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Boys to Men need Self Care Too

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Boys, Men, whatever, today we’re talking to you. An interesting thing about getting involved in this conversation is the way I feel almost obligated to write a disclaimer. It wants to say that this is in no way an attack on women’s self- care and that this article does not preference men over women. It’s that sneaky notion that by talking about men in a space often left solely to women, we somehow reject or damage the space for women altogether. But, I resisted writing the disclaimer. And I have a powerful reason why. The idea that suggests if we invite men into the conversation we somehow make it less open to women, is the same pattern that suggests men and women deserve to be treated differently. Fuck this idea.

 

Everyone has skin. Everyone has hair – we can’t let gender dictate how well you treat either of these things. We all need positive self-care and love, right!

 

The fact that we can’t have a conversation about men being supported in women’s spaces without it reminding us how unwelcome women often feel in men’s spaces is a problem. To combat the idea that women don’t belong or thrive everywhere (because they do) – we have to open ourselves up. Lead the world to a brighter understanding of each other. Be better. Invite men into this conversation about self-care, not as a tactic, but from a perspective that sees how it will better both them and us. An all-inclusive world – what a beautiful thing eh?

 

With the rise of the new revamped Queer Eye isn’t society looking towards a better, brighter future for men everywhere? As Jonathon would say “honey it’s not vanity it’s self-care” (God I love that show and their message). Just like Queer Eye is for the straight guy, body scrub and moisturising lotion is for everyone. Why? Everyone has skin – why don’t we prioritise how fantastic body scrub and moisturising lotion makes us ALL feel instead of trying to gender everything from hand soap to mouth wash. Self love and care for all!

 

I think that in the 21st century, were here to correct the wrongs of the past. Social wrongs, hygiene wrongs – anything you can think of. We’re like the social mechanics on a car that used to run great for its time, but just isn’t cutting it anymore. Looking at standards of masculinity now, it’s a little daunting. Men have always been told to pride themselves on how they look – if not quite the same way women have. Take the 1920’s for example; fashion was quite a perilous task even for men and having a good barber was a necessity.

 

Honestly, thank GOD for barbers – you make this conversation so much easier! You’re the real MVP’s. Old school, but classic. I think contemporarily, we’ve kept the barbers and the insistence on being tall/ handsome. But we’ve lost the masculine version of proper care. Where are my dude face masks, my manly man nail salons? Where is my modern equivalent of a suit tailor, that makes you feel warm and loved and taken care of? The same way I feel after a day in a spa. Everyone deserves self-care. Even masculine men.

 

I also understand that we shouldn’t need to have gendered these products to sell them to men. Believe me that’s another conversation to be had. For now, can we ask why some men don’t use the other ones in fear of looking too feminine or be labeled ‘metrosexual’? If the femme perception won’t leave: fine. Ya boy should be feminine anyway! Femme it the hell up straight boys! You gotta look out for you and your body. Fuck those standards of masculinity. Maybe if we all just start doing it, eventually it won’t be seen as feminine or metrosexual, eventually this will be a safe conversation for everyone and eventually everyone will have happy healthy body-scrubbed skin.

 

Lilian Elizabeth 

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