The NYT does a trend piece, which probably guarantees it's over now. I've never experienced being carded with my Romanov, but this dude has:
The beard, once a symbol of age, had suddenly become a sexy symbol of youth for the first time since the Allman Brothers ruled FM.
For me, that meant an unforeseen windfall: In the eyes of young, cool New York, I had unwittingly shaved 10 years off my age by not shaving. I was getting carded at nightclubs. Tattooed young women working the register at coffee shops no longer called me “sir.” At downtown parties, I invariably found myself huddled in the corner with bearded guys in their 20s, talking about the new Fleet Foxes album or the best way to get past the velvet rope at the Box. I was a member of a tribe.
That experience changes you. Having a beard functioned as a substitute for hormone replacement therapy. Not only did my beard advertise, on a fundamental physical level, testosterone, but also I was starting to feel the testosterone. I found that wearing a beard makes you feel two inches taller, and 10 pounds burlier. A beard was a lazy man’s alternative to weightlifting.