Sep
16
2014
1


WhyDid Wisdom: I Know What Boys Like

man filling out pollI have always tried to emphasize to my readers- because I know most of them are female and some of them are quite young- that taking pride in one’s appearance is certainly an extension of self worth, however, banking only on good looks is a serious gamble (hence, why I created Smart Is the New Pretty).  In tandem with primping and priming our exteriors we should also be grooming our interiors.  A shiny car is great until you slip inside only to find it full of garbage and leftover McDonald’s wrappers that even a Febreeze ad couldn’t cover up.  Sure, we’re careful about what we’re feeding our bodies (as we should be), but also being conscious of what we’re feeding our minds is what makes us complete packages.

I live in a city full of 400,000 more beautiful women than there are men.  Most people see only see Maybelline and Victoria’s Secret commercials on their television screens.  I’ve seen them in the flesh on more than one occasion, especially around February and September.  And even if you don’t live in a real time perfume ad, women all over the globe are constantly being bombarded by sexy sirens on TV, in magazines, and now even our Instagram feeds.  (Uh, belfies anyone?)  Here’s the thing: the women who stand out are the ones who can stand on their own.

Most of us still subscribe to women’s magazines or at the very least, “like” them on Facebook so as to have stories about losing those pesky extra five pounds, tips to make your man hot, and how to be basically perfect streaming into our lives on a regular basis.  Taking cues from Cosmo and other women who don’t know what men want any more than the rest of us seems like a case of the blind leading the blind.  I could tell you multiple tales of what not to do, but I decided to go straight to the source.  I asked actual men what they thought about certain things we wear and the qualities they find most desirable in women and the answers were pleasantly surprising.  Though they wouldn’t shock Susan Patton.

male modelsWhile this “study” couldn’t even come close to being considered “scientific” (although one of the classes I easily aced in college was chemistry), it does give a little insight into the male brain, which while complex is much more straightforward than our own female version.  To be perfectly transparent, my sampling really wasn’t that random.  It was a slightly homogenous mix made mostly of the men my friends and single ladies I know would like to date and probably pine over between sips of pinot on lonely Thursday nights.  They are the guys who would delight your parents should you show up to Thanksgiving dinner with one of them rather than that terrible ex of yours from college who only wore fleece vests and pleated chinos.  You know, the one who gave your younger brother an unsolicited course in the birds and bees after insulting your mother’s candied yams.  My pool of respondents are educated, successful, and worldly- not to mention handsome.  I suppose I also could have asked guys who frequent nightclubs because I know those guys too, but I don’t have their email addresses.  I can’t even be sure they have email or know what email is.  In any case, I compiled a questionnaire consisting of ten questions that can only begin to scratch the surface of what makes men tick.

When asked about their favorite outfit on a woman…

As I’ve often said, “Keep it simple, stupid,” or K.I.S.S.  This holds true for business and personal matters as well as your wardrobe.  Though answers to this question garnered some pretty scattered results including fitted jumpsuits, lace, sneakers with skirts, maxi dresses, and rompers (which were, ironically, listed as something we should stop wearing- but we’ll get to that), the answer that kept popping up included a variation of white tank/tee and jeans/jean shorts (here is an example of keeping it simple).  So, basically, your drop crotch Hammer pants and ruffled crop top are best left to be worn on a night out with the girls because your beau either did not notice, does not care, and as one of my respondents replied, is turned off by your wearing of labels.  Two other honorable mentions were the cult favorite, yoga pants, and his old t-shirt with a pair of boyshorts.

blue jeans white shirtAnd what we should stop wearing…

Animal print may be a continuing trend for fall, but don’t expect a man to fall for you when draped in pelts.  Sadly, many of the answers to this question happen to be some of our, as women, favorite trends.  As a matter of fact, many of the answers dealt with men’s distaste for women following fashion trends too closely.  The “arm parties” (can we stop calling them that yet?) that we so love are driving men crazy and not in a good way.  All of the clanking is not only creating an imbalance in arm strength for you, but also distracting and annoying him.  Wearing things that don’t fit your body (I have rephrased the answer much more eloquently than its initial iteration) and showing too much skin, namely cleavage are surefire ways to end a date early.  And that bit of underwear showing?  They hate that too but, don’t think that high waisted anything is going to be the cure all.  Last but not least, they may love you in jeans, but definitely not boyfriend jeans.

leopard-coatSo, who do they consider to be style icons?

Sorry, Miley Cyrus, men seem to be immune to your raunchy high cut leotards (not to mention antics) and Katy Perry’s cupcake cleavage seems to be lost on the male species.  As a matter of fact, one of the only young A-listers to be mentioned was Taylor Swift.  It would appear that most men who answered tend to favor classic (and covered up) beauties like Sophia Loren and Grace Kelly.  Other responses included Jackie Kennedy O’Nassis, Audrey Hepburn, Charlize Theron, Olivia Palermo, and the great Kate Moss.

audrey hepburn sophia loren grace kellyAnd regarding makeup: Done up or au naturale?

Save yourself some time and trouble when getting ready by paring back on the effort spent spackling your face in the bathroom mirror.  Though a few of the respondents preferred completely natural, most preferred makeup that looked natural, emphasizing your God given beauty, but not masking it with thick foundation and crazy eye colors.

Do they notice and/or care about our manicures and pedicures?  What about that leg stubble?

Sadly, and I can speak from experience, men do pay attention to details when it comes to our fingers, toes, and the limbs in between.  One respondent summed it quite well with, “It is the overall impression of being ‘together’ not any one particular aspect.”  Others said they notice, but would never comment on chipped nails or an unsavory shade choice.  As for unshaven legs, they were a bit more vocal.  Having a bit of blonde fuzz on or around your knees wasn’t a big deal so long as it didn’t imply that other regions may be overgrown as well.

whydid manicureWhat makes a woman attractive?

The beauty industry is $400 billion dollar industry globally.  We spend hundreds of dollars a month on creams that will rid of us wrinkles, painful procedures to banish unwanted hair, and makeup that guarantees to cover up any minor imperfection.  But what is it that really makes a woman attractive? Turns out, it’s not solely long lashes, flawless skin, or toned thighs.  What do men find most attractive in a woman?  Sorry beauty industry, but it’s brains.  From having a job and her own interests to a strong yoga practice and spirituality, it seems men are more interested in women who have their heads on straight.  Men find women who are interesting attractive.

On what makes a woman interesting…

Much like what makes a woman attractive, the most succinct answer was, “Her brain,” and that response was echoed and elaborated on time and time again.  Having a positive attitude, a sly smile, the ability to hold a decent conversation with well thought out opinions, and confidence were just a few.  A woman who has traveled on her own, can navigate a city solo, possesses her own style, and has something to add to a conversation or is able to teach others also makes her swoon worthy.  Having a little bit of “fire” doesn’t hurt either.

And what makes for a total dealbreaker…

We all have our dealbreakers when it comes to dating and mating.  These are the quirks that can’t casually be overlooked and just deemed cute.  While mine include things like lacking self awareness and wearing sports jerseys, men had some very specific responses to this one.  Interestingly, as one respondent pointed out, “Each [sic] woman is unique.  Something that is awesome about girl A could be a huge turn off for girl B.”  So, while one man’s dealbreaker may be another man’s aphrodisiac, here are some of the more interesting answers and it’s probably best to just bullet point these:

  • Drugs
  • Flirting extraneously
  • Wearing labels
  • Saying “like” too much
  • Seeing her read a celebrity mag
  • If she’s a bad kisser
  • Inability to manage money
  • Not having command of they’re/ their/ there and you’re/ your
  • Lack of common sense
  • Being outspoken with a low quotient for relevant and interesting content
  • No awareness of current events
  • Using “hahahaha” and “lol” in texts

