The true star of Tom Cruise vehicle Mission: Impossible: Fallout may rank below new cast member Henry Cavill on the cast list but sits above his top lip in the actual film. Yes, for the sequel – in which he curbs his Superman spandex for a villainous role as a CIA Agent tasked with eliminating Ethan Hunt – Cavill rocks the most impressive of mustaches.
“I really enjoyed having it – it was perfect for this character,” Cavill says sitting down with FashionBeans ahead of the film’s release. He’s not wrong. Its presence in the film injects the British star with a flash of old-school Hollywood merged with hard-ass SAS helping breathe life into a character you would not want to cross in a dark alley — think 40s Gregory Peck after a few months training with the Special Forces.
Cavill was required to keep the mustache for far longer than he expected due to production delays caused by Cruise’s well-documented ankle smash – something, he tells us, that wasn’t easy.
“As much as I enjoyed having it, I wasn’t expecting to keep it for a year; I thought it was only going to be for six months. By the time it came to the end of the movie, I was glad to shave it off.”
So, how did he maintain it? Rather humbly, he takes no credit for successfully reforming the most maligned of facial hairstyles. “Hair and makeup sorted it mostly,” he admits. “I let them focus on it because if I’d tried to do it, it would have been messed it up. I’d have ended up cutting it too short and it would have looked stupid.”
Why It Works
Growing a mustache and keeping it for longer than a single Movember campaign is a bristly business. For Cavill, who’s played DC superhero alter ego Clark Kent across three films, it helps that he has the cliff-face bone structure that the style looks best on. Not everyone can pull one-off, but Cavill is a rock-solid, granite-jawed exception.
Another key attribute which stands him out is the way he shunned the clean shaven look in favor of accompanying designer stubble – the so-called beardstache. That makes the mustache look modern rather than calling to mind images of 1980s sports pundits.
The rugged look is backed up by the tache’s simplicity. Rather than being long or bushy like a throwback Tom Selleck, it sits tidily on his face and blends into his look, naturally aided by his darker complexion. It looks like a masculine, half-forgotten approach to grooming, even if the truth is that it requires as much maintenance as most beard styles.
How To Get A Henry Cavill Moustache
First the good news: you don’t have to be Superman to nail the look; there are a variety of face shapes which complement a mustache should you wish to grow one. For further inspiration, look no further than Jude Law, Zac Efron and Milo Ventimiglia. Then there are those who rock stronger growth in their upper lip area than the rest of the face and have retooled this as an advantage (see: Robert Downey Jr and Colin Farrell).
With this in mind, a mustache is likely out of the question if your hair grows faint and patchy. But for those who struggle on the beard-front, it can be a perfect alternative not to mention a great sartorial decision. Convinced you’d like to grow one yourself? Below are all the tips you need courtesy of Murdock’s Dan Glass and Russell Brittle from Pall Mall Barbers.
If you’re growing one, grow one – hide the scissors and don’t trim until you see a full mustache smiling back at you from the mirror. The same goes for shaving in the areas surrounding the upper lip – keep the hair growing for six to eight weeks otherwise instead of looking like you‘re growing a mustache, it’ll simply look like you forgot to take the trimmer above your lip mid-shave.
2. Seek Help
After six to eight weeks, throw it over to the professionals. Consult with your local barber about what look you’re going for (take in a snap of Cavill for reference). Their mission, should they choose to accept it, is to tell you whether it’s an achievable goal or potentially what could better suit your sense of style.
In the interim, invest in a fine-toothed comb and keep the mustache looking tidy. Use it daily and give the hair a midway parting to ensure it comes out from under your nose. Brush diagonally across the lip, not straight down – you don’t want any stray hairs dangling over your top lip.
4. Mow Your Mowser
After your consultation with a professional, buy a quality beard trimmer with adjustable trimming lengths and a detailed head that lets you work under your nose. Remember, to get Cavill’s mustache, you need to maintain stubble elsewhere on your face and keep the mustache longer – trim it by half an inch to an inch (grade three or four) and get right underneath your nostrils to maximize tidiness. Keep it as close to the top lip as you can manage: you don’t want any skin showing.
5. Wax On
Something that will come in handy when you’re styling is a quality mustache wax. This will lubricate the hair and skin beneath it as well as keeping the mustache itself looking neat.
Mission: Impossible – Fallout is released in cinemas on 26 July