Personal Hygine: is it really that different between straight and gay men?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 16, 2008 7:49 AM GMT
    I ask this because all of the women in my office are always telling me that they knew I was gay before I ever told them, just because I "smell good", keep my nails clean and trimmed, always wear clean and pressed clothes, and keep the hair on my ears and brow waxed and "under control".....
    And when I go out to any clubs, "gay or straight", when I get hit on, (and it happens alot!) the men and women always say that they "knew I am gay" because of my personal appearance, grooming and that I "smell good"....I am curious....do most guys not bathe daily or use "reasonable products", or dress in clean clothes? Don't most guys have a scent and a "style" that is kinda their "signature"? Am I really that "unusual" or am I just that "gay"?
    I asked some of my women and straight male friends, last night, if they thought I was "flamboyant". They all said that I was not "flamboyant" but "very direct, comfortable and composed" about who I am and who I am attracted to..... This worries me too, how do I regain my "guy factor" without becoming an "unhygenic pig"? Anyone? What do you do?.....
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    Mar 16, 2008 8:16 AM GMT
    I guess it's the idea that you care about yourself, and the things surrounding you.

    For example, I live with 3 roommates, they're all straight and our apartment is a total mess as much as I try to keep it clean i just give up.
    Their excuse? "we're guys"
    Also, when we're going out I'm the first one to iron my clothes... and what do they say? "aawgh... it's not 'that' wrinkled"

    I guess it all has to do with stereotypes and homophobia. I had a coworker who thought it was sooooo weird that I used sunblock, or any type of lotion; and he almost flipped out when I told him I plucked my unibrow so that it would actually be TWO eyebrows. I didn't want to offend him, because he had a unibrow himself, but i just said " I think it looks really bad, and if I dont like it then i'll take care of it...just like I shave off my beard, I pluck my unibrow"

    I kind of understand, though, he is a Hispanic male in his 30's.... NOT TO SOUND RACIST!!! -- I am Mexican and I KNOW how older men react toward those kinds of things.


    Sporty, my only advice is, keep being who you are... don't try to make someone happy if it's gonna make you feel uncomfortable.
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    Mar 16, 2008 9:10 AM GMT
    Sporty - hey man, you're fine - don't change anything. I do all the things you mentioned - and guys have no complaints so far!!! I think some of the straight guys could take a lesson from us! Only takes a few minutes to look really swell.


  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Mar 16, 2008 9:27 AM GMT
    I don't know about personal Hygieneper say
    but I can usually pick a gay man out of a crowd of str8's by the way he looks
    usually gay men are better out together
    wear better clothes
    have better bodies
    that's on the whole... not everybody
    there are some gay slobs
    but the str8 guys seem to have that down for some reason or another
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    Mar 16, 2008 1:03 PM GMT
    Like the other posters, I don't want to sound like I'm stereotyping anyone, but. . .

    Seems to me that gay guys tend to take better care of themselves than st8's. They tend to be in better shape, more muscles, dress better, whiter teeth, LOL.

    One thing that seems to be a constant is that st8's don't use moisturizers, skin care products, etc. I've had st8 buds react in amazement when I mention that I put on moisturizer (like, what's the big deal?) I don't get it, because they make you look so much better.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Mar 16, 2008 1:08 PM GMT
    Well let me say that I believe the average gay man probably puts forth more effort (as far as personal hygine) than you average straight. Now I know straight men who look great and are always clean and polished and some gays that.. yuck. I'm making a general comment.

    As far as me... I remember my 7th grade teacher saying to me.. "you are so well groomed".... its that extra
    "something" that many gay men put forward that can set them apart.

    And in fact, if someone asks me if a guy is gay, thats something I look for.....how is he about personal hygine?


    Except for the "waxed brow" whats that about???
    icon_eek.gif
  • MikePhilPerez

    Posts: 4357

    Mar 16, 2008 1:26 PM GMT
    Sporty,

    Don't change a thing. If guys go on at you about it, it's because they are jealous. Straight guys could learn a lot from you.

