Moustaches, Men and Movember: Are Will Still Talking About Key Issues?

Are Will Still Talking About Key Issues?


The word “Movember” is derived from the month of November and the word “moustache.” Movember is an annual charity type contest event that encourages the growing of moustaches during the month of November to raise awareness of men's health issues, such as prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and men's mental health issues such as depression.

I was interested to read a 2013 study which examined 12,666 Twitter feeds to get a better sense of what people are talking about on social media during Movember. Are people talking about cancer and men’s health issues or are people talking about moustaches and selling products geared to facial hair?

To study the issue, tweets were chosen among people in Canada, United States and the UK. There were 4,222 tweets chosen in each country. 
Interestingly, only 0.7 % of 12,666 new tweets provided specific health-related information that would lead to awareness and understanding of men's health issues like cancer and depression.

If Movember tweets are not about the main issues, what are people tweeting about? According to the study, moustache growing and grooming was the most popular topic in U.S. tweets, and conversations about community engagement were most common in Canadian and U.K. tweets. Tweets from the US were often geared towards marketing products and significantly more tweets were geared to market products in the United States than Canada or the United Kingdom ( p < .05). Overall, the authors of this study felt that the findings from this study suggested that Movember campaigns are not generating as much conversation online about men’s health issues as originally intended. More work is needed to understand how best to make Movember a success in the online world.


Bravo et al. Social Media and Men's Health: A Content Analysis of Twitter Conversations During the 2013 Movember Campaigns in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Am J Mens Health. 2017.

Dr. Jeff Donovan is a Canadian and US board certified dermatologist specializing exclusively in hair loss. To schedule a consultation, please call the Whistler office at 604.283.1887

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