Mental Health Awareness Week: Men more interested in appearance than mental health

Written by on 17th May 2018

British men are still much more interested in their physical appearance than their mental health, a new survey of more than two thousand males has revealed.

Research, carried out by Samaritans and male grooming brand, The Bluebeards Revenge found that 41 per cent of men still spend less than an hour a week looking after their mental wellbeing, compared with just 14 per cent who spend less than 60 minutes looking after their physical appearance.

The figures, which have been released for Mental Health Awareness Week (14-20 May), also revealed that 66 per cent of men allocate between 1 and 4 hours every week to their personal appearance, but only 44 per cent of guys dedicate the same amount of time to their mental health.

Reading (44per cent) is the most popular method of de-stressing, with walking a close second at 39 per cent and running third at 37 per cent. Playing sport (33 per cent), cycling (22 per cent), going to the gym (21 per cent), walking the dog (19 per cent), listening to music (19 per cent), socialising with friends (17 per cent) and yoga (16 per cent) were other tools men use to relax and escape the pressures of everyday life.

Samaritans have now joined forces with The Bluebeards Revenge to encourage more men to take a greater interest in looking after their mental health. The inside of the brand’s product carton includes life-saving information from The Lions Barber Collective and Samaritans, encouraging men to seek help if they feel under pressure.

Nick Gibbens, spokesperson for The Bluebeards Revenge, said:

Men are much less likely to seek support for mental health issues than women and this needs to change. Suicide is also the single biggest killer of men under the age of 50 in the UK and, in 2016, 76% of people who died by suicide in the UK were male.

Our research shows men are still much more interested in their physical appearance than their mental wellbeing, and we are in a unique position to change this and get more guys to open up and talk about their feelings.

Upon opening one of our product cartons, men are presented with the vital information they need to actively improve their mental health, allowing them to find the right support to help them improve their lives and fight stigma.

Samaritan’s Director of External Affairs, Paul McDonald, said:

Looking after your emotional wellbeing as well as your physical health is fundamental. Three times as many men kill themselves as women, so it is crucial that men find ways of looking after themselves emotionally, and get into the habit of looking after each other. It is as important as learning to read and write.

The survey of 2,124 men aged between 18 and 65 also revealed the pressures affecting men’s mental state the most. Financial worries (74 per cent) topped the list, with relationship problems (65 per cent) second, family concerns (64 per cent) third, work pressures (61 per cent) fourth and poor physical health (51 per cent) fifth. Twenty-nine per cent of recipients cited social media as a key factor for increased mental health pressures.

The Bluebeards Revenge has also recently announced the launch of a brand new hair gel in collaboration with men’s mental health charity The Lions Barber Collective. 50p from every tub sold will go to the charity to help prevent male suicide.



Anyone can contact Samaritans any time for free from any phone on 116 123. This number is free to call and will not show up on your phone bill. Or email or go to to find details of your local branch where you can talk to one of our trained volunteers face to face.

Samaritans is a charity and it’s the public’s kind donations and more than 20,000 trained volunteers that mean we are always there for anyone struggling to cope.  Your money or your time could save a life. Find out how you can support us:

The Bluebeards Revenge is a premium men’s grooming brand that provides traditional shaving, beard, hair and body products to barbers and men all over the world.

The Lions Barber Collective is an international group of top quality barbers that was founded in September 2015. The group helps to raise awareness and prevent male depression, suicide, and other mental illnesses. The Lions Barber Collective aims to create training that will enable barbers to recognise, talk, and listen out for symptoms of depression. They can safely signpost their clients when they are sat in the chair towards potential solutions.

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