Like red noses, Moustaches are a bit of a comedy item in the UK. It’s only really acceptable for men to sport them once a year for a charity event (Movember), under the pretence that they are raising awareness of the cause/fundraising (although in my experience a lot more effort goes into the growing of the moustache than either of these activities).
On coming to Bulgaria, a Brit could be forgiven for assuming that a Movember-esque campaign is going on. But unless Bulgarians celebrate both Mo-ay and Mo-une, I think it’s pretty safe to say that moustaches are not a comedy item here. In fact, they’re up there with the eyebrows in terms of popular facial accessories (not literally, of course… that would just look weird).
In an article on moustache-dense countries (admittedly somewhat lacking in any facts, statistics or general credibility), AskMen puts Bulgaria in the top ten. And it seems that this is not a new phenomenon either. If you google ‘moustache’, the first link that comes up is a Wikipedia article about moustaches. And the first photo on that page? Panayot Hitov, a Bulgarian revolutionary, who sported a moustache so large that it should have had its own postcode:
With inspiration like this to draw on, it’s no wonder that facial hair is so popular here…