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Makeup and men. It’s not just for clowns anymore.

In yet the latest salvo in the wimpification of American men, adult males are now being pushed to wear make-up, get plastic surgery and undergo other cosmetic “enhancements” that were once — and still should be — the exclusive domain of women.

That’s the topic of an April 2 New York Magazine article, “Male Vanity: You’re So Vain.” The article details the “new breed” of men. They clamor for face peels, chin implants, manicures, lotions, frosted hair, botox injections, cosmetics. And the list goes on.

These are not gay men, either.

It’s the latest scary combination created by a society in which men aren’t allowed to be men anymore. Remember Willie Nelson’s song, “Momma, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up To Be Cowboys”? Well, Momma and her feminist galpals have taken it literally.

They’ve tried to reverse the irreversible — that “boys will be boys” — by not allowing them to be boys. All in the name of equality. Title IX, for example, has taken away football from them at Boston University, swimming, diving, and gymnastics away from males at UCLA and wrestling at several schools. Muscular, athletic women at those schools now get
the athletic scholarships — like women’s water polo players at UCLA, whose push for “equal rights” ended the schools’ legacies of male Olympic Gold Medal swimming champions, like Tom Jager and Bruce Hayes, and gymnastics Gold Medallists Mitch Gaylord, Tim Daggett, and Peter Vidmar. While their female counterparts have stolen their scholarships and are getting masculinely buff and muscular, guys are being sent to the Clinique counter to buy bronzer and eye cr?me.

It’s like the movie, “Freaky Friday,” where nutty role reversal becomes the norm. And doesn’t work.

Men and women are different, and forcing them to assume each other’s characteristics can only lead to disaster — and to guys like Commander Waddell and former Sen. Kerrey crying on national television. It’s painful to watch.

And this confusion of traditional gender roles isn’t by accident. It’s the result of failed social experiments, like the single-mom household. Men are supposed to be strong and brutish, macho and brawny. But where will they learn it? Men can’t learn to be men from their single moms. Or loser guys and absentee fathers on TV.

And as more and more single mothers populate society, look for a whole new generation of wimpified, sensitive men being raised by them. Instead of learning how to be men from fathers in their lives, they’ve been taught to adopt their mother’s ideals. Men wearing makeup is no surprise when they’ve been raised by mothers who watch Oprah, and who’ve
imposed their ideals and principles of last week’s Oprah beauty makeovers on their male progeny — male progeny who should be watching football and going hunting and fishing.

Unfortunately, women’s ideals of beauty have been imposed on prominent males in every corner of popular culture. The top pop singers and rock acts are girlie-men. Singers like Ricky Martin, actors like Leonardo DiCaprio, and boy bands like N’Sync look like they primp for hours. They use too many beauty products. And besides, the phrase male beauty
industry is an oxymoron. Men are supposed to be rugged, not beautiful.

Sadly, this imposition of the nouveau male cosmetic ideal even spread to the presidential election, with Al Gore consulting feminist Naomi Wolf on the niceties of alpha-male earth tones and sporting more makeup at the presidential debates than a drag queen. This is what feminists like Betty Friedan had in mind, when they urged men to “get in touch with their feminine side.”

The New York Magazine piece is accompanied by a list of the “Ten Things That Look Too Gay.” Men, here’s a tip: If you must ask whether clogs, tight stretch spandex, or frosted hair looks gay, you need help. Real men wouldn’t even consider this stuff.

And they wouldn’t consider makeup, either. Men are supposed to find beauty in the opposite sex, not themselves. They’re supposed to be concerned with being a man — with brains and brawn and work. A guy that spends more time on his looks than his girlfriend does on hers, has something wrong with him. He’s miswired.

“A generation of guys raised on ‘The Six Million Dollar Man’ are happy to let the technology rebuild them,” declares the article. But Steve Austin — that television show’s bionic man — was the ultimate icon of masculinity. His superhero brute strength was the centerpiece of the series. He’d never don eyeliner or concealer or get a facelift. And neither should any other male. Makeup was strictly for the use of his female counterpart, the Bionic Woman. As it should be.

“We couldn’t call it makeup,” an Aramis Vice President told New York Magazine. “The M-word is taboo. Guys have a real problem with that.” Thank Heavens for small favors. But, unfortunately, despite due resistance, the cosmetics industry is using new packaging and slick marketing to try to turn our men into a nation of drag queens. It’s unseemly, freakish and out of whack. And, disturbingly, it’s happening.

Yes, a nation of momma’s boys, raised on Oprah and Jerry Springer, has become a nation of synthetic, make-up obsessed men. A nation of men who have now succumbed to an industry — cosmetics and beauty — that is run by women and gay men, who have no idea what it means to be a real man.

No matter how many oils and cr?mes they try to impose on men, it’s contrary to nature’s most basic instincts. In the end, our internal wiring rules. It tells us that machismo is the ultimate aphrodisiac that makes men appealing to women.

Real women do not want to date lipstick lesbians in men’s bodies. They’d rather date the captain of the football team than the guy who’s as concerned with his looks as the prom queen. Most women will take the brutish, burly football player, any day, over the sensitive, gel-and-powder-encrusted, Hugo Boss wearing powder puff. Give us back the men we used to know. Real guys without manicures and pedicures.

Give us Joe Namath. But make him leave the pantyhose behind.

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