Red noses are an iconic symbol of Comic Relief’s Red Nose Day (Picture: Rex Features)On Comic Relief day, you generally can’t move for red noses.
It’s the iconic symbol of the special charity night – a bright red ball squished onto someone’s nose in the name of raising cash for the good cause.
But have you ever wondered why the Great British public don these funny little noses? Do they have a secret meaning?
After all, we part with cash to get our hands on them every other year and they don’t exactly enhance our faces, so what’s the story?
Why do we wear red noses on Comic Relief?
The basic answer to this is because Comic Relief runs a charity night every other year called Red Nose Day.
These red noses are therefore a symbol to celebrate this event. After all, if it’s called Red Nose Day we’re not going to wear blue ears, are we?
The first red nose design came about in 1988 and it was a plain affair.
Nowadays, the design is changed each year to encourage people to want to buy the different and up-to-date model.
The reason it is a nose is all because of Comic Relief founders Sir Lenny Henry and Richard Curtis.
Many years ago, Henry and Curtis were in a meeting discussing the concept of Comic Relief. They were on the hunt for a charity symbol that was bold and fun but also simple – and it had to be something you could wear.
One person in the meeting joked, ‘what about a red nose!’ The rest is history.
They are worn to raise awareness for the fundraising appeal and by making a small donation to the charity – £1.25 this year – you can own your very own nose.
Are the Red Nose Day noses made from plastic?
Yes, they are. However, with plastic no longer deemed a sustainable source, there are talks for the noses to be plastic-free from 2021.
In February this year, one primary school announced they were banning the ‘single use’ plastic noses
An open letter written to the BBC stated that the move was brought about by the outrage over plastic pollution in the seas, highlighted by the BBC Blue Planet programme.
And it seems Comic Relief is taking note.
According to iNews, an environmental group has revealed that Comic Relief bosses are hoping to produce a plastic-free nose for their next Red Nose Day, which is scheduled for 2021, with 2020’s event being Sport Relief.
‘The noses in the next iteration of Comic Relief will be plastic free, I understand,’ Sian Sutherland, co-founder of A Plastic Planet, told the publication.
‘All of those red noses are manufactured over a year in advance. We will be working with them [Comic Relief] on the next Red Nose Day.’
While this has not been confirmed by Comic Relief itself, a statement from the charity stated they plan to explore their options.
The statement read: ‘We recognise our responsibility to ensure all of our campaign products, which raise so much for good causes, are as environmentally friendly as possible.’
How to get a red nose for Red Nose Day 2019
If you want to help the cause, you can snap up a red nose and wear it with pride today.
You won’t be able to order any online now, given today is Red Nose Day, but get yourself to your local high street stores, like Sainsbury’s, Oxfam and Argos, as they are selling the bright red fashion items.
If you just desperately want a 2019 nose and don’t mind it being late, you can purchase up to 39 red noses at a time from the official Red Nose Day online shop for £1.25 each.
There are eleven new Red Nose Day nose designs, including nine red noses, a rare green one, and an even more rare nose that you can turn upside down, to effectively enjoy two noses in one.
These cute Disney aprons are available too (Picture: Comic Relief/PA Wire)Red Noses aren’t the only way you can support Comic Relief by going shiopping.
The folks at TK Maxx teamed up with Disney and Comic Relief to produce a whole bunch of lovely products, including Fairtrade t-shirts, pyjamas, tea towels and tote bags.
TK Maxx promises that: ‘Money from every purchase will help children and vulnerable young people in the UK and around the world’.
On top of that, the Red Nose Day website is offering the likes of aprons, badges, glasses and wristbands.
Red Nose Day is today, Friday 15 March. The live TV broadcast will air on BBC One from 7pm.
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