    My family always complain about how long it takes me to get ready to go out. They tell me I'm worse than a woman, it takes me so long icon_lol.gif It doesn't bother me. When I'm looking my best and smelling my best, I feel sexy, and confident.

    You are a great example for how men should be. Don't change.

    Mike
  • MikePhilPerez

    Posts: 4357

    Mar 16, 2008 1:29 PM GMT
    HndsmKansan said
    Except for the "waxed brow" whats that about???
    icon_eek.gif


    And you call yourself gay icon_lol.gif Just joking.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 16, 2008 1:46 PM GMT
    There are many straight men that take care of themselves too.

    There are gay men that don't.

    It is all a matter of personal choice.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 16, 2008 1:49 PM GMT
    Sporty_g saidI ask this because all of the women in my office are always telling me that they knew I was gay before I ever told them, just because I "smell good", keep my nails clean and trimmed, always wear clean and pressed clothes, and keep the hair on my ears and brow waxed and "under control".....
    And when I go out to any clubs, "gay or straight", when I get hit on, (and it happens alot!) the men and women always say that they "knew I am gay" because of my personal appearance, grooming and that I "smell good"....I am curious....do most guys not bathe daily or use "reasonable products", or dress in clean clothes? Don't most guys have a scent and a "style" that is kinda their "signature"? Am I really that "unusual" or am I just that "gay"?
    I asked some of my women and straight male friends, last night, if they thought I was "flamboyant". They all said that I was not "flamboyant" but "very direct, comfortable and composed" about who I am and who I am attracted to..... This worries me too, how do I regain my "guy factor" without becoming an "unhygenic pig"? Anyone? What do you do?.....


    There is nothing wrong with what you are doing if you like it. Personally, I hate when men wear cologne, and I think it is natural, normal and expected that a guy smell a little musty (not skanky) in many situations. There is nothing sexier to me than raw masculinity, without the primping and spraying...I ain't sayin let yourself look like quasimoto, but the men I like drip with sexuality.
  • Squarejaw

    Posts: 1035

    Mar 16, 2008 4:36 PM GMT
    I bet most straight men don't douche...
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 16, 2008 4:47 PM GMT

    LOL, most straight men are not pigs, but they don't wax their brows (or anywhere else), press their clothes to an excess (most just take them right out of the dryer and put them on before they wrinkle, and lastly, referring to the way you smell as your signature is VERY GAY, but cute as hell.
    The reason its giving you away is because women don't have high standards regarding a man's... attire that is. I'm pretty sure you jump to conclusions to assume they want some dirty pig with bad hygine, but most straight men are jeans, tennis shoes, a shirt, deodorant, a little cologne if you're lucky. You on the other hand sound like an exotic bird. Peacocking like that only goes on in the gay world, hon.
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    Mar 16, 2008 5:00 PM GMT
    Squarejaw saidI bet most straight men don't douche...


    icon_lol.gif
  • auryn

    Posts: 2061

    Mar 16, 2008 6:08 PM GMT
    There are plenty of gay men that don't know how to take care of themselves and have the manners of the sterotypical straight man. I used to think that it was part of the gay genetic code, or something, that gay men were better dressed, were, relatively, well groomed and kept clean homes. Then I came out and found out how wrong I was.

    Next time you run into someone that calls you flamboyant and clean, say, "You're welcome". For, after all, you are the gay that raises their property values.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 16, 2008 6:10 PM GMT
    i live with two guys and a girl.....the girl is the messiest of us all...

    most straight men i know though are college kids...so inevitably, their rooms are full with shit and crap and pizza boxes (turns out what i saw in movies is true!)....

    but i think it depends on the person....i find myself to be very clean just because i grew up in a clean, well mannered house. I cant even stand having dirty dishes out on the counter..im always cleaning up
  • nvaguy69

    Posts: 54

    Mar 16, 2008 6:38 PM GMT
    Straight guys want to look good but are paranoid about the stigma of being perceived as vain. And, that usually associates with not being "manly". And, when you have TV shows like "queer eye for the straight guy" with dudes like Carson Kressley, who wouldn't want to dis-associate themselves from that?

