Its time for part 4 of the campaign. And its time to talk about Masculinity in men. How manly does a guy have to be to be considered as normal? This is something that affects all men regardless of sexuality. Is it only okay to feminine if you’re gay? Is camp bad? What is it that makes masculine men more sexy in today’s society?
So what makes a man Manly… ?
I asked this question and here’s what I got back…
Supporting his family and being the main provider, no tears, emotional stability, mature, confident, physically muscley or a beer belly – not skinny, a beard etc.. This is, as many will agree, the stereotype of a man. But we live in a society now where more women are choosing to continue careers after having children, suicide and depression in men is being more recognised but is still on the rise due to stereotypes and pressure for men to fit in is higher than ever. Is enforcing this stereotype doing more damage than it’s worth?
Is it true that the more manly you are the more attractive you are?
I asked the question and 85% of females say they would prefer to date a manly man over feminine. And yet when asked what they look for in a man they want the ‘feminine’ qualities. They still want to be seen as equal in the partnership, want men who are not intimidated by strong women, and be able to talk openly with their partner and share feelings. They want romance, they want comfort, and they want good manners and respect. There is a clear juxtaposition of wanting a stereotypical manly man and wanting the qualities of a stereotypical feminine man. But what if we could have both?
How many guys have been accused of being too feminine or gay with a negative connotation?
So I asked some guys this question, and 86% of men said that they had been called too feminine or gay in a negative way. And 75% of these men identify as heterosexual (straight).
We as a society are so obsessed with putting people into boxes. From birth you have girls and boys toys, you get told stupid things like “big boys don’t cry” etc… What if instead of labelling each other you just let people be… Some guys are more emotional than others but they are still men, in the same way you will get women who aren’t as emotional as other women.
We are people who want to take part in #endthestigma but yet still put people into boxes. And I am not talking about having no gender etc.. but what I do think is just because (and I am going to put it quite frankly) you have a penis this will not choose the path your life will take. Just because you have a vagina it does not mean you have to stop doing anything. You can have a penis and cry. And when you put it like that I think it sounds pretty stupid that just because you have a penis we would say otherwise.
I am actually pleased to announce that I have some pretty great friends and here’s the facts. What makes men attractive (taking out the scale of femininity) is; being caring, being a good father figure, actually noticing changes with their partner whether its a haircut or a new perfume and just being fully present as themselves. As Robyn Howe put it “A real man is someone who doesn’t hide his true self.” Just a little something to think about.
Here’s Charlie! If you recognise him it is because he is normally behind the scenes at our shoots as our hair stylist. Charlie will quite openly tell you that he is seen by society as feminine. An assumption about Charlie is as he’s gay there’s no real judgement about him being feminine. As this judgment/stereotype may be seen as true in some eyes in others it’s not. Particularly amongst the rest of the gay community. Now Grinder (a gay dating/hook up app) is used by so many and it is so god damn judgemental. You will literally see things like “No Asians, no fems,” etc..
Charlie will face judgment from everyone, of all sexualities. Men and women who still use “gay” as an insult and those who just want the manly stereotype.
How feminine should Charlie be?
Charlie should be as feminine as he god damn wants! He can wear what he wants, say what he wants and act how he wants. Charlie is Feminine. But this is not a bad thing at all. Charlie can be feminine yes but he can also be eye watering-ly hilarious, a talented hair stylist/hair colourist, kind, supportive, politically intelligent, and an all round great friend. And that’s just who Charlie is.
Charlie is Pretty! (or handsome whatever you want to go with!) You know, for any kind of guy.
Don’t forget to check out our last campaign post; You Are Pretty! You Know, For a Sporty Girl.
You can hit Charlie up on insta; Charl_willi246