I’m pretty sure there’s more to life than being really, really ridiculously good-looking... This quote
from the movie Zoolander, starring Ben Stiller, describes the handsome yet sometimes
intimidating persona of the metrosexual man. Metrosexuality is the choice to spend
time and money buying and using high-fashion goods.
What makes the metrosexual man? It takes more than a straight guy in clean clothes.
For starters, it is his highlights, well-moussed hair, and body chiseled out of marble.
This guy works out, not at the gym, but at the fitness club. He can also be very picky and
pays attention to the smallest of details.
For example, Thomas Bottom, a third year Computer Science major and borderline
metrosexual uses nothing but his moisturizer du jour and the best creams. “I buy a
specific non-comedogenic moisturizer...and I wouldn’t use anything else unless it was
recommended by someone who matched my dressing style or taste,” he explained. “I
would just assume only they would know about that kind of thing.”
Similarly, Josh Zagaczkowski, a second year Marketing and Public Relations major and
self-described “metro” cares very much about the condition of his nails. “There is such
a negative stigma on long nails and no one wants to shake your hand if you have nasty
nails all over the place” he reasoned.
Although this issue has only recently been tackled by the media, there are already two
distinct subsets within this sect of man-pretty.
Which Type Are You?
Members of the first subclass are referred to as a girl’s best friend. Also known as Type
I, they are the sensitive metrosexuals and are most likely to compliment your mom
on her dining set. Usually extremely outgoing, they are often observed to start conversations
with anyone they make eye contact with. Some remark, “It’s almost like an
obligation.” Another common trait is charisma, which leads many to following careers
in Human Resources or Communications.
However, a Type I’s single most defining trait is his effeminate nature, which often causes
others to ponder the metrosexual’s sexual preference. This is because metrosexuals
often give the impression of being “too clean-cut” and “too sensitive” or “too empathic”
which is the complete opposite of the stereotypical “manly-man.” This is often the case,
especially at RIT, where some guys give no attention to their personal appearance by
wearing the same clothes every day and growing a scruffy neck-beard.
“This actually happened to me. I liked a guy
in high school who was actually very metro. I
wasn’t sure if he was straight or not. [It] turned
out he was straight,” commented Kailyn Brand,
a second year Biotechnology major.
In stark contrast to the first subclass, Type II metrosexuals
possess an unyielding, incorrigible,
macho attitude. The term guido, which previously
only applied to Italian-Americans with loud personalities
living in the Northeast cities, is often
associated with this group.
At present, guido describes almost any guy from
the Popped-Collar Movement. These metrosexuals
have many common attributes with Type I metrosexuals
such as extroversion, charisma, and
maybe even likeability. They are, however, very
The main difference between the two types is
why they are so conscious of their appearance.
Type Is tend to dress nicely and give the impression
of being more approachable, while Type IIs
tend to dress nicely for the attention they receive
from those around them, especially the
Pretty Boys at RIT
“The way I dress is how I act. A loose sweater
means I’m loose and easygoing,” Zajaczkowski
remarked on his chosen lifestyle. He mentioned,
“Layers and form-fitting shirts” were two aspects
he looked for in clothes.
Jonathan Halloran, a third year Biochemistry
major and another self-described metrosexual,
said, “I dress the way I do, not necessarily
because the clothes are comfortable, but because
I’m most comfortable in them.” His style
seemed to have an impact on his personality.
“I met a lot of people I otherwise wouldn’t
have met [since I started dressing metrosexually].
I used to be a lot shyer than I am now,”
Even the smallest detail matters. “There’s a
pinstripe effect,” Zajaczkowski explained while
talking about deliberately hanging his keychain
tassel down his leg. In this respect, it takes a lot
of subtle planning to pull off metrosexuality.
Some believe that metrosexuality defines who
they are. It is a constant state of being, whether
they are out with friends or at home. “I think
[metrosexuality is] more of a lifestyle,” Halloran
commented. However, for some metrosexuals,
it is only a social behavior to dress up when they go out or meet new people. “Metrosexuality
isn’t a lifestyle; it’s a...social thing,” said Zajaczkowski.
A Female Perspective
When asked about her opinion on metrosexual men, Nadiah Ghazalli, a fourth year
Biotechnology major, said, “I like guys who take the time to look nice, but not guys who
take the time to look pretty, but I definitely prefer guys who look nice and presentable
rather than guys who don’t take the time to dress up at all.”
However, Monique Harris, a second year Biotechnology major, said, “I think that if
the right guy can pull it off, then it’s totally acceptable.” The manner in which a guy
uses his ability to look good must balanced with the situation, or he might come off
Said Natalie McHugh, a second year Visual Media major, “A guy who actually spends
time with a comb and gel, I don’t get that...For me, personally, my parents would be,
like, ‘What the hell?’ if I brought one home.”
Thanks to the guys at Glover’s Barbershop, 672 South Ave, Rochester, NY.