By John Berman, Elizabeth Stuart and Cassy Arsenault
Murses, manx, and mantyhose, oh my. It seems like there is a growing trend of sticking “man” in front of all mainstream women’s products, but it’s much more than that. There is a whole “mansome” revolution afoot.
Don’t tell Tom Selleck, Bert Reynolds or Robin Williams but there is a new “manliness” of today. More than ever, men are taking great strides to improve their appearances. Gone are the days of hairy chests, scruffy facial hair and thrown together outfits. Shaved bodies, smooth skin and sensational clothes are now part of the 21st century male identity.
Companies, products and spas have gone to great lengths to accommodate men in a world of beauty and fashion. Even products like “fresh balls,” an antiperspirant for the male groin area, are on the market.
It’s all part of a revolution in “man-scaping.” A revolution so powerful, it is inspiring men to get manicures, pedicures, waxing treatments and much more.
Morgan Spurlock, the film-maker of the new documentary “Mansome,” released last Friday, met up with “Nightline” to spend a day getting “man-tastic.”
Spurlock discussed the point of his film over a pedicure at the Bliss Spa in New York City.
“I think there’s a great question the film asks which is what does it mean to be a man,” he said.
The film “Mansome” features Jason Bateman and Will Arnett enjoying a lovely spa day, but in truth it’s not comic relief, it’s reality. Take manty-hose for example, even Madonna is glorifying the style in her “Girls Gone Wild” music video, where muscular men strut around in heels and pantyhose.
Being a man used to mean being fierce, savage, and hairy, but that’s not so much the case anymore. According to Spurlock, women might say that a perfect guy is comparable to the Brad Pitts and George Clooneys of the world who are the most aesthetically pleasing and also incredibly successful.
“I think you can be a sensitive male,” Spurlock said. “If you are a sensitive male, you are a male-icorn … Manicorn. You are the ever elusive perfect man.”
A few years ago we might call this uptick in grooming, metrosexual, just a style. Now we don’t call it anything because it has become so normal. According to Bliss Spa pedicurists, about 40 percent of their clients are men getting daily treatments like facials, treatments and even something called a “mankini” wax.
Saks Fifth Avenue stylist Eric Jennings told “Nightline” man bags or murses, man jewelry and MANX — otherwise known as Spanks for men — are hot fashion items right now.
“Most guys are now wearing this for vanity,” Jennings said, referring to a pair of MANX. “It will compress you up to 1 or 2 inches around the middle.”
But that’s not all. The underwear company Frigo sells a brand of luxury performance boxer briefs at $100 a pair, and said that the underwear is stretchy and adjustable.
“It keeps you stabilized and your bits and parts in place all day,” said Mathias Ingvarsson, the chief executive officer of RevolutionWear, the firm behind the brand. “You wouldn’t be surprised if a bra and underwear cost $200 in the store so we felt that it was time for the men to get the extra opportunity.”
So there you have it, the new revolution of what it means to be a man. Take a look around, some guy out there is wearing one-hundred dollar underwear, others have soft, smooth skin, and others impeccably dressed. Nonetheless, more men are becoming conscious and aware of where they measure up in society, and how they look.