Kershaw says he gets some money from merchandise and donations, but that barely covers the cost of his morning coffee.
The site and app are simple; as with Tinder and other popular online-dating services, users “heart” other users, and those who match can interact.
Users can also search for people by words in their profiles and set their geographic range for matches to as wide as “global.”they’ve been chatting up people far from home.
“For two weeks now I’ve been getting nonstop messages from all over the world,” says Steve Lax, 31, a bearded user in Florida.
He says he’s been using Google Translate to exchange messages with a woman in Brazil.
He hasn’t gone on any Bristlr dates yet but has plans for a few meet-ups. Another user, Liz in Brooklyn, New York, met a guy for beers and burgers, and says she’s even run into two ex-boyfriends on the service.
Kat Kissick has preferred bearded men for as long as she can remember. “And if I end up making out with someone with a beard, that’s OK too.” Kissick is far from alone in her predilection for scruffy gentlemen; she’s one of 60,000 people around the world, from Iceland to Iraq, who have signed up for Bristlr since its launch last October.
“It’s a personality indicator that maybe this man likes to have fun, maybe they’re creative, maybe they’re just trying to express their individuality,” says Kissick, 40, who lives in St. So when she saw a Facebook post a few weeks ago about Bristlr, a dating website and app for men with beards and the people attracted to those men, she signed up without hesitation. At Bristlr’s helm is John Kershaw, a bearded, 28-year-old software developer who lives in Manchester, England.One day last fall, Kershaw was thinking about how he could contribute to the growing “on-demand” economy of Uber, Airbnb and online dating.The tagline came first: “Connecting those with beards to those who want to stroke beards.” Kershaw says he was mostly joking when he posted a signup page on Facebook for the service, then yet to be developed.To his surprise, 70 people showed interest within a week.“I felt like my bluff had been called,” he says, and so he got busy launching a website and app. Bloggers helped spread the word, and membership has doubled every month, he says.Most users come from the United States and United Kingdom; membership is also strong in Brazil, France, Canada and the Netherlands.