One thing men wished women knew about them…

This question held some of the most valuable information in my opinion.  One gentleman wanted us to know that men aren’t as tough as we think they are and they stress about work and their need to provide.  Another added that they don’t think nearly as much as we do… about anything.  One pointed out that threats, ultimatums, and games aren’t effective because social media and apps like Tinder have leveled the playing field (Ouch!).  To soften that last blow, one response was, “Real men prefer a woman who values herself enough to be ‘hard to get.'”  Follow that up with, “Women please, as long as you’re being insane in your body desires, please, please, please move towards Misty Copeland and away from models/women who look like prepubescent boys.”  My favorite response came in the form of a video (below) and much like my YouTube experiences of getting sucked into hours of puppies, I watched several more videos by the same man, Mark Gungor (this one was life changing).

And luckily, men do know the difference between leggings and pants…

  • Leggings are just a single piece of fabric. kinda like thick tights. pants have some kind of discernible feature (pockets, zippers, etc)
  • Leggings are incredible for any situation but if we are going out to eat or somewhere special throw a pair of pants on please. Preferably leather pants.
  • I’m probably wrong but:  I feel leggings are tighter and comprised of a stretchy material.  Pants can also be tight, and stretchy, but not as stretchy as leggings.  I also feel like pants have seams and leggings may or may not.

 

xx,

WhyDid

 

Related posts:

Aug
28
2014
1


Somethin’ for the Fellas: Copious Row

david chines copious rowRecently, I had the pleasure of virtually catching up (as he’s spent most of the summer traveling and sunning in the Hamptons) with my dear friend, David Chines, founder of Copious Row.  Having always had impeccable taste and being my favorite friend to “spill tea” with, creating an online shopping destination only seems like a natural progression in his career having a major background in fashion, marketing, and digital media.  Below, David answers some questions about the concept behind Copious Row and what makes a truly dapper gentleman.

What is Copious Row?

Copious Row is an e-commerce site dedicated to the discerning man who is looking for unique and interesting items for themselves, their homes, their offices and beyond. It is also the perfect place to find an amazing gift for any man in your life!

How was the concept conceived?

The concept came about because I, personally, couldn’t find a website where I could find different and outstanding products. I felt like the male population was under served in the realm of on-line shopping. I don’t want to buy things that everyone already has.  I was also familiar with many international brands that weren’t available in the US and/or on-line. The site has an incredible international set of vendors that don’t have much US presence. I also kept hearing from my girlfriends that they have the hardest time finding gifts for men – another problem the site solves!

copious row landing pageWho is the Copious Row man?

The Copious Row man isn’t necessarily just one person. The goal was to create a site that men of all ages, geographies, and interests would want to shop on. The only unifying factor I would say, is that the Copious Row man likes the unexpected and appreciates incredible quality and craftsmanship. Our man is looking to invest in beautiful items that are timeless and classic but are definitely conversation starters.

What makes it different than say, Mr. Porter or East Dane?

Unlike those sites, we don’t carry ready-to-wear or shoes. We focus on lifestyle items, our pieces are not seasonal or trendy and don’t have a shelf life. It’s also a very easy sight to shop.  We very rarely have sizing in our items, so there is no need to worry about fit or size. We are also very selective about what we carry – we curate and edit very carefully. We choose the best of a product line making for a great, comfortable shopping experience that isn’t overwhelming.

leather gear cufflinks copious rowWhat must every dapper gentleman have in his closet?  In his bathroom vanity?

Every dapper man has to have a great wallet and a great pair of cufflinks. These items can really define a man and tell the world who he is.  Although most men are very casual these days, cufflinks can be fun and full of personality. They’re a great conversation starter and can tell a great tale.  Your wallet also tells a story – are you casual? formal? practical? It speaks volumes!

