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Why are our men becoming so vain?

A SURVEY on male grooming has thrown up an interesting fact. Today's men spend almost the same amount of money on beauty products and fashion as women do.

Such a change in half a generation is startling. I have one brother who is two years younger than me and when we were growing up it was all my mother could do to try and get him into the bath.

"I had one last week. This is cruelty!" was his usual complaint as she tried to pry his fingers off the bathroom door. He was aged about 20 at the time.


Back then, no self-respecting lad would brush their teeth more than once a week either because if they did they were called either a 'sap' or a 'big girl's blouse'.

And as for fashionable clothes -- you could forget it.

Dressing up consisted of a stripy shirt with the collar turned up, a pair of jeans with legs as wide as manholes and a waistband up around the armpits.

How things have now changed.

I have a 14-year-old son who spends so long in the shower every day that he is going to bankrupt us when water charges come in.

Once dried and suitably moisturised, he then fogs up the whole house by applying a half can of Lynx about his person.

He uses so much of the stuff that there is no insect or bird life within a one mile radius of our house.

Gel is then liberally applied to his hair so that each follicle can stand up on its own as if it were set in concrete. All this effort is just for going to school.

"It's getting ridiculous," said Patsy.

"I came home from work the other day and there was Jose lying on the couch, with slices of cucumbers over his eyes, a face pack on his chops and my cashmere pashmina wrapped around his nether regions."


"Eek!" said Maggie (she had bought the pashmina for Patsy's birthday, not thinking that it might end up covering Jose's jewels).

It turned out that Jose had carried out some all over body exfoliation and then relaxed with a facial and some eye therapy.

He had used all Patsy's products including her hair removal cream and then, in case he got a rash where he shouldn't, enveloped himself in her cashmere.

"God be with the days when a shower and a slap of Old Spice was enough.

"I'm not sure I can cope with a man who is vainer than I am," she sighed.

Like that's ever going to happen ...