Coined by British writer Mark Simspon in the 90s, the term metrosexual might just be as dead as Latin, come to think of how men these days have stepped out of any gender norm for the sake of fashion and self-expression. Isn’t the world glad that's the case now, huh? Possibly, with the help of many international men's fashion magazines fronting various brands and of course the Internet globalizing perspectives in men's style, guys now have more liberty in conveying their art, beliefs, and economics with what they put on their backs.
In showbiz, men delving more into fashion isn't a myth. Gone are the days when the entertainment and style genres saw a dichotomy, with the surge of celebrity stylists helping lead many of these stars to take fashion seriously. Yes, including male stars. Designer of 11 years Jerome Lorico knows this all too well, having worked in the wardrobe department of many TV shows prior to carving his own niche in fashion design. Throughout his experience, he saw actors shift from 'wearing what was told of them' to 'coming up with their own sense of style.'
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Jerome is ecstatic of this change, saying it's important for actors in general to find a style that would reflect themselves.
"Actors are creative people and if they don't know how to express themselves in another way aside from acting, it's not really conclusive. Actors should have their own voice in acting and at the same time in choosing their own style. 'Cause if they don't have that ability to translate their style through clothes, what more in acting?" he tells ABS-CBN Lifestyle.
"Maybe, yeah, they can be actors but have bad sense of style. But it makes it better if they are good actors and at the same time have a good style."
Philippine showbiz used to have the likes of Pancho Magalona, Fernardo Poe Jr., and Gabby Concepcion as retro style benchmarks, all imbibing that matinee idol look representative of their respective eras. These days, the entertainment scene now acknowledges style personas deviating from the typical screen hero. Such evolution can be blamed on the grunge and postmodern times, but the true thesis statement here is style being both classic and dynamic. In relation, Jerome drops the names of Piolo Pascual, Jericho Rosales, Jake Cuenca, and Raymond Gutierrez as top male personalities who live this idea.
"These are the people who currently gravitate towards my style. It's because they have knowledege and wisdom. They're completely different, di ba? So the people that I’ve mentioned are kinda different from ordinary artistas—they’re smart, they have their own style, and they know what they are doing and they want to excel. Other artistas are just in the business for the fame," he declares.
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Jerome, who boasts of an international experience including an internship at Alexander McQueen, still works with many of the stars mentioned. He then stresses more on those who stand out, being experimental and open enough to different creative currents.
"Jake's still very stylish and I think he matured a lot in terms of style. That's when you know a person is actually is a stylish person—when his style evolves, too. A lot people will latch on to a specific style for the longest time tapos di na mag-e-evolve and that's okay. But I'm more interested with people who are actually open to improvement and all other new kinds of ideas," he says.
"Mond is knowledgeable, iba pa rin sya, separate pa rin sya. Being knowledgeable in fashion is very important because you actually carry the trends from the global trend list. That’s important as well, like in the city of Manila where people look up to people who know something about a specific industry. Mond is actually the point-person when it comes to that because you look at his Instagram account and you see the things that really are related to what’s in trend right now. So, he curates and he filters things he sees because he travels a lot. He’s actually able to filter a lot of things already and give it a personal take," the designer adds.
It's another, way trickier matter when you talk "fearless fashion" among men in showbiz, Jerome says. So who exactly wields this hard-to-master flair?
"For me, it's Vice Ganda. Ang fearless yung di nagpapadala sa trend, hindi nagpapadala sa mga sinasabi ng tao," he muses. "Si Vice Ganda kasi, hindi naging uso sa kanya yung fear. Kasi iba kasi yung walang kinakatakutan sa walang takot, di ba? With Vice, wala syang takot kasi he’s made his own trend—na sya talaga, na whatever."
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Photos taken from the Instagram accounts of Jericho Rosales, Jake Cuenca, Raymond Gutierrez, and Vice Ganda