Rajasthani Men and their Moustaches

You may not believe this: While at Rajasthan I was searching for faces with long well groomed moustaches. Men of Rajasthan are famous for them. I have heard and seen pictures of men who are paid to flaunt their moustaches, which go well with the Rajputana spirit that symbolizes the valor and glory of Rajasthan. They maintain their moustaches. It is a daily practice for them to massage with mustard oil everyday and then press it in to shape by tying a cloth around the face.

At Mehrangarh Fort of Jodhpur we saw this gentle man with slightly long but well maintained white beard and grey moustache. It was obvious he was paid to sit there.

Then when I was touring the villages, I saw this caretaker of one of the wild life divisions at Jodhpur. Initially I was focusing on the wildlife around and as I was slowly turning with my camera to focus on a flying bird, this gentleman came in the range of my lens and I clicked. Do you think he was aware of my focusing on him?

At Udaipur Palace I chanced to see yet another gentleman with well groomed moustache. He was definitely not paid to sit posing with his moustache. He seemed to an important official there. I was hesitant to focus on him. What if he feels offended? Then on an impulse I decided to get rid of my inhibitions. I walked up to him and requested him to pose for me. To my surprise he very willingly posed.

I thanked him, he just smiled back with his palms folded in Namaste. It was overwhelming!

The world may see this as yet another ornamental display, but for these men it is their pride.

Dhurries of Rajasthan
Lodurva, Amar Sagar Jain Temple at Jaisalmer

40 Responses to “Rajasthani Men and their Moustaches

  • Hi Indrani! With a 48h day I would have time to enjoy your blog more often; shame on the time controller… ;))
    Great pictures, amazing moustaches… 😉
    I’m so envious seeing your Jaiselmer pictures… One day I’ll get there also… ;))
    Meanwhile Blogtrotter will be departing Tunisia 2007 soon, but managed to keep the delay in posting on twelve (12) months only. Great achievement… ;)) Enjoy and have a great weekend!

  • Very cool post! No doubt you charmed them as much as they charmed you.

  • Very cool! I just love coming to your blog, it’s so very interesting to me!

  • I didn’t know of this tradition there, but I think it’s terrific. And it’s is perfect for the menfolk – kind of in the same vein as peacocks’ tails and fabulous antlers. Men are supposed to do grand things like this to impress the ladies. Bravo Rasjasthan!

  • it must be very difficult to maintain a mustache that big, but i guess it’s worth it! the last pic is cool

  • What a fascinating story (and the photos)!
    Thank you for sharing this.

  • Mirror, mirror on the wall…
    Work of Art – fabulous!

  • wow u sure got them twirling their mustaches!

  • I wonder how they eat though?

  • Brilliant photography as usual!
    Loved the curly moustaches.

  • That’s great camera work, Indrani. Thanks for the lovely comments on my blog today.

  • Good collection. Every set of moustache is different from the rest.

  • This is slightly different.. Tee hee..!!

  • These are superb captures. Really interesting information as well. Suddenly i feel a need to go and visit these men with their well groomed moustaches. (and they say women are vain!) huh.

  • Hahaha, the moustache are so cute, they could curl. Thanks for dropping by my blog.

  • Congratulations for being selected No. 1 in David’s Post of the Day. Very nice photography. Thanks also for the enlightening explanation of the moustache’s significance in this culture. Pappy

  • Thank you so much for that valuable history lesson. I’ve seen pictures of these gentlemen before but none quite so involving…I felt “there”…standing beside you admiring them at a distance.
    Congratulations on Post of the Day!

  • I was so surprised and pleased that you stopped by my blog! I followed you to yours and it is amazing. Such beautiful photos and the history is amazing. I have a friend at work, Raju, who was born there. He talks about India, but never like you do!

    I have seen men here that have moustaches like that and always wondered how they got them to grow like that. Now I know!

  • Indrani,

    No doubt in David’s choosing for top post of the day. What an interesting concept. It is such an educational post. How nice would it be for teachers to pick up on post like this and use them for education?

    Also, thank you for visiting my blog and leaving the kind words. I look forward to returning to explore your blog further in the near future.


  • Visiting from PhotoStory Friday!

    What an interesting post! I loved the photos and the designs in the mustaches! They have a lot to be proud of! Thanks for broadening my horizons today!

  • It really is interesting seeing well-maintained mustache! Congrats on being David’s post of the day!

  • I think I could live with one of those mustaches – not on me – on my hubs. They are well maintained indeed! 🙂

  • That photo is definitely the best Rajasthani moustache on the internet!

  • Lovely staches – I am struck by the narrative, it really is good to ask, it becomes an entirely different thing when the person blesses one, in effect, with the gift of their countenance or wares, rather than one absconding with it…

  • That last fellow’s mustache is most certainly a work of art. Very nice shot.

    (Came here via David McMahon, by the way. Congratulations on being named Post Of The Day!)

  • Hello there. Congratulations on being David’s Post of the Day. It is richly deserved – this is a subject I’ve never even thought about it and it’s always good to see things for the first time.

    Well done

  • It must be a nightmare maintaining them. Or, for them, it may come naturally… Good pix. Coincidentally I posted one on beard…

  • Wow! I cant even grow one. Very interesting post
    An Arkie’s Musings

  • Pride and devotion are the 2 words that come to mind. Is it also like a stature symbol?? Sorry if it seems like an odd question..I’m just so impressed with all you write and photograph!

  • Found your blog today. Interesting moustaches! Your Jaisalmer pictures are amazing, and your murals from an earlier post are lovely too.

  • Hi Indrani,

    Well, pictures say a lot. 🙂
    I feel maintaining them would be a matter of pain & pride. 🙂

    I have linked this post to Blogbharti, will appear tomorrow morning.

    Keep posting.

  • This time you gave us something different….Rajasthani men are famous for their moustaches all over the world…..

  • Hey i gave you an award on my site..


    No need to continue the chain, but i had to give the same nevertheless to the blogs i like and i like yours a lot…

  • Thank you for this interesting post on ‘staches!

  • You’ve made my M quiver at their tips in delight..!!!!

    Thank you for highlighting this brave matter in men. And Congrats for all the awards received..!!

  • What an awesome story – and what great mustaches! Believe it or not, my PSF is also about mustaches this week. Stop by if you can! 🙂

  • lovely observation and some amazing men..Im sure they would have told you some heroic stories as well

  • moustaches r not common in my part of the world. maybe our people are not so hairy 🙂

  • Wow hats off to you for creating such an engaging community here!!

    This is the first time (I think) I am seeing your blog. Love the cultural posts. India has so many interesting cultures and tidbits …too many to learn in a single lifetime!!

  • Makes my offering rather scruffy.

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