13. Alexander Graham-Bell
Call me Maybe?
Contributions: The telephone, but also tons of inventions from later in his life
Beard: The classic big bushy white beard like a Father Christmas with inventions instead of presents.
12. Gilbert Lewis
I’ll be your electron-pair acceptor, baby
Contributions: Discovered covalent bonds and electron pairs, also contributed to the fields of thermodynamics and photochemistry.
Beard: Neat and stylish, but a good length. Slightly too respectable though, which may explain why despite getting 35 nominations, he never won a Nobel Prize
11. Norbert Rillieux
Nationality: Creole American
Contributions: Developed a modern way of refining sugar that made it cheaper, easier and safer. Also developed a method for combating the Yellow Fever outbreak in New Orleans that was rejected by the state, only to be copied by white engineers a few years later.
Beard: Wiry goatee with bushy moustache combo. Most excellent.
10. Leonardo Da Vinci
“Great man, great beard”
Contributions: Leonardo invented so much stuff most of it was re-invented by other people because no one ever really got round to going through all his notebooks to work out what he wrote down. His contributions to the field of anatomy were extensive and legendary, and he also was a vegetarian who would buy and then free caged birds, which is awesome.
Beard Da Vinci has been so influential in everything he did I’m pretty sure most subsequent scientists have a beard is because of Leo.
9. Wilhelm Röntgen
x rated beard
Field: Physics, Medicine
Contributions: He discovered X-rays (or Röntgen Rays as they’re called in German) and took the first x-ray images of skeletons (his own and his wife’s). He never took patents on his work and donated his Nobel prize money, and died very poor.
Beard Stupdendously long and of an admirable bushiness.
8. Francois Englert
“Massive beard, bro”
Field: Particle physics
Contributions One of the co-discovers of the ABEGHHK’tH mechanism (which is the hilarious name given to the Higgs mechanism by Peter Higgs himself) which won him a Nobel Prize in physics this year.
Beard A shorter, neater more modern take on the classic big white beard. Both timeless and contemporary.
7. Ernst Mach
Do you think Gilette googled this guy before they named a set of razors after him?”
Contributions: Did groundbreaking work on shockwaves and fluid dynamics: the Mach number, which describes faster than sound travel, was named after him.
Beard: An excellent full face covering
6. Abdallah Muhammad Ibn Jabir Ibn Sinan al-Battani al-Harrani
Or al-Battānī, to his friends
Field Mathematics and Astronomy
Contributions His measurements of the movements of the sun and stars were so accurate that Copernicus was using them 700 Years later. His contributions to mathematics include expanding various basic concepts of trigonometry set out by the ancient Greeks.
Beard: Full and bushy, the classic “Islamic Scholar” look.
5. Charles Darwin
It’s not the strongest beard that survives, but the most adaptable to style
Field: Geology, Natural History
Contribution: Darwin is most famous for inventing the never-ending internet argument. He achieved this by observing that finches on different islands in the Galapagos had different beaks to suit the specific environment they lived in.
Beard: The beard Darwin grew in later life is the one that sticks in the modern imagination of him, primarily because it’s awesome.
4. William Thomson, 1st Baron Kelvin
A seriously cool beard
Contributions: When he graduated from uni, one of his examiners declared to the other “You and I are just about fit to mend his pens”.
Through a long and varied career he’s most famous for his work on formulating the first and second laws of thermodynamics during which he set about quantifying the exact value of absolute zero, which got named after him.
Beard Comparable with Darwin as the definitive Victorian Scientist beard.
3. Ivan Pavlov
Contributions: Classical conditioning (Pavlov’s Dog), won the Nobel Prize in physiology for his study of digestion.
Beard: The top 3 are all Russian, who appear to excel at academic beard growth. Practical against those strong St. Petersburg winters with an excellent moustache to boot, Pavlov’s beard is an absolute ringer.
2. Igor Kurchatov
That beard’s the bomb
ContributionsWas the head of the Soviet atom bomb project, also helped build particle accelerators and more prosaic nuclear powered devices.
Beard Just completely ridiculous. By combining a short cropped haircut and close attention to grooming everywhere else to a huge shaggy chin-mane results in one of the greatest beards of all time, not just in science. However because the majority of his work was in weapons and destruction, I’m not giving him the top spot.
1. Dmitri Mendeleev
He’s got this beard game sorted
Contributions By realising that, when listing the elements by atomic mass the same behaviour repeated itself perodically; Mendeleev sort of invented modern Chemistry by putting them all down in his Periodic Table of the Elements.
Beard Another St. Petersburg classic (see Pavlov), Mendeleev couples the wild style with completely unkempt hair for a mad-genius look.