    You'll find metrosexual types (city guys) who are probably more into their personal hygiene and grooming than your average gay man. But, when you get out of the city you find straight men so conditioned to not care because it's considered vain and not what a real dude is supposed to be concerned with. They let their girlfriends and wives clean them up which is so lame. The more blue collar a guy, the less he's apt to be concerned about hygiene and personal appearance, etc. Just my observation but isn't always the case.

    I know gay men and even some women who could take some lessons from straight guys.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 16, 2008 6:41 PM GMT
    The only time that I've someone say that they "knew"/suspected I was gay before I told was when I outed myself in junior, and when I went through a clean cut preppy phase with a flare for matching. For the most part I've always come off as straight, but only because I don't concern myself with too many aesthetic things; aside from good hygeine and styled hair. Otherwise, people are usually surprised when I buy a gay magazine, book, movie, or find me buying an entire outfit, with interchangeable garments, all at once. I think it also helps that, taken from one of Madonna's old styles, I've managed to fit myself into bohemian, casual, rock, and preppy clothing styles. Allowing for a bit of a messy look that rings of heterodom, but reeks metrosexual and ubersexual [the last time I was single].

    So maybe not being the best looking all the time, or always wearing cologne, or allowing your eyes to guide your head, if it does?, when you see an attractive male would be good ways of keeping on the low down... I think. But remember, there are straight guys who get confused for gay a lot; if they're aware of it not; and gays like you who've gone a long time having most people think they're straight. But losing your hygeine is not negotiable. If anything, you could get by on an OCD/HCD - depending on how you manage yourself.

    But that's if you really feel that you have to change for other people. I personally won't. Otherwise I'd be a wreck and barfly just keeping up with the rest of the grrls. I'm a bit of a mess at times, and for me that's okay. If a guy's going to like me, then he's going to like me. You should feel more or less the same towards people - in a way that's comfortable for you. If you know in your mind and heart that you're not flamy or whatever cheeky personality quirks that you find unattractive, than that's enough.
  • Starboard

    Posts: 242

    Mar 16, 2008 7:45 PM GMT
    I think that the well groomed/dressed gay stereotype may be the result of some US-specific cultural issues. In Japan, for example, men spend a lot of time and money on grooming/designer clothes without having to defend or deny their sexual preference.
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    Mar 16, 2008 8:14 PM GMT
    I don't think it matters if you are gay or straight. To me, it basically boils down to whether you are clean or nasty. Your sexual preference has little effect in my opinion and it's a shame when people associate cleanliness with gayness. If that's the case then I think a few people should adopt the notion and apply where necessary. If someone thinks you're gay because you're clean then I'd take that as compliment.

    I would have to say it depends on one's upbringing and how they want to be perceived. Some people just grow up nasty and uncaring about how they live and how they look while others prides themselves on it and just like being clean on principle alone. I think it has alot to do with home development and self confidence.

    Anyone who uses the the phrase "we're guys" as an excuse/reason for being a slob is just stupid. Your sex doesn't determine your health stauts. If you live in a messy place it's because you're a messy person who holds little value for yourself and doesn't respect or appreciate the things you have. I've noticed this alot in a few people both gay and straight.
  • MikePhilPerez

    Posts: 4357

    Mar 16, 2008 8:53 PM GMT
    Guy101 said
    Anyone who uses the the phrase "we're guys" as an excuse/reason for being a slob is just stupid. Your sex doesn't determine your health stauts. If you live in a messy place it's because you're a messy person who holds little value for yourself and doesn't respect or appreciate the things you have. I've noticed this alot in a few people both gay and straight.


