Ladies, when you slope off to the work loos to put your face on ahead of the office Christmas party, check out whether your male colleagues are sneaking off to powder their noses too.
More than a decade since the birth of the “metrosexual male” and the men’s grooming market is exploding.
Not only are guys now comfortable with moisturiser but they now know their scrubs from their serums and have learned the magic of make-up and are not afraid to use it... a little bit.
According to new research by Debenhams (just in time for your Christmas shopping no less) one in 10 men admit they will wear some subtle make-up this festive season with a third planning to slap on a bit of fake tan.
If you work with a lot of thirtysomething men then you should definitely be on the look out for the old guyliner because it is this age group that is most image conscious.
Debenhams claim these chaps are splashing out as much as £100 a month on anti-ageing creams, cosmetics and spa trips and that these uber-groomed guys spend more on maintaining (or achieving) their good looks than men in their twenties and their fifties – I’m guessing Simon Cowell didn’t take part in Debenhams’ survey then.
And men don’t mess about when it comes to their faces, forking out on average £50 for their moisturiser whereas women spend just £11.12.
No wonder the male grooming market is said to be worth a whopping £600m.
As ever we don’t have to look far to see who is driving this trend. It is of course old Goldenballs himself, David Beckham.
The former footballer and global fashion icon was cited as the number one grooming inspiration by men in their thirties, with many admitting they were more likely to buy a product if the father-of-four endorsed it.
In a world where image is everything it is hardly surprising that more and more men are feeling the pressure to look good at all times.
And to look young.
The recent recession saw a spike in the number of older men having cosmetic treatments like fillers and Botox because they feared their age worked against them when competing for jobs.
And, with men’s men like Clive Owen (Lancome) and Hugh Laurie (L’Oreal) happy to endorse blokes’ skincare ranges, there is no longer any stigma attached to fellas taking care of their faces.
The Debenhams survey also revealed that northern men are the most concerned with looking good at the Christmas party. with Newcastle’s males spending the most money and Liverpool and Manchester not far behind.
I am not remotely surprised by the findings of this research.
I am married to a man as attached to his Clinique M Lotion as he is to me and he is living proof of the benefits of a good face cream.
And I also have no problem with blokes sneaking a bit of concealer to disguise the odd blemish.
But I draw the line at men wearing fake tan and foundation. Not unless they can blend it like Beckham that is.