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Mustache Cups

Updated on January 1, 2018

A Splendid Invention For Mustache Wearers

If you've ever sported a mustache, you know how easy it is for food and drink to get stuck in it.

Fortunately, an English potter named Harvey Adams invented the mustache cup to keep your well groomed mustache from getting spoiled by your coffee or tea.

A cool mustache cup (aka mustache mug) makes the perfect gift for the mustache wearer in your life. Below you'll find many unique mustache cups and more info.

Image used under Creative Commons from daveyll.

Mustache Tea Cups
Mustache Tea Cups | Source

Quick History of Mustache Cups

The mustache cup was invented by an English potter named Harvey Adams in the mid-1800s. It was the Victorian Era and most men sported a mustache at the time.

Many of these mustaches were waxed or dyed. Drinking a hot cup of coffee or tea resulted in melted wax or wet dye to ooze into the drink or down the embarrassed drinker's face.

To solve this problem, Adams invented a ledge that went across the cup and had a semi-circular opening in the middle where it met the edge of the cup. This ledge (also known as a mustache guard) allowed the gentleman to drink his beverage while protecting the well groomed mustache from the liquid.

The mustache cup quickly became a very popular item and spread from England to America.

Image used under Creative Commons from awduthie.

Mike's Cup
Mike's Cup | Source

Antique Porcelain Mustache Cups

Most older mustache cups are hand painted with period art work. Many of these feature landscapes, historical events or famous figures. The uniqueness of an antique cup can make it an interesting conversation piece or a surprising gift.

From fine and dainty to heavy and rugged, there's a quality porcelain cup to complement any mustache. Good places where you can find them are in antique shops, yard sales, estate sales and on eBay.

Have You Used A Mustache Cup?

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Left Handed Mustache Cups

Because of the ledge, you can only drink from one side of a mustache cup. So a right handed mustache cup is really awkward for lefties. Fortunately, there are some mustache cups made for left handed men.

How Do You Spell It?

Mustache or Moustache?

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Mustache Cups From Royal Crown and R.S. Prussia

Royal Crown Derby and R.S. Prussia were two famous porcelain manufacturers that produced mustache cups during the height of their popularity. Royal Crown is still in business today, however R.S. Prussia ended production around the time of World War I.


The following web articles were very helpful in researching mustache cups. Check them out for more info...

Those Magnificent Mustache Cups by Pauline C. Peck (originally published at which is no longer operational)

Mustache Cups vs Shaving Mugs an eBay Guide entry by nibblesm80

Biographical Info on Harvey Adams by Bethesda Methodist Chapel

The Mustache by Evangeline Holland

R.S. Prussia by Pamela Wiggins

Please leave your thoughts on mustache cups and mugs in the comments section below.

Tell The World About Your Mustache Cup!

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      kbean 3 years ago

      No...mustache MUGS have little holes on the inside shelf to hold the shaving brush, or sometimes just a porcelain divider. Mustache CUPS have a curved shelf with a large hole, which would prevent the hot tea from melting a gentleman's (dandy's) mustache wax or dye.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      @MissMalaprop: Hi, what museum did you work at? How many were in the collection? Thanks

    • alina nicoleta92 profile image

      alina nicoleta92 4 years ago

      Awesome cups and great lens.

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      The-Quirky-Banana 4 years ago

      Never heard of these before- awesome! :)

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      MissMalaprop 4 years ago

      I used to work at a museum, which is where I first discovered mustache cups - we had a bunch of these in our collection!

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      sherioz 5 years ago

      These are so cute. If I had a moustache I would get one - but I think I might get some hormone treatment first - or instead.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Because most people are not very ambidextrous, left-handed men should use right-handed mustache cups and right-handed men should use left-handed cups so that they can do other things (like writing) while drinking from their mustache cup or mug.

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      athena2011 6 years ago

      This is the first I've ever heard of a moustache cup. I think it's a wonderful invention. I've known many men with moustaches in the past and never seen any of them use one. Are they rare finds? I think they're a great gift idea.

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      resabi 6 years ago

      Thought you'd like to know that this lens is featured in my Ten Intriguing Collections lens. Thanks for the inspiration!

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      resabi 6 years ago

      Fun lens. I never thought about the left-handed issue! My husband had a moustache cup for years and years. Now he's clean-shaven, but I'm lobbying for the return of the 'stache and the mug! Blessed.

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      dannystaple 6 years ago

      I've got a fair 'tache, and sport a beard often too. I'd not see those! Great for drinking soup in....

    • joanv334 profile image

      joanv334 6 years ago

      Love the cups, thanks for sharing!