Welcome to 2010 on Polka Dot Bride! I’m going to kick off the year with a very special guest, someone who is near and dear to me- Mr Polka Dot!
Mr Polka wrote this post last year and since the festive season is the time when most proposals happen, I thought this was a perfect time to share his words with you. So this is choosing a ring from a guy’s point of view!
So you’ve decided that you’re going to ask that special lady in your life to marry you.
That is going to mean getting an engagement ring. There are a couple of ways to go about doing this. First up is the traditional way, go out and select the ring yourself to surprise her with, or propose and take her with you to pick out the ring she would love.
There are pro’s and cons for both of these methods.
If you really want to surprise her with the bended knee and opening ring box you’re going to have to get it yourself. My best advice for this method is to be observant. If you know more about what her likes and dislikes are in this area you’re more likely to pick something that she is going to scream over and feel wonderful showing off to all her friends.
If she never talks about weddings or wedding rings you may not be able to get a perfect idea of the ring she would love, however you can garner plenty of information from the rest of her jewelery collection. What kind of colour does she like? Is she a gold, white gold or silver girl? Or if she has a lot, what does she wear the most on her hands. Also does she prefer subtle jewelery, or is she into the louder more extravagant items. This will all give you great insight into what to pick out for her.
Now once you have been observing this, my next suggestion would be to find a very helpful jeweler. It will be much easier for if you find a jeweler who will help you through the process of picking out the perfect ring. This may mean going to a few jewelers until you find the right one for you.
The other way of course is to ask the question without the ring and to pick out the ring together. This method of course means you don’t have to worry about getting the right ring on your own. Before you head down this path thinking it’s the easy way however it might be worth gauging from her how she feels about this way. It will require tact on your part to work this out without giving away your intention.
We wouldn’t want you just come out and ask the question with out the ring if she really has her heart set on the question coming with the ring in the box.
Once you’ve decided on a method of getting the ring for her, the next major task for you is the proposal. That my friends is an art of it’s own, however I’m assured that rolling over on the couch, letting off gas and saying ‘how about it babe’ might not be the best way to go.
Today Polka Dot Bride is joined by two of my favourite male skincare experts, Chris and Rick from Australian male grooming store Himage! today the boys share their top tips for keeping the groom looking good.
Tell me about yourself?
We are Chris and Rick from Himage, an online grooming store for men specializing in shaving and skin care products. We currently stock around 400 products from 23 of the worlds leading brands which we distribute from our Sydney and Melbourne offices. We are in our early 30’s, both have corporate-world backgrounds and have had an interest in grooming and business for several years. We met working together in London in 2001 and have remained friends ever since.
What inspired you to set up a web site featuring high end men’s products?
We are both time-poor individuals with busy work and social lives and felt there was an unmet need in the market place for good quality male grooming products delivered to the clients door. The large department stores have limited ranges and often mix male products in with the ladies cosmetic sections which guys are often too embarrassed to visit. We wanted to provide Australian men with a quality site, large range, competitive pricing and free delivery to take the hassle out of meeting their grooming needs.
The Himage Website
What sort of man would you envisage using your products?
We have a great cross-section of clientele. We have the young guys still at school looking to correct skin problems right through to your older gentlemen purchasing anti-ageing products. We try to cater to all affordability levels by providing quality products from the $10 level right through to around $300. Our target guy is one that is too busy to visit department stores on weekends, wants good quality products that are reasonably priced and expects quality service in terms of presentation and speed of delivery. More and more men are starting to take care of their appearance and we think some of the misconceptions about men who are well groomed are starting to disappear.
How do you keep your product fresh and different?
We regularly update the site for various monthly special deals and provide a “Learn” section where guys can understand grooming a little better in simple terms which is regularly added to. We also do Brand features each month to help Australian guys know a little more about some of our international brands.
What inspires you?
We see the market as one that will continue to grow as more and more men open up to the idea that looking good doesn’t mean you are a sissy. It inspires us to get the Himage brand established now so we are well placed to be the site that first comes to mind when Australian men think about buying shave and skin care products. We are also inspired by the feedback emails we are receiving from clients who had no idea about their skin, what to use etc and improvements they have seen in themselves once using the “Learn” section of Himage.
What sets you apart from others?
We see ourselves as offering a boutique shopping experience and pride ourselves on being impressive every step of the way from the first time someone sees the site to the prompt receipt of a beautifully packaged parcel of goods ordered. We don’t want to give away all of our secrets regarding the “Himage experience” but we are finding once people shop with Himage once, they come back for more.
eShave Silver Tip Badger Brush
What is your number one tip for grooms?
Keep your grooming routine simple, a basic cleanse, shave and moisturize works well for most guys. Don’t go trying anything too fancy in the week before your wedding which may result in skin problems on the big day.
How should grooms prepare their skin for the wedding?
In the month leading up to the big day grooms should try and develop a morning and evening, basic and fun, skincare routine. In the morning try and get into the habit of a five step routine of Cleanse, Shave, Tone, Post Shave and Moisturise. Of an evening a quick cleanse, tone & moisturise should be enough to keep skin looking bright and healthy.
Sharps Usual Suspects Kit
What skin care products do you see as essential? What skin care products should grooms pack?
Different skin types require different care routines as outlined in the “Learn” section of our site. All men need to shave and should use a good quality shave cream, soap or gel suitable for their skin type. Other items we think all men (particularly those about to wed) should use or at least try once are Cleansers and Moisturisers.
What are your favourite wedding ideas?
Beach and small, intimate family weddings have been the most enjoyable for us in our experience. Good food, good company in an elegant setting always makes for an enjoyable day. Rick’s wedding on the Sydney Harbor was a special one for the Himage family.
Is there a different quality about Australian grooms?
Having attended weddings in England and America, I think Australian grooms are more relaxed when it comes to the wedding. This can go either way as there is a fine-line between being stress free towards the wedding and leaving it all up to your partner to slave over.
What are the biggest mistakes you see grooms making?
Having both been involved in a couple of weddings the two mistakes we have seen on more than one occasion are the male bridal party wearing ill-fitting suits and the groom having a big night before the wedding day.
Five things a groom must get right?
Suits for himself and his bridal party – make sure they fit all properly if hiring or buying so you all look the part.
Take it easy the night before – you will be allowed out (hopefully) again so don’t be hungover on your wedding day.
Hair – have it cut the week before the wedding to give it time to settle.
Shave – unless you can carry off the designer-stubble look, be clean shaven on the big day.
Listen to your wife – let your wife be the centerpiece of the day, do what she wants & make the first day of the rest of your lives together a great one.
Thank you Chris and Rick for your expert advice on male skincare! Visit the Himage store to see more from Chris and Rick!