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Men flaunt it too!

Move over the ladies. Bollywood actors, too, have taken to showing off their cleavage.

fashion and trends Updated: Sep 03, 2010 02:04 IST
Rahul Sabharwal

Last week, Jess Cartner-Morley, a Guardian columnist made a plea to men across the globe. It was a simple plea. To do away with the male cleavage, a trend that’s found favour even among international celebrities such as Jude Law and Simon Cowell.

“Is it not a little depressing that of everything women have contributed to civilisation, it is displaying your naked chest that men have picked up on?” Jess asked in her column.

But, can we - a nation that idolises Bollywood stars, who would much rather let their pectorals do the talking - sincerely do away with the male cleavage? Fashion designer Nida Mahmood feels it’s about time, we did. “It’s grotesque with a capital G. Why any guy would shave his chest and then show it off, is beyond me.”

But what about our beloved stars - Salman Khan and Shahid Kapoor? “Star or no star, it just looks funny. The cleavage is best left to the women. Guys ought to have a certain masculinity,” Nida reasons.

Author Anuja Chauhan, who’s seen her fair share of male cleavage on Delhi roads, is more unforgiving. “On the street, it’s just offensive. Even among celebs, very few of them can carry it off - like a John Abraham or a Shah Rukh Khan. I don’t like Aamir Khan’s - it’s too booby. Even Salman, with his puffy body, looks bad sporting it.”

Do we sound biased? After all, fashion websites, on several occasions, have claimed that the male cleavage is “the rage”. And, of course, our male models swear by it. “People work out so much, they have to show it off," reasons model Zulfi Syed.

If you must let some buttons loose, stylist Vikram Seth recommends, you do it wisely. “You must shave your chest before showing it off. Short-sleeved lycra shirts in solid colours, such as black, brown or even fuchsia suits such a style best. But it’s a trend that you should only follow at nightclubs and not during the day."

Adman Prahlad Kakkar, who has regular run-ins with film stars, shares the pros and cons. “Well, if you have pectorals that you can move at will, it would make for great conversation.

And look at it from the perspective of a barfly. It’ll give the ladies something to ogle at apart from the socks in your jeans,” he says, adding, “On a serious note, what if you have a hairy chest? Do you shave it? Akshay Kumar does, and he has the second hairiest chest in Bollywood after Anil Kapoor. But if someone tries to flaunt male cleavage at the bhindi bazaar, he’ll look no more than a wannabe Salman Khan.”