Dec. 13, 2007 -- If your husband, son or father won't tag along when you want to purchase clothes for him this holiday season, try a Shoppenboy.
French menswear store Celio has launched a way to help shoppers by appointing male models, some with extra large appeal, to help them find exactly the right gift. Now shoppers can choose a man, who dons red boxers, whose body type is most like the man they're buying for. The concept is that the various-sized models help people find the right fit for their purchases.
"It was great because I'm always lost. I never remember the size," said Celio Customer Julie.
The store came up with the Les Shoppenboys concept a year ago, and Celio decided it would seek male volunteers. What began as a joke slowly has taken own its own life, after an online casting received 2,000 submissions.
The men have attracted more than consumers seeking gifts for their husbands and boyfriends. They also have received surprised looks on French sidewalks outside the retailer.
Some men looked uncomfortable, but the women seemed unable to get enough of the average Joe models.
"I think it makes people feel good. It makes other men less self-conscious because we only ever see good-looking men," said Shoppenboy Laurent.
The group now has produced a dance routine, a calendar and has even spun off a few celebrities, like 19-year-old Shoppenboy Hugo, who can be seen posing as Spiderman online in the signature red undies.
Although the men do not want to be taken seriously, some think the gentleman are having an important impact on the male psyche. It's not all about looks. Size matters, too.