By Juan de Anda
They flex. They wax. They Spanx. They're the heterosexual men of San Francisco.
The past decade has seen the meteoric rise of these stylish, metrosexual men in urban centers like S.F. and New York, though several pundits at the time critiqued it as a passing fad. But it's held on to become a mainstay in society.
"Metrosexual" was coined by gay writer Mark Simpson in a 1994 article in Britain's The Independent to describe a confident heterosexual male who lives in an urban place like San Francisco and adopts fashions and lifestyles that are traditionally associated with homosexuals.
Metrosexuality can be seen as a new facet of masculine expression, one that goes beyond the traditional "average Joe" stereotype. Prior to the 21st century, masculinity meant restrained emotions, brawny strength, avoidance of femininity, lack of sensitivity, little intimacy, and homophobia. Now there's a mental liberation and flexibility to try activities once deemed taboo or too feminine, like manscaping, Zumba, shapewear, yoga, and skinny-fit clothing, to name a few. These activities don't endanger masculinity but enhance it, by creating a better, more tolerant male. Men of San Francisco, it's time to embrace your own metrosexiness.