It’s the year 2016. You can argue that people are free to pursue whatever pleasures, interests, or hobbies they desire more so than at any other period in history -- yet there are some guys out there who still feel weird or judged when they go into a nail salon for a pedicure? It’s time to not only do the things you secretly want to do, but to do them with absolute shamelessness. Here are just a few examples.
Openly admit Justin Bieber’s music is actually really awesome
Man, woman, child, puppy -- we all have to admit, the Bieb’s new album is straight fire. Except that we won’t. In fact, 21% of Justin Beiber fans won’t even admit to liking him at all! Sure, it’s understandable why one might dislike Justin -- he says dumb things, he is associated with an army of tweens, he abandoned his pet monkey, and he got punched in the face by Orlando Bloom. But it’s not really about Bieber. Bieber is a symbol. A symbol of all the music you’ve ever been embarrassed about liking because its main audience might be tweens or teens, or because the band itself is a cutesy bubblegum pop act that have no qualms with rhyming 'together' with 'forever' at every chance given. Bieber represents every tense pause between Everlong and the next song while your playlist is on shuffle.
But keep in mind that twenty years ago, it was the Backstreet Boys amassing armies of tweens everywhere, being overplayed on the radio, and looking out from the cover of magazines draped in matching denim. We rolled our eyes then -- but now they’re gearing up for a reunion tour, and we’re the ones all buying the tickets. Now I Want It That Way is played at every office holiday party and every karaoke bar across the country, indiscriminate of gender or creed. Is it time, or is it the novelty of ‘90s pop that makes it “okay” to scramble for the mic the second “You are... my fire” blares through the speakers?
Why wait the two decades until your 401k is finally worth something to openly embrace a song as good as Bieber’s Sorry when you can do it now, because you want to? Let’s stop loving what we love ironically, or dealing with our love for cheesy pop music by compartmentalizing it in the “it’s ok that I like this because it’s a guilty pleasure” box. Instead, let all men aspire to be this bearded Texan hero singing along to Bitch Better Have My Money at a Rihanna concert and get on with their lives.
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Take and post that selfie
Everyone takes selfies. Everyone. Even the 12 people left on this earth with flip phones have taken grainy selfies with their front facing cameras. (Thanks Razr!) Fashion bloggers taking #ootd posts (that stands for Outfit of the Day, fellow old), fitness gurus flexing their abs, cosplayers showing off their newest Game of Thrones threads -- we see these types of selfies all the time. Lots of other selfies are tongue-in-cheek, which for some reason always get a pass.
And yet: an ordinary guy with no #personalbrand to peddle nor any jokes to make, innocently posting a selfie in a baseball cap, ends up with the crap roasted out of him by his friends. He might even become “that guy who posts selfies too much,” even though he posted one photo.
It is argued that taking a selfie is the “least manly thing” one can do because it implies vanity. Apparently, guys aren’t supposed to try so hard. And even worse, a lot of these male self-portrait artists are labeled as narcissists -- and sometimes even psychopaths, thanks to a 2015 study that was picked up by seemingly every media outlet. Though the Ohio State study did state that men who post selfies (or even worse, edit their selfies) exhibit anti social tendencies and scored on measures of narcissism and psychopathy, it also stated that while these men had higher levels of these traits, they were all within a normal range. (That part didn’t make the headlines.)
So, it’s not weird. And you know what else? People (not your mouth-breather friends who will make fun of you for literally anything) want to see your face! Georgia Institute of Technology researchers examined 1.1 million photos on Instagram and deduced that photos with human faces are 38% more likely to receive likes than photos with no faces, and 32% more likely to attract comments. You can’t please everyone, but you can probably please yourself if you just go ahead and post that selfie from golden hour you’ve been sitting on -- this is what the Valencia filter was made for.
Get your manicure/pedicure
If you do a quick google search of men getting pedicures, you’ll find hundreds of articles like “What’s it like to get a pedicure as a man?” or “Should guys get pedicures?” or “Straight men getting pedicures, crazy or cool?”
Here’s a question: why is hygiene crazy? Why must entrusting the cleanliness and appearance of one’s toes to a toe professional raise this many questions about masculinity?
There are PLENTY of dudes who get mani/pedis on the regular, if that is even a thing that is important to note. But it’s still not a normalized experience, whether you’re in LA or Landover, Maryland, where some guy sued a salon because they charged him a dollar extra for his manicure because of his gender. You’re part of the problem, random salon in Landover.
If a guy already feels ashamed about getting manicures, bringing legal action against a bunch of manicurists probably won’t have him bursting with his definition of machismo.
It really is understandable why anyone would feel self conscious about it. But really, the feeling of soaking those piggies in warm water has been likened to a religious experience -- and you should let no man, woman, or tiny voice in the back of your head hold you back from experiencing the bliss of buffed toenails.
[Bonus rationale for history buffs: Even back in the year 3200 BC, soldiers of Babylon used to paint their nails with green and black kohl to intimidate their enemies, as evidenced by the nail kits found in their tombs. In 600 BC China, long nails on both men and women, adorned with precious metals, were a status symbol, setting them apart from laborers and workers.]
Go ahead and drink that fruity cocktail
The season for summer drinks is upon us and you better not let it pass by because your boys are too busy drinking cervezas. Embrace the summery cocktail with Stoli Vodka's raspberry, blueberry, and orange flavors. It’s time to drink what you want. Go ahead and check out the site to learn more.
To those dudes who really want to wear a Speedo to the beach:
American men have long avoided those tiny, form fitting scraps of spandex that give their business the most public hug since Monica & Bill’s. The dearth of Speedos on our beaches is a pretty solid deterrent for guys who, deep down inside, really want to wear one -- a vicious Speedo cycle that causes the brave few who dare don a Speedo stand out like unicorns. (Uh. Metaphorically.) Why they want to wear one is irrelevant. Maybe it’s the snugness. Maybe it’s the tan line minimization. Maybe they were on a college swim team. Maybe they want people to think they might have been on a college swim team. Maybe they just want people to know they don’t give AF -- except as it stands, they do give AF, because they’re not wearing a Speedo.
Honestly, if you’re one of these guys, and you’re thinking this much about it -- do it. Wear one. Be the change you want to see on the beach. It’s not your fault the States are miles behind in Speedo acceptance. In France, you will literally be escorted out of a public pool for wearing swim trunks or board shorts and forced to buy a scrap of spandex from a vending machine. They claim it’s a hygiene issue, as they don’t want people to jump into a pool in clothes they could have worn outside, which is somehow dirtier than a pool. Rules are rules! In Brazil, barely-there male swimwear isn’t a rule as much as it is a rite of passage. Wearing a sungah, tiny briefs with just a bit more coverage than a Speedo, is the norm during summertime on the beaches of Rio. It’s Brazil -- they wear board shorts all year round, they have to switch it up come summer. Bottom line is, it doesn’t matter what you look like, or what everyone else thinks -- it matters that you go ahead and do the thing that you want to do. And don’t just hide in the water when you do! Own it.