Turn your swag on, lads

Gérard Depardieu, Jacques Brel, Serge Gainsbourg, Vincent Cassel… Ok, so their names are a bit of a giveaway, but from a photo alone, you’d know these guys were French.

This is not to say however that looking French unconditionally goes hand in hand with looking like these men. Nor does it mean that you’ll never come across a Depardieu-Brel-Gainsbourg-Cassel type outside of France. But these men do represent a certain type of male which seems to be particularly à la mode in France.

Unkempt eyebrows and deeply engraved bags envelope comparatively small eyes. Skin tends to be so thick it approaches the consistency of plasticine and, though pulled tight over high cheek bones, subsequently cascades into a pug-like excess of the stuff. All four boast a rather spectacular nose, offset by an unruly thatch of hair. It’s a look made complete by the steady pulsating of cigarette smoke, rippling from the corner of their mouths. Rugged, gnarled; none of them is what you’d call conventionally attractive.

But women are renowned for their ability to see way beyond a man’s unconventional appearance if that same man’s talented. I remember watching an interview with Burt Bacharach in which he self-effacingly joked that without his musical talent he wouldn’t have had much success with the ladies.

But the love bestowed on these French anti-sex symbols transcends an admiration for their genius. Ladies swoon over them as if they figured high in the list of _Hottest Male Celebs_, somewhere between James Franco and Jake Gyllenhaal say. And not just any ladies. Drop-dead-gorgeous ones.

Though the film Gainsbourg, about Serge himself, opens with a girl accusing the young protagonist of being “too ugly”, it then defiantly proceeds to recount Gainsbourg’s relationships with three stunning women. First up: the sultry Juliette Gréco, played by none other than Chanel model Anna Mouglalis. Next up is Brigitte Bardot, the incredibly beautiful blonde bombshell. And finally, Jane Birkin, the exquisite gamine.

So boys, if you’re feeling a little dejected at the moment, fear not. Take some inspiration from those French fiends. Embrace those imperfections, for they are not imperfections at all but the very key to your success. Don’t resent the brawl from which you raised your head with a crooked nose. Raise that head high. And raise that aquiline beauty of a hooter even higher. Forget about Botox. What you _really_ want is excess skin. Rivulets of excess skin oozing into cavernous cheeks… And drag on those cigarettes like you’ve never dragged on them before.

Then get yourself to France and turn yo’ swag _on_.

Comments (5)

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