How clean is clean-shaven? Study finds beardless healthcare workers carry more bacteria on their faces

A clean-shaven face may be deceptive, at least when it comes to the "clean" part, according to a Journal of Hospital Infection study that found healthcare workers with beards carried fewer harmful bacteria than those with less facial hair.

While there wasn't a huge difference between clean-shaven and bearded individuals, notable bacteria like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus were more present on workers without facial hair. The authors suggest this may be because small cuts and micro-abrasions sustained during shaving support bacterial colonization. 

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