Entries in Personal Care (2)


‘Mansome’: It’s Now a Man’s World Among Women’s Products

Jim Spellman/WireImage(NEW YORK) -- Murses, manx, and mantyhose, oh my. It seems like there is a growing trend of sticking “man” in front of all mainstream women’s products, but it’s much more than that.  There is a whole “mansome” revolution afoot.

Don’t tell Tom Selleck, Burt Reynolds or Robin Williams but there is a new “manliness” of today. More than ever, men are taking great strides to improve their appearances. Gone are the days of hairy chests, scruffy facial hair and thrown-together outfits. Shaved bodies, smooth skin and sensational clothes are now part of the 21st-century male identity.

Companies, products and spas have gone to great lengths to accommodate men in a world of beauty and fashion. Even products like “fresh balls,” an antiperspirant for the male groin area, are on the market.

It’s all part of a revolution in “man-scaping.” A revolution so powerful, it is inspiring men to get manicures, pedicures, waxing treatments and much more.

Morgan Spurlock, the filmmaker of the new documentary Mansome, released last Friday, met up with Nightline to spend a day getting “man-tastic.”

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Spurlock discussed the point of his film over a pedicure at the Bliss Spa in New York City.

“I think there’s a great question the film asks which is what does it mean to be a man,” he said.

The film Mansome features Jason Bateman and Will Arnett enjoying a lovely spa day, but in truth it’s not comic relief, it’s reality. Take manty-hose for example, even Madonna is glorifying the style in her “Girls Gone Wild” music video, where muscular men strut around in heels and pantyhose.

Being a man used to mean being fierce, savage, and hairy, but that’s not so much the case anymore. According to Spurlock, women might say that a perfect guy is comparable to the Brad Pitts and George Clooneys of the world who are the most aesthetically pleasing and also incredibly successful.

“I think you can be a sensitive male,” Spurlock said. “If you are a sensitive male, you are a male-icorn …Manicorn. You are the ever elusive perfect man.”

A few years ago we might call this uptick in grooming, metrosexual, just a style. Now we don’t call it anything because it has become so normal. According to Bliss Spa pedicurists, about 40 percent of their clients are men getting daily treatments like facials, treatments and even something called a “mankini” wax.

Saks Fifth Avenue stylist Eric Jennings told Nightline man bags or murses, man jewelry and MANX -- otherwise known as Spanks for men -- are hot fashion items right now.

“Most guys are now wearing this for vanity,” Jennings said, referring to a pair of MANX. “It will compress you up to 1 or 2 inches around the middle.”

But that’s not all. The underwear company Frigo sells a brand of luxury performance boxer briefs at $100 a pair, and said that the underwear is stretchy and adjustable.

“It keeps you stabilized and your bits and parts in place all day,” said Mathias Ingvarsson, the chief executive officer of RevolutionWear, the firm behind the brand. “You wouldn’t be surprised if a bra and underwear cost $200 in the store so we felt that it was time for the men to get the extra opportunity.”

So there you have it, the new revolution of what it means to be a man. Take a look around, some guy out there is wearing one-hundred dollar underwear, others have soft, smooth skin, and others impeccably dressed. Nonetheless, more men are becoming conscious and aware of where they measure up in society, and how they look.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


FDA Regulation of Cosmetics Nears Despite Industry Objections

Goodshoot/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The average woman applies 12 beauty products to her body daily. For men, it’s six daily.

Yet few consumers know the chemicals that go into those everyday cosmetics.

“Shame on me,” said Bette-Lee Hanson, who was getting her hair done at a salon. “I’m not terribly cognizant of what’s in the products but probably I should be. But I’m not.”

As the list of chemicals in everyday beauty products has grown, U.S. oversight has been nonexistent, according to Janet Nudelman, spokeswoman for the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, a coalition that advocates for safer cosmetics and hygiene products.

“The headlines over the years have really told the story of the problem of unsafe cosmetics,” Nudelman said. “The problem is that there is no one minding the store. There is no federal regulation or law that says companies have to make safe products.”

Nudelman said, however, that Americans had woken up to the problem. This summer Congress is expected to pass a bill allowing the Food and Drug Administration to regulate cosmetics.

The measure would require the labeling of all ingredients and the prohibiting of chemicals linked to cancer or reproductive problems.

Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill., who introduced the bill, said the measure would provide some protection to consumers.

“It would give the Food and Drug Administration -- for the first time -- the ability to recall products that have these dangerous products in them,” she told ABC News. “The $60 billion cosmetics industry is one of the least regulated that we have in the country. We don’t even know how many companies there are right now that are producing their products. We certainly don’t know what’s in them.”

Cosmetic agencies have spent $3.5 million lobbying against the measure, saying that it would curtail innovation and compromise trade secrets.

According to the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, such chemicals as dioxane and formaldehyde, a known carcinogen, can be found in some shampoo. Lead can be found in lip products. Parabens, which have possible links to cancer, can be found in deodorant.

Some skin-lightening creams contain mercury, which has been linked to cancer. There’s also toluene, a headache-causing chemical, in nail polish; and some perfumes contain diethyl phthalate, which has been tied to allergies, hormone distress and dermatitis.

In February, a new study conducted by the FDA reportedly found that 400 lipsticks on the market tested positive for lead, according to the Campaign for Safe Cosmetics.

The European Union has banned 1,200 of these types of chemicals but the U.S. has only banned 10.

“We’re exposed to toxic chemicals through a wide array of consumer products from the moment when [we] wake up in the morning to the moment when we go to bed at night,” Nudelman said. “The unsafe experience we’re being exposed to in cosmetics is really on the tip of the iceberg.”

She advised consumers to look for labels that had shorter lists of ingredients, and ingredients they could pronounce and recognize.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio