The student newspaper of Clark University

The Scarlet

The student newspaper of Clark University

The Scarlet

The student newspaper of Clark University

The Scarlet

Top 5 Mustaches of the NHL

The hockey season is back and with it is the return of the ‘stache! These are the current top 5 best mustaches in the NHL as we look forward to the season.
Image by Morgan Martin

Hockey is finally back! The NHL preseason is officially underway but skates are not the only thing making their return to the ice. The NHL has a long and often unfortunate history of mustaches. Thus with the return of the hockey season comes the infamous return of hockey player mustaches hitting the ice. I did the tedious work of previewing each and every one of the 2023 NHL rosters in order to provide the most accurate top 5 list of the mustaches within the NHL (rankings are based off of the most recent photos presented on the ESPN website as of September 2023). 

Before diving into the ranking of NHL mustaches, I find it is important to provide a brief explanation of why mustaches are so prevalent within the league. While some players are committed to their ‘staches year round, most NHL mustaches tend to arrive within the month of November. The NHL are large contributors to the Movember movement. The Movember movement calls for individuals to grow a mustache- or as the Movember movement calls it “moustache”- during the month of November in support of men’s health. The movement’s website states, “growing a Moustache is like wearing a symbol representing healthier men and a healthier world, all Movember long. It shows everyone you walk past that men’s health matters to you”. While facial hair has always been a prominent staple within the NHL, Movember allows the players to participate in a movement that not only highlights their ‘staches but contributes to a larger cause supporting men’s health. 

So while the rankings I provide are focused on the most up to date roster images provided on the ESPN website currently, be on the lookout in November (Movember) for even more rocking ‘staches. 

The Top 5 Mustaches In The NHL

With any serious ranking, there are criteria that need to be upheld. For this ranking, there were three main aspects of a perfect ‘stache that I was looking for. First, the thickness of the mustache. There were many weak mustaches in the rosters this year, so when I was searching for the best mustaches, I needed to find the ones that proved the player could really grow a ‘stache. The second criteria is whether or not the mustache fits the face-shape of the beholder. For reference, the Cremo Company created a guide to help individuals decide which mustache is the perfect match for their face shape. Face proportions and expressions highly impact whether or not a mustache is the one for you, and I’ll be honest- many mustaches did not hit the mark when it came to this criteria. Learn your face, NHL! The third and final criteria I considered when judging was the iconicness of the ‘stache. Iconicness was a little bit harder to judge, and a bit more personal and flexible. Iconicness in these terms specifically refers to how much news coverage a mustache gets, and how much shock I would be in if I were to have to look at the player without a mustache.

With criteria covered, let’s get into the rankings. 

5: Auston Matthews, Toronto Maple Leafs

While Matthews does not have the strongest mustache in the NHL, he without a doubt has the most popular ‘stache in the league. Constantly receiving news coverage, Matthews holds the most points for “iconicness” of his moustache. Seeing him without his mustache is definitely a shocking experience. Matthews often rocks a pencil style ‘stache, occasionally he is seen with a parted pencil style. This style compliments Matthews face quite well, however one could argue that a handlebar style might take his look to the next level. Matthews loses points in regard to thickness. While Matthews can grow a mustache, there are simply other NHL players who can really grow a mustache. Thus Matthews maintains his slot at number 5 in the rankings. 

4: Alex Nedeljkovic, Pittsburgh Penguins

Backup goaltender Nedeljkovic can be seen displaying a fresh painter’s brush in his roster photo. Nedeljkovic is looking forward to playing for the Penguins this year, and hopefully he plans to do so while continuing to rock this look throughout the season. The style fits Nedeljkovic’s face well, and has a good amount of thickness to it. The ‘stache sits naturally and comfortably on Nedeljkovi’s face, which is nice to see in the midst of forced and off-putting mustaches within many rosters this year. The mustache lacks iconicness, thus placing it lower in the rankings. However, now that I have seen this man with a mustache, I cannot imagine his face any other way. Keep up the good work Nedeljkovic. 