For the bathroom vanity – the right hair product! Knowing what works best for your hair type and knowing how to style your hair is essential, it’s one of the first things people see. Dapper starts from the head down!

hairbond hair distorter

What is the biggest style mistake that men make?

Not paying attention to details. When you walk out of your house you are sending the world a message. People appreciate a man who takes care of himself and takes pride in the things he owns. Carrying around a 12 year old wallet is not sexy. Using your grandfather’s torn up luggage is not cool. Women love a man who is sleek and put together.

troubadour leather wallet billfoldWhat is the one item that can take you from looking a bit disheveled to totally dapper?

A great bag. Whether it’s a beach bag, gym bag, briefcase, etc. If you see a man on the street who may be a bit disheveled but he’s carrying a great bag, he will still turn heads and keep people wondering.

mens tote bagWhat must men throw out from their wardrobes immediately if not sooner?

Flip-flops!! If not on the beach, a man has no business wearing flip-flops. They’re way too casual and make you look young and sloppy.

 

Gentlemen, I hope you took notes and ladies, if you’re looking for something extra special for that special man in your life, whether it be your father or fiancé, be sure to head over to shop Copious Row.

xx,

WhyDid

Related posts:

Aug
27
2014
1


Why Did or Why Don’t: Braidy Bunch

cary fukunaga braidsWe have already covered the man bun/mun/male topknot (feel free to weigh in), which does not seem to be going anywhere if this week’s awards shows have been any indication.  Just look at all the fuss over Game of Throne’s, Kit Harrington’s, perfectly executed updo from Monday night’s Emmy Awards.  But all the man buns in the world and even Jared Leto’s ombre mane couldn’t compete when True Detective’s director, Cary Joji Fukunaga, took the stage to accept the award for Outstanding Director.  I, for one, audibly gasped at this handsome man, but it wasn’t just his cheekbones that sent the internet into a tizzy.  It was his hair.  At first glance, he looked clean cut, but as he described his coiffure, “For tonight, I just thought business in the front, party in the back.”

Though Cary was a pleasant surprise in a room full of familiar faces and stuffy industry types and his hair seemed to be a fresh interpretation for man coifs worldwide, he’s not the first to be seen sporting man braids.  As a matter of fact, the night before rapper, Riff Raff, clad in denim had a head full of braids and is probably asking today, “Dafuq?” Even before Riff Raff, there was David Beckham, Axl Rose, and let us never forget Kevin Federline.

famous men braidsI, myself, spent a sunny Saturday afternoon in Amagansett this summer lackadaisically braiding cornrows into one of my man bun wearing guy friend’s head.  We thought it was kind of funny and for him, the look actually worked.  I even taught him the importance of patting his head when it started to itch as to avoid creating frizz.  So, back to Cary’s internet sensational hairstyle and potentially the next wave of hipster hairdos (Slate created a pretty genius rendering).  It may have something to do with the fact that he’s terribly good looking, but the only part of his hairstyle that truly bothered me was his (unintentionally) crooked part which The Cut got a close up of.  You see though, I’m quite dextrous and great with a comb, so Cary, call me next time you’re you’re looking for some Poetic Justice.

What do you think about men with braids?

xx,

WhyDid

Related posts:

Aug
15
2014
0


Beauty Buzz: The Beasts’ Guide to Beauty

male groomingWomen aren’t the only ones who have beauty routines as we can attest by the currently popurlar man buns (aka “muns”).  Along with stealing our rubberbands from the backs of bathroom door handles, men have begun encroaching upon our conditioner, our face wash, and even our razors.  When you share space with a man, you start to share everything and sometimes the lines become blurred– and not in a sexy Emily Ratajkowski kind of way.  Most women allot a pretty penny and significant portion of their paychecks to special beauty products meant to preserve them and cure all their beauty woes.  When your beau starts lathering up with your $60 ant-aging face wash, it can become difficult not to want to dunk him in the tub, but part of you is probably happy that he’s at least decided to shower today.  Male grooming has become more socially acceptable and that can be seen by the wide range of products targeted specifically to the male species.  There was a time when seeing a man in a nail salon was a rarity, but let’s be serious.  Real men get manicures (and hopefully an occasional pedicure).  I, personally, don’t want your gnarly feet shredding my 1200 thread count sheets.  If you’ve come to the horrifying realization that your man has been using your prized eye cream to soften his calluses, it’s time to set him up with his very own collection of dude friendly grooming products.

