Chocolate boy looks are passe. Now it's time to sport a stubble and get all the girls swoon over you. Today rugged looks not only rule the silver screen, but even the small screen. From the glamour laced world of entertainment to the man on the street, everyone wants the macho look.
Telly heartthrobs are now sporting the five o'clock shadow. Members of the stubbled brigade include: Barun Sobti in Iss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon
?, Arhaan Behl
in Mann Kee Awaaz Pratigya
, Kushal Tandon in Ek Hazaaron Mein Meri Behna Hain,
Gurmeet Choudhary in Punar Vivah — Zindagi Milegi Dobara
, Jay Bhanushali
in Kairee: Rishta Khatta Meetha,
Harshad Chopra in Dil Se Di Dua... Saubhagyavati Bhav
?, Anas Rashid in Diya Aur Baati Hum
, Vivan D'sena in Madhubala — Ek Ishq Ek Junoon
, Kunal Karan Kapoor of Na Bole Tum Na Maine Kuch Kaha,
Ashish Sharma in Rab Se Sohna Isshq, Sameer Soni
in Parichay — Nayee Zindagi Kay Sapno Ka
, Siddharth Shukla in Balika Vadhu — Kacchi Umar ke Pakke Rishte a
nd Avinesh Rekhi in Chhal-Sheh Aur Maat.
Stubbles ensure lots of starry-eyed appreciation from female fans. "Kushal and Barun have always sported a stubble in theirs show, and yet they are very popular among girls. It all depends on the personality of the actor and what suits him. Girls love the unkempt look on men, which is why the stars go for it," says Siddharth P Malhotara
, creative director of Ek Hazaaron Mein Meri Behna Hain.
Agrees producer Sudhir Sharma of Na Bole Tum Na Maine Kuch Kaha, "Unkempt look can be attractive too. It depends on the actor and how he carries it. Karan who is a crime reporter in my show, had to go with a stubble as this look supports his character."
"Few men look good with stubble and that gives them more attitude. While a bearded might be not be appreciated much, a stubble is never a problem and doesn't need much looking after," says producer Bhairavi Raichura of Chhal-Sheh Aur Maat.
So are the actors themselves comfortable sporting a stubble on screen? "I don a rugged look in my show as it was the requirement of my character. And girls love my new look. To maintain the stubble, I shave in the night," shares actor Gurmeet Choudhary. Actor Vivian D'sena too, loves his "unkempt look. A little stubble suits me. In a clean look I am told that I look like a school boy. Audiences love my new look. As an actor, I need to like my look and only then can I convince the audience about my look. To maintain the look I need to trim and maintain my beard on daily basis."
In the frothy world of telly soaps, it's important for the male protagonists to strike a chord with their female audience who comprise a significant chunk of viewers. So, if sporting a rugged and stubbled look make our small screen heartthrobs more droolworthy, and garner more views for their shows, then the real 'close shave' can wait.