Ah, Youtube, the cool Uncle of every person on the planet, the one who wears really nice shoes and has expensive cologne, but you really can’t figure out how he affords it all. Everyday, millions and millions (literally millions) of people of all ages flock to youtube for just about any question they have, before the idea of asking anyone around them even pops into their head. You know you’re guilty of it too, we all are.
There’s no shame in it, popular Youtuber Aaron Marino makes $25,000 a month on making male style advice videos, with over a million views on more than half of his videos. It’s no surprise that people would flock to this well of “free” male style information, so I decided to take some time and learn all I could from a bunch of different channels to if I could become the ultimate man.
Then there’s always the question of can, and should. Sure, you can go to the popular platform to learn how to walk, talk, and breathe, but should you? Here’s what I discovered about myself after pouring over videos about styling myself into a better man. I only watched videos with over 100k views, so you know, the good stuff.
You’re Walking All Wrong
Channelling the Four Seasons track from a billion years ago ‘Walk like a man’, the first thing that caught my eye is the wealth of videos suggesting I follow their instructions to walk in a more manly fashion. That’s right, if you think you aren’t supposed to put any thought into how you walk, you’ve already made a gigantic mistake, but it’s not irreversible. It’s not just about looking cool, it’s about the subconscious signals you’re sending everyone around you, apparently.
Walking with your hands in your pockets? Big no-no. Not only is it ruining the lining of your pockets (you know, the things you’re supposed to put things in) but it’s making you look uncertain and kind of shifty. I’ve been told by the myriad of pearly white teeth and mysteriously similar hairstyles through my computer screen that I need to almost always be puffing out my chest when I’m walking, to illustrate dominance and confidence in myself and surroundings.
But that’s not all, I should make sure I’m not swinging my arms too much, because I wouldn’t want to look childish or too carefree. “Don’t take this all too seriously, but maybe semi-seriously.” one dazzling personality said. You wouldn’t want that cute barista to think you’re a shifty, childish, cowardly punk ordering hazelnut coffee, would you? There are over 6 million videos about walking correctly on Youtube, unfortunately I didn’t watch them all, so you’ll have to find your own walking sweet spot.
You’re Talking All Wrong
Never, ever say ‘Um’. Like ever. Stop saying ‘like’ when it’s not part of the sentence, for that matter. I must have watched hundreds of youtube videos on the matter (just for this article, so be grateful) and across all of them I was told time and time again I wasn’t being thoughtful enough with my vocal responses. Answering too quickly gives the impression to the other person that you aren’t listening to them, and adding ‘um’ to make up for your lack of conversational planning is just as subconsciously insulting.
I watched one video that told me never to break eye contact with someone, and another immediately after that told me I should methodically break eye contact with people or they other person will think I’m crazy. One video that told me I should smile a lot regardless of the conversation if it was a new person I was talking to. Another video told me I shouldn’t smile at all during the first conversation with someone because I wouldn’t want to give them the impression that I’m easily entertained. Naturally, my head was abuzz with all this new profound information gifted to me by the popular video platform. Which brings me to my next point.
You’re Sending Signals to Everyone With Your Hair
Everyone around you is immediately making an “informed” decision about you after briefly glancing at your hairstyle, did you know that? The fade tells people I’m a pretty dependable guy with a steady job because I go to the barber pretty often. The manbun tells people I understand women in a deeper way than others because my hair is vaguely feminine.
Popular Youtuber Alex Costa says that my hairstyle (tight and curly with the sides shaved) says to people that I’m a reserved guy who takes himself extremely seriously, and that if I wanted to seem more fun and versatile, I’d need to allow the top and sides to grow more harmoniously, and only then would I start to see an appreciable improvement in my social interactions. After all of these videos, I feel like I learned a really valuable lesson from Youtube after all!
Don’t Listen to Youtube for Style advice
Unless you’re looking to the platform for say, tieing a tie because you forgot for the 20th time, I’d say you should just consider the type of person you want to be, go out to a place you frequent, and do some mild surveillance. Emulate what you like, don’t emulate what you don’t. Ask your barber for advice about your hairstyle, don’t slouch when you walk, and be thoughtful about your responses when you talk to people.
After hours and hours of crawling through Youtube content to become the absolutely perfect man, I only really learned one thing: Unless you’re hoping to unnaturally induce extreme neurosis, don’t listen to Youtube for your style advice.