I was weird looking when I was growing up, I looked like a girl when I was a child – I would wonder what my parents thought about it at the time. I had a lot of soft features such as small eyes, small ears, eye lashes enough to be teased that I was putting on mascara (imagine a 10 years old putting on mascara). That’s how I got introduced to the word mascara because I was teased about a feature that I have and I had no idea what it was. The older I got there was always some soft feature I discovered that I got teased about; so, next was my eye brows, I was told I tweezed my eye brows or did something to them. Next was my hair so by now I’m used to it because clearly there is something wrong with how I look and its features that I can’t change. My hair is a little bit curly so I got teased that I’m a bushman or I’ve been adopted (so I would cut my hair most of the time) because I’m the only one that has these features compared to my siblings.
I am an adult now, I’m much more comfortable with my soft features now than I was when I was a child, now that you think about it the same features I was teased about, is what girls want or strive for, but I’m a guy so it doesn’t mean much. When you look at my brother we are very much alike but his features are much harder than mine. I remember when I was in high school I thought I was gay because of my features obviously, not understanding that being gay has nothing to do with how you look. I was going through adolescent at the time and my body was changing and I didn’t understand what was happening to me.
With people like Kanye West redefining masculinity with regards to fashion and as an artist in general, it created a safe place for someone who had a background like mine. It makes sense why I could relate more to the nerds because we were the outcast of society while growing up. We didn’t fit in the general masculinity category therefore we were misunderstood most of the time. Now we live in a world where men are encouraged to speak more often, to open up more because we as men have evolved. We live in a world where the idea of masculinity has to (must/should) change not because it’s a Thursday afternoon but for mankind. There are more conversations about masculinity energies and that means that women also can have masculinity energy.
Fast forward to today, one realizes that the same soft features I was teased about as a child are actually the best features about me, well besides my personality. Those features make me who I am, those features are redefining what I believe masculinity is and what it’s about. Its ok to have soft features, to have long curvy eye lashes as a man, its ok to have perfect shaped eye brows, its ok to take care of yourself. As a man its ok to cry, its ok to be open – to speak about love and to be about love.
Grooming is an important part of our lives as men because when you look good, you feel good. Since I discovered the Vaseline SPF15 even tone face moisturizer my life hasn’t been the same (what was I using before this?) and my skin feels good specially now when it’s cold. Face moisturizer and my hair moisturizer are the two things that I can’t live without because they work for me.
Taking care of your hair, skin and understanding the difference between the different skins on your body is important. Taking care of yourself is essential it’s no longer just something women do, we do it too.