I was surprised to learn there's a book entitled "1000 Beards" but it validated my curiosity, that's for sure. They interviewed the author, and I found myself nodding to the fact that Hollywood of course favors the more youthful look of a clean-shaven face. If a character has a beard, it generally signals that he is on his way to losing it, and Jack Nicholson in The Shining is used as an example.
It was also pointed out that beards are popular in professions that are outside of mainstream corporate jobs, such as sports and writing (don't worry; I have no intention of trying to grow one) , but are a big no-no in politics. Apparently, the last president with a beard was Harrision and the last one to even have a 'stache was Taft, in the very early 1900's.