat as much of it as you very well like, but before you do follow these tips to ensure it doesn’t dribble into your beard and stay there.
Have your beard comb at the ready
First things first, get the hair away from your mouth. If you have a long ‘tache, take your beard comb and brush your moustache hair out from the centre to create a part. Work around your mouth to make sure there are no stray hairs pointing in the direction of your cake (or strawberries and cream) hole.
If you already know that strawberries and cream are on the cards before you leave the house, work a little Mo Bro’s moustache wax into the facial hair to keep hairs out of the cream danger zone.
Trying to cram a plump, cream-covered strawberry into a partially open mouth is asking for trouble. You’ll smudge cream all over your beard if you do it like that. If you’re doing a strawberry in one, open your mouth wide as you possibly can, as if you were at the dentist, and post that fruit without it touching the sides (we’ll let you be the judge of whether a strawberry is a one-biter).
Can I have a knife and fork with that, please?
Typically, you’ll pick up a strawberry by the stem, dip it into the cream and take a bite — it’s all done with the fingers. When you’re sporting a fine mane out in public, however, this method isn’t ideal, especially if the strawberry can’t be devoured in one, as per the ‘open wide’ method above. So, ask for a knife and fork or better still carry your own foldable cutlery and cut the strawberries up into manageable, mess-free pieces.
Waffle is optional.
A beard’s best friend
When you’re eating cream in public your beard’s best friend is the humble napkin. Grab a decent handful when you order your strawberries and use them generously.
Take a bite, have a wipe. Strawberry goes in, napkin swiftly follows to clean up any debris. Bite. Wipe. Make it a habit.
If you’ve followed these tips you should enjoy a mess-free eating experience, but leave nothing to chance. Get to a bathroom and soon as possible and comb your beard through, maybe even apply a bit of wax and oil (if you have it handy) just to make sure your beard looks as pristine as it did pre-strawberries.
If worst comes to worst
If the absolute worst happens and dry cream gets all up in your mane, don’t pick at it. You might damage or pull out hairs if you do. The horrible smell won’t kick in right away so you’ve time to get home and clean it. Wash your beard with beard wash and comb out the dried cream. Once your beard is cream-free, apply some conditioner and towel dry to restore it to its former glory.
It’s cool to have more people pay attention to your beard than the action on the court, but only if the reason they’re staring is its hypnotic beauty, not because you have cream-filled whiskers. Comb your moustache and beard, work out which strawberries need to be cut into manageable chunks, and wipe after every bite and you’ll be able to enjoy strawberries and cream as much as the tennis.
Oh and... maybe we should try do a blog on trying to take on this bad boy!