Hair Coloring for MenQ: Are only gay men coloring their hair?
A: Absolutely not. In fact, the idea that only gay men color their hair is often propagated by the fact that most men, in general, prefer to be more discreet and conservative in their hair-related actions. Gay men, in some cases, tend to be more open about cosmetology procedures, and thus are more-often noted in public venues.
In fact, there have been products specifically geared to men's hair coloring needs almost since the advent of haircolor. In the fifties and sixties, there were metallic salt haircolor formulas that were leave-in rinses that gradually built-up in the hair, slowly covering grays and giving a natural look. These still exist, but are incompatible with most any other type of haircolor formula.
Another factor is that for a long period of history, men and women had separate venues for their hair care needs. Women attended the beauty parlor or salon, while men went to the barber shop. Both places catered to the general interests of the clientele.
There's also the issue of cultural standards of the day. Throughout different periods of human history there were varying standards of "the ideal". In the 18th Century, the fashion was for pale skin and hair. Men and women alike wore wigs which were styled with pomades of wax and animal fats and powdered to make them white. The skin as well was powdered to grant a pale, un-tanned complexion. The reason for this was that laborers, servants and tradesmen had to work in the sun and became tanned from the exposure. Having pale skin was a sign of privilege and nobility - someone who had no need to toil like a commoner.
Fortunately, attitudes about haircolor use are changing and there's really no longer a stigma attached to haircolor use. Even in salon visits. While there are still barber shops and salons, the differences in the two are growing less distinguishable regarding the services offered. Many modern barber shops offer a full range of salon services as well as spa procedures. These days, anyone who espouses the idea that haircoloring makes a man less masculine is well behind the curve in the social conscience.
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