I realized the other day that there are some online resources that I have used over the past few years that have really helped me acclimate to living in the male role in society that others might also find helpful. So I decided I should share them here. There’s a lot of mystery out in the FTM world about men’s fashion, especially when it comes to suits and dress shirts as well as basic male grooming, like shaving and skin care. Basically, anything you need an answer to about living as a male in modern society has been covered by these sites. They are not transgender sites. They are geared towards cis-gender males, but nothing about them is exclusive to that sect of society in my opinion and I think the owners of the sites probably would welcome visitors of all flavors regardless of natal birth history.
So, here is my list of resources that I subscribe to on the daily and enjoy learning from:
- Art of Manliness.
There really isn’t anything on this site that Brett McKay hasn’t covered when it comes to being manly. The articles are interesting and fun to read, educational not just for men but for anyone interested in history and life in general. His podcasts are always at the top of my playlist and always well done. Everything about this site is top notch. He does advertise for some products to fund the site, but it’s minimal and totally optional as to whether you make any purchases. He also sells some of his own branded products like t shirts and coffee mugs, but again, that is totally optional to purchase. For a free site, this is my go-to for great information about old school manliness without all of the bravado and machismo. Just good, old fashioned common sense and decency here. Brett’s goal with Art of Manliness was to create a site that offered men information that would generally be passed down from father to son or from grandfather to grandson, but was missing from most young men’s upbringings in modern day. I think he does a fantastic job of that and I find the information helpful, fun and interesting.
Check it out here: www.artofmanliness.com
2. Gentleman’s Gazette:
If men’s clothing styles and sizing stumps you and you wonder where to find out more about how to be a well dress gentleman, than the Gentleman’s Gazette is a great place to start. Raphael Schneider, the founder, is a dapper fellow from Germany who is all about how to look your best as a gentleman. He will not guide you wrong, though I must say I find some of his opinions and style ideas not to my liking. But, if you want to learn how to wear a tuxedo or spot a well made suit in a vintage store, or what kinds of shoes to wear for what occasion, he has the answers. He does a lot of nice, fairly short (about 15 minute), videos where he models different clothing and answers a lot of questions about styles to choose from. He talks about everything from ties and how to tie them, shoes, socks, hats, sunglasses, jewelry, watches, sweaters, shirts, underwear, etc.
Check it out here at: www.gentlemansgazette.com
3. The Modest Man:
If you’re a shorter guy, and especially a thinner shorter guy, The Modest Man is a great resource for you. Brock, the founder, is a low-key young man who became frustrated with trying to find clothes that fit men under 5’8″ and started The Modest Man to help other shorter guys find clothes that fit their smaller frames. He has a nice video blog where he discusses where to find shoes that fit, watches that don’t look ridiculous on a smaller wrist, shirts that are not too long, etc. His site is clean and easy to navigate and he has some nice free downloads that are very helpful for smaller guys. He covers everything from skincare to tailoring, so definitely check this site out if you’re, like many FTM guys, a little vertically challenged. I’m 5’2″, wear a women’s size 8 shoe and have very small bone structure, so Brock has helped me quite a bit in finding clothes and jewelry that doesn’t make me look like I’m wearing my big brother’s hand-me-downs. Unfortunately, I’m not thin by anyone’s standards so a lot of the clothes he recommends don’t fit me, but regardless, he’s given me a lot of pointers that were extremely useful.
Check Brock out at: www.themodestman.com
If you get a good vibe from any of these sites I highly recommend subscribing to their newsletters and receiving updates from them. It took me a while to get in the habit of doing that and I was always trying to remember where I had read some great tidbit of information. Once I subscribed, they all stuck in my memory banks much better and I never missed an interesting article or video either. I’ve been following all three of these sites for over a year now and I can tell you that all three of these men are professional and sincere in their desire to help others, while making a living off of their sites. They all push products that they like in a gentle, low impact way, but none of them bully or badmouth anyone or anything. If you’re looking for top notch, quality information without a lot of hype and bravado, then any of these sites will fit the bill. I recommend them all, but if I had to pick just one, it would be Art of Manliness for over-all information on being a man. Brett does talk about clothes some and has great information, but it isn’t his main focus. If you want fashion information only, then either of the other two are great sources.
Why didn’t I mention any FTM sites on here? The truth is, I haven’t found them to be that useful for me personally. They are usually geared towards much younger guys than me (I’m 55 now) and tend to be very trendy. I prefer classic styling and old fashioned information. There are some really good sites run by FTM guys, geared towards FTM guys, but honestly, I don’t follow them because they don’t have a lot to offer me. I didn’t grow up with a father and never had any kind of male influence in my life that could teach me things that I’ve always wanted to know. My brother taught me how to tie a tie a long time ago thankfully, or I wouldn’t know how to do that, but otherwise, he’s really not been much good for male role modeling. I really wanted to know the kinds of things my father would have taught me about being a boy/man in society and I think between these three sites, I get that and I’d like you to have access to them as well.
So, to quote Brett McKay from Art of Manliness, until next time, “Stay manly” and enjoy being a guy.