Impeccably trimmed to 30 inches, Afridi spends 30 minutes a day washing, combing, oiling and twirling his facial hair into two arches that reach to his forehead, defying gravity.
"People give me a lot of respect. It's my identity," said the 48-year-old grandfather in the northwestern city of Peshawar, when asked why he was prepared to risk everything for his whiskers. "I feel happy. When it's ordinary, no one gives me any attention. I got used to all the attention and I like it a lot."
For centuries, a luxuriant moustache has been a sign of virility and authority on the Indian sub-continent.
But in Pakistan, Islamist militants try to enforce religious doctrine that a moustache must be trimmed, if not shaved off.
So Afridi went from celebrity to prisoner of Lashkar-e-Islam, then a rival and now an ally of the Taliban in the tribal district of Khyber on the Afghan border.
"I'm still scared... I'm in Peshawar to spend Ramzan with my family but most of the time I stay at home and tell people I'm in Faisalabad if they want to meet me," he says.