mens beauty products best1. Baxter of California Cream Pomade, 2.  Anthony Let’s Talk Dirty Duo, 3. C.O. Bigelow Bay Rum Hair & Body Wash, 4. MDSolarSciences Quick Dry Body Spray, 5. J. Crew Abingdon Travel Kit, 6. Aesop Moroccan Neroli Post Shaving Lotion, 7. Jack Black Pit Boss Antiperspirant & Deodorant, 8. Czech & Speake Leather Bound Manicure Set, 9. D R Harris Tortoiseshell Boar Bristle Hair Brush, 10. The Art of Shaving Lexington Collection Razor & Cartridge

 

xx,

WhyDid

 

image via

Related posts:

Aug
13
2014
0


Why Did or Why Don’t: Man Bun in the Oven

men-hairbun-high copyThis summer, men took accessorizing one step further by donning what we now know as the “man bun.”  And while I do have a healthy portion of male readers (God bless you analytics), I will not take the blame (or credit- depending on your stance) for the trend just because I’ve made more than one brilliant top knot tutorial (you can learn “how to” here and here).  For the past decade or so, men hadn’t had much wiggle room when it came to socially acceptable hairdos.  There’s been the classic buzz cut, the Bieber bob, and that whole spiky gelled situation that ruined shams worldwide.  And let’s just be thankful we all survived the “faux hawk.”

While the ponytail is nothing new (hello, Karl Lagerfeld), men decided that wasn’t good enough and began piling their locks on their heads way atop or grazing the napes of their necks, real estate formerly reserved for sweet nuzzles from their beloveds.  I’m not sure who can specifically be appointed as the official firestarter of this follicle free for all, but I think Colin Farrell was one of the male topknot pioneers.  To be fair, average citizens started sporting it well before it became mainstream.  I had an ex-boyfriend several years ago who began experimenting with the trend.  Granted, he also thought waking up and drinking the leftover beer on his nightstand from the night before was par for the course.  In any case, this hair-rowing (see what I did there?) hairstyle has taken over from east to west coast, north to south.  There are several blogs dedicated solely to the praise of ballerina buns fit for Baryshnikov (exhibit A and exhibit B) and The Awl even created a brilliant collection of the male topknot in its natural habitat.

celebrity man bunsMuch like the beard bubble was predicted to pop (and has yet to do so as late adopters are STILL jumping on the bearded bandwagon), the man bun would appear to have a shelf life itself.  Interestingly enough, it seems that the topknot and beard are not mutually exclusive and often worn in tandem.  All this hair has me asking a lot of questions though.  Many men claim to be the superior sex, but I’m beginning to sense a trend.  It started with our eyeliner and skinny jeans then men began eying our tank tops and now they’re angling for our hair ties?  And if you’re in a couple this also leads to a lot of financial hurdles.  Can we afford to double up on deep conditioners?  Do we need to own one flatiron or two?  Won’t our shower drain clog twice as fast?

So with the imminent onslaught of snow, will these top knot wearing gents be forced to concede their coifs once they realize a bun looks more like a goiter under a beanie?  Or will ear muffs have a renaissance for men?  As I typed this, a shiver went down my spine as I realized that the knitted headband or even a turban may not be off limits to a man who has mastered the art of bobbi pins.  I’d be lying if I didn’t get a little hot and bothered collecting visual aids for this post, but I really want to know your thoughts.

 

 xx,

WhyDid

Related posts:



©2011 whydid.com