Guys just like to have pedicures, sometimes even manicures
By Tanya Bricking
Advertiser Staff Writer
My brother isn't exactly what you would call a softy.
But he revealed a side of himself I hadn't seen before when we were together a few weeks ago for a sibling reunion.
He went with me to get a pedicure. He got one himself. And he liked it.
This is the guy who used to enjoy tormenting people with the smell of his own feet. He probably still thinks it's funny. It wouldn't be too juvenile for him, even at 33, to stick a dirty sock in my face purely out of brotherly love. But I digress.
So we're in this nail salon in San Francisco, side by side in the female version of La-Z-Boy recliners, and it dawns on me how much men have to learn about our beauty secrets.
"Todd, your chair's not on," I said when I noticed his seat was completely still. He had already missed out on 10 minutes of pleasure in the remote-control massage chair. He had no idea.
I had an inkling he would be into all of this, though. Once, his wife talked him into going on a spa vacation. He never mentioned it. I never knew if he ever wore a mud mask or had cucumber slices placed over his eyelids. I just imagined it, chuckling in the slightly mocking way sisters do.
We didn't speak as we sat in our chairs and had our feet soaked, preened and pumiced.
I was thinking about the nail polish color the woman across from me selected and what I might name it if I were responsible for creating colors like "Soho Nice to Meet You," "Vixen" and "I'm Not Really a Waitress."
My mind also drifted to the other beauty secret revealed during the vacation: the flat iron. My brother-in-law was intrigued by that. He might have used it to make a grilled cheese sandwich if he hadn't seen it on the bathroom counter and been educated on the wonders of the beauty tool.
I tested it on his hair. Twice. He liked the way it made his locks silky smooth. OK, he didn't say that, but I bet he went home and bought one. For his wife, of course.
By the time I looked back to see how my brother was doing in the salon, the nail technician had talked him into the manicure/pedicure combo.
He told her he had never had a manicure.
She held up his hand, almost as if it were a dirty sock.
"You need one," she said.
This is how it starts. This is why the former no man's land of beauty salons is no longer a man-free zone. Men are finally learning our secrets and finding out women really do like immaculately groomed feet and things that smell good. They'll let a woman razor-scrape their callouses if they can have their calves massaged. And the massage chair, oh yeah. Put a few more copies of Sports Illustrated in the magazine rack and the women will have to start fighting for seats.
This is what is fueling the multibillion-dollar boom in men's grooming.
Finally, they're catching on to our indulgences and learning that real men do book pedicures.
Reach Tanya Bricking at firstname.lastname@example.org or 525-8026.
Read "About Men" and "About Women" at the.honoluluadvertiser.com/current/il/aboutmenwomen.