-  Photo: Carlos Valenzuela

Photo: Carlos Valenzuela

Photo: Carlos (left) on the set of the Macho Makeup photo shoot, published in MODERN SALON, with model Ricardo. 

Remember metrosexuals? Thirty years ago (yes, it was that long ago), the term referred to a meticulous male who really worked on his grooming and appearance. Metro men vanished — where’d they go? Did they disappear thinking their masculinity was on the line?

Males dressed up and waited on the sidelines to be called to play until they never were and left. I will entertain any emotion, but not my boys, who fake reading a text to eavesdrop on how to best prevent dark eye circles and cover up a surprise pimple attack. Bottom line: men wanna know. We just need to say it with butch appeal. That doesn’t read well, but you know what I mean.

Salon professionals, especially barbers, let’s give the guys a break and shatter the male grooming ceiling.

Go ahead, say it: yes, it’s okay to use dude powder down there and seize on conversations like these to help out a bro:

  1. The breath—now and forever, if a guy wants to kiss the girl, they best make friends with breath mints, especially after that deli lunch and second cup of java.
  2. If people move away when a dude walks in, it’s not the chance to grab a good seat. It may be time to talk about shower gels, dude powder, and switching deodorant.
  3. Dandruff—be prepared with easy solutions for the guys. Tell them what to use and when. Don’t just stand back and brush off flakes.
  4. Acne and blackheads are just as stressful for a man as for a lady. Talk about your skincare routine and explain what estheticians do—they see men too, you know.
  5. Nose and ear hair—a hair here, there, and everywhere. Ask: do you, by any chance, own one of those nose clippers thingies? And name some brands.
  6. Nail it—guys cut their nails obsessively. Once a week is fine. Advise them to get that stuff around the nails off by visiting with a nail tech.
  7. Be cool with this one: some guys just can’t grow a beard—but insist on it. Scruffy is sexy but not sparse and spotty. Okay, how about sideburns or maybe a goatee?

Use your most tactful approach not to hurt a bro’s feelings, but if you remain silent, turn in your Magic cape, and comb at the door when you leave work today.

Carlos Valenzuela is a salon professional and bilingual writer. He is the author of the multi-awardwinning novella Letters to Young Carlos. Visit his work at carlos-valenzuela.com, Modern Salon, and find him on GayTucson.

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