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Why Blue Bloods' Tom Selleck Almost Shaved His Mustache To Play Frank Reagan

They say the clothes make the man, but what about the facial hair? It's hard to envision the flawed but lovable Frank Reagan (Tom Selleck) without his iconic mustache, yet a recent interview with Selleck reveals that he almost had to shave his crumb catcher to play the iconic "Blue Bloods" patriarch.

"At the time, they had him as the New York City police chief. That's not the boss in New York, the way it's structured," Selleck told People in April, as part of its cover story. "And I said, 'Well, I don't think they can have mustaches, so I'll shave off my mustache.' And [executive producer] Leonard [Goldberg] said, 'Let me check with CBS.' And they said no." Thus, Selleck kept his soup strainer and Frank Reagan came into the world wearing a full mustache. It's a look that hasn't changed once during the many years Frank has helped protect the Big Apple.

While the notion of a push broom-free Selleck might feel shocking at first blush, the actor has popped up in multiple places without his facial hair — and he once even shaved off his lip curtain for a famous talk show host.

Tom Selleck has appeared in a few roles without his mustache — and once shaved off his mustache for Conan O'Brien

If Tom Selleck had followed his initial impulse and shaved his mustache off for "Blue Bloods," it wouldn't have marked the first time audiences had seen him sans facial hair. He appears without a lip coat in several early roles, like in "Myra Breckenridge" and later in the romantic comedy "In & Out" at the request of director Frank Oz. Selleck recalled for People, "[Oz] said, with the barber there, 'Would you trim your mustache a little?' I said, 'Sure.' And then he said, 'A little more than that.' And then he said, 'Well, would you shave it all off?' I said, 'Sure.'"

He's even shaved off his mustache on national television – or at least half of it. While appearing on an episode of "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" in 2004, Selleck drew giggles from the audience by taking an electric razor to his face during the telecast under the host's watchful eye.

Producers sometimes asked Selleck to shave his lip rug for a role, which means he's had to adjust to life both with and without his signature facial hair. "I just got used to it and used to have to shave it off for those early jobs. And then it was kind of okay." Roles like Thomas Magnum in "Magnum P.I." drew Selleck in and helped cement his reputation as a hairy hunk — and Frank Reagan did nothing to change that image, making his name synonymous with manly mustache-wearers worldwide — and that's not an awful reputation to have.