A Man’s Point of View on Nail Polish

Posted on May 6, 2009

I originally developed an interest in nail polish as a lot of men do, by
admiring the way the intriguing colors sparkle and catch the light on the
nails of many women. My first experience, and what may have enabled me to
develop my interest with nail polish even further was when my wife was
pregnant with our first son. She simply could not bend down and paint her
toenails herself anymore, and so she asked if I would help her out. I
admit, I was pretty bad at it at first, but I got better with practice, and
eventually became even more enthralled with the fabulous depth and
intriguing colors that nail polish was available in.

I don’t think I am unique in this interest because I know that many men take
notice of bright colors (why do you think many women wear it…?). And many
men also want to be noticed and complimented (like all of us do, right?).
So, when I had my first experience with a professional pedicure, I just
thought the next logical step would be to try some color. In fact, I even
received encourgement from my wife on this because she liked the way my feet
looked when they were not all rough and my nails yellow and uneven. And she
knew of my interest in nail polish as well. So, I initially tried black and
it turned out looking very decent and appropriate on my guy feet, not
feminine at all.

Since then, I have tried many colors, including colors that some would think
are more feminine looking, and I have settled down (matured?) to wearing
what I consider more ‘masculine’ colors now. I still like black, but even
more, I like near-blacks with subtle hints of other colors in them (blue,
brown, green and even red). I also like greens, dark blues, dark maroon
(borderline guy color I think), silvers and some browns.

I put out a few pictures on the web (Flickr) to see what kind of comments I
would get, and to my surprise, I received a lot of responses from both women
and men. Surprisingly, there are many more men like me who also have an
interest in this. Sure, a few cross-dresser guys responded too, but the
vast majority of the guys I hear from are straight, many are married, and
like me, they do not have much interest in anything else that you might call
‘feminine’, but they are really excited about wearing their toenails
polished. How about that for blowing away the common stereotype beliefs!
And their girl friends/spouses appear to be very much in support of it too!

It’s almost like I awoke a sleeping giant when I posted those first pictures
because people started coming out of the woodwork and saying things like
“Hey, I thought it was just me who liked this”, or “Wow, you’ve convinced me
that guys really can have decent looking feet too” and “I guess nail polish
isn’t just for women anymore!”. Of course, the gals that run some of the
more popular nail blogs have also jumped into the frenzy by posing questions
like “Why don’t more men wear nail polish?” and “Why shouldn’t men wear nail
polish
anyway?”. The majority of the responses (mostly form women) are
surprisingly positive on this subject. Even Suzy Weiss-Fischmann who is the
Executive VP & Artistic Director for OPI writes a column on their website,
and she openly encourages men to try nail polish. She even goes so far as
to even suggest colors that she thinks work well for men (select “for men”
in the sidebar)!

I am convinced that there is a definite movement toward general acceptance
of men wearing their nails polished. There are just too many guys who
express an interest in it for me to believe otherwise. But, as you might
expect, many are afraid of reactions being negative, and only until they
actually wear their nails polished in public do they realize that most
people don’t even notice. In fact, many receive compliments for being ‘man
enough’ for trying it! The majority of the guys I hear from only paint
their toenails, but a few guys also do their fingernails.

So, has this matured to where most men will now consider it? Not yet, not
until you see it appear more frequently on TV or in the movies, and when
nail salons start openly promoting it. I am doing my part to show a good
example, of how it really can work for a guy, and to encourage other guys
who may already have an interest to just try it and see what happens. After
all, it’s just paint.

And even today, I still am asked to paint my wife’s toenails because she
likes how I do them for her – and she likes the treat!

ToePaintGuy@FlickR.com

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