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Prince Harry has caused a spike in more men doing THIS with their face

The royal's facial hair has inspired a new wave of beard growth

Sophie Hamilton

Prince Harry is becoming quite the style icon in the beauty world – all thanks to his beard! Yes, it seems the dashing royal's facial hair has inspired men worldwide to ditch their razors and grow their beards. And there's proof. Market research firm IRI has revealed a staggering 226% increase in sales of beard-care products in the last three years with the industry now worth nearly £5million. If you're wondering what 'beard-care products' actually are, then we can enlighten you: one can buy beard wash, beard conditioner, beard serum and even beard oil. Who knew?

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It's not surprising that Harry is setting trends; his fashion cred has sky-rocketed since he first stepped out with his now wife Duchess Meghan. Whatever Meghan wears, everyone copies – from her high heels to her designer dresses, nude lipstick and signature messy bun. It was only a matter of time before the Prince would set trends too.

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The history of Harry's beard is quite a tale. He first started growing a beard in 2013 when he completed a charity trek to the South Pole. The Prince kept his facial hair upon returning to the UK, and surprised royal watchers with his new look when he attended the Christmas Day church service at Sandringham.

MORE: VIDEO: Take a look back at 100 years of royal hairstyles

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The Percy Nobleman Beard Grooming Kit, available at Boots.com for £26.99

The Queen reportedly told him to shave it off, with an insider at the time saying: "The rest of the family liked it and were taking the mickey, especially his cousin Zara who dubbed him Prince Hairy. But the Queen soon let her displeasure be known. She doesn't mind royal men growing beards when they are away in the armed forces or out in the wilds like Harry was in the Antarctic, but she expects them to be clean-shaven when they get home."

MORE: Duchess Meghan pulls off a fascinator perfectly – here's how NOT to get 'hat hair'

The Prince shaved off his beard in the New Year, despite his then girlfriend Cressida Bonas reportedly liking the look. But after Harry left the army in June 2015, he went back to growing a beard and has had one ever since. The Queen gave Harry special permission to marry Meghan with a beard, as army rules normally require men to be clean-shaven in uniform on their wedding day.

And there you have it. Beards are officially cool, all thanks to Prince Harry.

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