The Y Chromosome Makeover


The beauty industry has evolved and today it explains how men are one of the most important parts of this sector. GITA HARI explains how beauty is now a man’s domain as well.

The advent of men’s salons has made them step out in style with an air of flamboyance. The long cherished domain of exclusive beauty parlours for ladies now compete with unisex salons with an equal number of the opposite sex walking in for a clean-up.

Beauty has encroached into the macho territory and how! An array of men’s beauty products like cleansers, moisturisers, face masks, hand and body lotions, and more have invaded dressers and bathroom cabinets, jostling for space with their female counterparts. Sales of men’s grooming products have seen such a steady rise that it out beats the demand for women’s products.

On The Footsteps Of Rock Stars


Rock stars started the trend of waxed chests and the well-travelled folks lapped it up. Guys between the age of 20 and 50 have no inhibitions to be regular salon clients. While older men generally go in for facials, manicures and pedicures, younger men are into body clean-ups and hair colouring. And to put it in a more subtle manner, waxing is in rampant demand. Men don’t generally request for waxing or threading appointments across the counter, but have it done later.

According to the 29-year-old Aniket Karia, Founder of FMCG start-up, All Heart, “With all the dirt and pollution in the city, everyone irrespective of the gender, must get a facial done regularly. Facials, candle wax treatment and foot massage are de rigueur in my beauty schedule.”

Corporate Makeover


Corporate makeovers are preponderant with over-worked CEOs and young executives who prefer to put their feet up and surrender themselves to various treatments at the nimble fingers of a beautician in a salon.

“Bad skin can come in the way of good looks and self-esteem. Gone are the days when we went to the salon for a quick haircut. Men now go for anything from a manicure and pedicure to beard grooming, waxing and facials. I personally visit salons two to three times a month,” reveals salon regular Ameya Davda, Co-founder of Space Valet.

“Professional men have a certain style. They want their personality to reflect through their outer look too. Corporate men believe in feeling and looking good and avail our beauty services quite often,” observes Mahika Yadav, Director, Madonna, Delhi. Speaking on brands, she says, “Our clients are well aware about their beauty needs. They know exactly what brand and what products they need and our professional stylist helps them with it.”

Grooming The Groomsmen


With the trend of weddings taking extravagant dimensions, it has become mandatory for not just the bride and groom but even their family members to go for a hallowed grooming session and appear polished and radiant.

Do Interiors Matter?
Do male beauty salons need to be epitomised as captivating capsules for aspiring Greek gods? Is pink unthinkable and does classic black elicit the right response?

“We believe that colours should not be classified on the basis of gender. There is nothing like a macho décor. The interiors of our salon are subtle and vibrant. We stress on the salon to be neat, clean and have a pleasing aura, which welcomes all. All the different sections are segregated. We make sure that everyone is comfortable,” says Manisha Yadav, Owner, Bella Madonna in NCR.

Karia feels, “I like minimalistic salons, with great service and a friendly staff. I don’t think we care too much about the interiors.” While Davda begs to differ, “It would be important in this industry to endure the backdrop. The presentation and decor should be unisex, not necessarily macho. Traditional lines and customary definitions of what are masculine and feminine are still present in our country.”


Medical Options
Rather than superficial beauty facials, scientific treatments and long-lasting help can be gained from medical experts. Dr. Saurabh Shah, Dermatologist, Bhatia Hospital, Mumbai, throws light on two reasons why men visit experts, “For glowing skin and to stop loss of hair. Those who come for beauty therapies are in the age group of 20 to 50 years, with chemical peeling for anti-ageing and skin rejuvenation being in greater demand.” Dr. Bharti Magoo, Cosmetologist-Dermatologist, Owner at Golden Touch Clinic, has a lot of celebrities and film stars as her clientele. She stresses that, “most hirsute men opt for laser technology to get rid of unwanted hair on chest and bushy eyebrows apart from depilators and facial creams.” Dr. DG Saple, Senior Consultant Dermatology & Cosmetology, SL Raheja Hospital says that 65% of his patients are male and in the age group of 27 to 37 years who opt for treatments like acne, scars, hair loss and pigmentation.

In today’s times, the Y chromosome is scrubbed, smoothened, massaged and the millennial man blatantly flaunts his buffed up self which is nattier and more trimmed than the astro-turf!

About the author

Gita Hari