    I totally agree with that.
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    Mar 17, 2008 3:02 AM GMT
    I moved from Boystown in Chicago, to Freeport Il.Because the real estate prices went threw the roof in boystown. I bought a home in Freeport and set up a shop cutting hair. The straight men here stink and don't bathe very often, dandruff, oily hair very nasty!! Some smell of dirty ass! To the point I have to run a fan and open windows at my shop so I don't loose my lunch! Hetroes are filthy pigs!!I miss the old boystown, its now hetro metro and our shops and clubs are closing, sad visited there last weekend its a gutted out version of what it used to be.Where are they going to hold the gay pride parade now that the neighborhood is now straight? Gentrification be damned!!! JJ.
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    Mar 17, 2008 3:31 AM GMT
    Well I don't know what kind of alternative reality I live in vs you guys or vice versa but I have found straight guys to be more more refined than the gays. More cleanliness oriented, better dressed (shirts with collars vs tight tshirt), etc. Gays can go both ways - but I think they're pretty much on equal footing - plus I know some total slobs who are gay. I am not sure about the unibrow thing though - guess I never noticed.
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    Mar 17, 2008 3:49 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidWell let me say that I believe the average gay man probably puts forth more effort (as far as personal hygine) than you average straight. Now I know straight men who look great and are always clean and polished and some gays that.. yuck. I'm making a general comment.

    As far as me... I remember my 7th grade teacher saying to me.. "you are so well groomed".... its that extra
    "something" that many gay men put forward that can set them apart.

    And in fact, if someone asks me if a guy is gay, thats something I look for.....how is he about personal hygine?


    Except for the "waxed brow" whats that about???
    icon_eek.gif


    SEPARATION...it's nice to have TWO (2) EYEBROWS, and not the single "unibrow", "neanderthal look"....and the waxing of the ears, well I have seen my father and I love him dearly, but he has more hair than Chewbacca. Knowing my heritage tends to be "hairy", I wanted to get some control over it early on....icon_lol.gif
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    Mar 17, 2008 4:17 AM GMT
    Other than daily showers, deodorant, brushing teeth, and wiping the good ol' arse after taking a crap, I personally don't do much grooming myself. My clothes are fairly plain (just a regular t-shirt and jeans usually) and that's about it. I really couldn't care less if there's some wrinkles on my clothes or my eyebrows and hair aren't in some perfectly sculpted shape. And I don't bother with cologne either. On the other hand, my brother who is straight is always buying/wearing the most expensive and trendy clothes and colognes.

    I guess I don't really mind either type of person. Too much grooming seems a bit artificial to me though and if someone looks too smooth/groomed/'stylish' it's a turnoff for me. On a personal level I enjoy being able to take 10 minutes or less to get ready to go out, and am always amused by the amount of time my brother spends to prepare his clothes/smells/hair etc etc.

    Also, this is probably kind of strange, but I'm always a bit worried that if I prepare too much and happen to meet someone who finds me attractive and we hit it off, I'll be DOOMED to have to prepare that much on a daily basis as long as we're together. Ohh, what a scary thought... icon_cry.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Mar 17, 2008 5:18 AM GMT
    If I have learned anything from this site, it is that there are rough guidelines but certainly no absolutes.

    In all of the spectrums below:

    Gay---Bi---Straight
    Effeminacy----Masculinity
    Preening----Middle of the road-----Dirty
    Promiscuous-------Selective----Celibate
    Obese---out of shape----Average----Fit---Ripped---Freaky
    and our favourite
    Non-athlete-------Athlete


    ...there might be some vague generalities one could utter to link them together either causally or via correlation.

    But it seems that every time one of us asks: "Are we ___?", we immediately realize the full spectrum just within this site.

    For example, sporty wonders if personal hygiene is different between gay men and straight men, in other words are those dimensions (orientation and cleanliness) grouped (gay=clean, straight=dirty).

    I certainly haven't seen it. I know straight men who preen, and I know that my personal hygiene is a daily shower with Ivory soap and some shampoo and maybe a bit of cologne once in a long while.

    It might make more sense to ask, not, are gays and straights different. But do people PERCEIVE a difference.

    I would say an unequivocal yes to that. The stereotypes would lead us to believe that straight men sniff test their laundry and wear it two or three times in a row and shower only under duress and that gay men have 12 colognes and more skin product than a spa.

    Sporty, why are you thinking that you need to "regain your guy factor". Why are you thinking that being clean and smelling good make you less of a guy?

    That's the real question.