3: Charlie Lindgren, Washington Capitals

Goaltenders seem to be excelling in the mustache game, as number three in the rankings is denoted to the second goaltender in the ranking. Charlie Lindgren presents a horseshoe ‘stache in his 2023 roster photo. Lingdgren’s mustache receives points for thickness and iconicness. Receiving several news-style articles about the mustache, one can argue that the ‘stache is one of the reasons Lindgren has become a household name within the past year. Lindgren rocks his stache with confidence and swagger, making his look one of the most iconic in the league. The only thing I feel could make Lindgren’s horseshoe better is if it were longer. A true horseshoe mustache proceeds down the face toward the chin, and Lindgren nearly hits the mark but falls short right before his chin. Nonetheless, the style suits his face well and definitely proves he can grow a stache and can do it well

2: Jake Middleton, Minnesota Wild

Middleton is one of the best defensemen that the Wild currently have. The Minnesota defender is dedicated to his sport, and seemingly dedicated to his facial hair as well. Middleton’s mustache is definitely well known, with many even attempting to name it in the media. Middleton’s mustache is a thick walrus styled lump of hair above his lip. While one could argue that different styles may be more appealing to Middleton’s face, I believe that the ‘stache suits his face extremely well. It would be interesting to see Middleton rock other styles though, such as a horseshoe or hungarian style. Competition for the number one mustache was definitely close, as Middleton’s mustache is truly a star contender. 

1: Stuart Skinner, Edmonton Oilers

Goaltender Stuart Skinner has the best mustache in the NHL. While competition was tight between the first and second slots in this ranking, Skinner one hundred percent is taking home the Mustache Cup. Rocking a heavy chevron style stache, Skinner makes sure his presence is known when he enters a room (or rink). Fans have even made social media accounts for Skinner’s face sweater (@Skinners_Stache on Twitter). Skinner’s mustache is iconic, thick, and the perfect style for his face shape. Despite the Oilers being unable to make it past the second round of the postseason last year, they should be prideful in the fact that their goaltender has the best mustache in the league. At least they have that win under their belt. Goaltender staches for the win! 

Honorable Mentions!

There are two NHL players that deserve to be highlighted for their facial hair craftsmanship that were not included in the top 5 ranking. These players are Michael Pezzetta from the Montreal Canadiens and Kyle Burroughs from the San Jose Sharks. While these mustaches are not the best in the league, they both have prominent characteristics that deserve a shout-out. Pezzetta is seen styling a parted-pencil look most frequently. While it lacks the thickness needed to give it a place in the official ranking, the ‘stache shape and style suits Pezzetta’s face very well. I look forward to seeing the future of this mustache. Burroughs fashions a chevron styled mustache. The mustache is thick, proving he has the ability to grow a decent ‘stache. I believe that Burroughs has the possibility to make his look exceedingly more iconic if he were to switch to a handlebar-type styling when it came to his upper lip facial hair. Doing so may result in a higher placement on the ranking in the future. 

Players That Would Benefit From A Mustache

There were three non-mustached faces that stood out to me as I was navigating the NHL rosters. While these players are currently unmustached, I feel as though they would fashion a mustache extremely well. The first being Jack Hughes from the New Jersey Devils. Hughes is widely known across the NHL fanbase, whether it be for his skill on the ice (as he is arguably a top-ten player in the league) or for the recent trend in tiktok edits of him. I believe that Hughes could make himself stand out even more if he were to start growing out a nice painter’s brush ‘stache. The style would match his face well and allow himself to fully be established as a true competitor in the NHL. 

The second player I believe would benefit from a mustache is Ronnie Attard from the Philadelphia Flyers. Attard is a talented and young defenceman. Starting his second year with the flyers, there is nothing that shouts “I belong here” like a strong and prominent mustache. The style I believe would most fit Attard is the chevron. I believe Attard has the potential to grow and flaunt a mustache like the chevron, and it would help him make a name for himself in the NHL outside of his skill on the ice. 

The third and final unmustached player I believe would benefit from a face caterpillar is Jake DeBrusk from the Boston Bruins. DeBrusk is a well known name in the league for his inarguable skill on the ice. DeBrusk has been a Bruin for six years, which makes him one of the longest tenured players currently on the team. He is entering the second year of his two-year deal contract, which has not yet been extended. Perhaps if DeBrusk were to grow a fine lampshade stache, his chances of contract extension would increase. I believe DeBrusk’s confidence would heighten if he were to begin parading around in a moustache such as this, likely further excelling his skill on the ice; proving his worthiness as a Bruin. 

As pucks begin dropping on the ice this year I am certain we will see a rise in mustache growth within the NHL, especially as Movember approaches. Whether you are looking forward to the rise of mustaches or living in fear of the possible facial hair atrocities, there is one thing we can certainly all agree on: hockey is back baby!

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

Comment approval is subject to the discretion of the Scarlet editorial board.
All The Scarlet Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *