The trouble with stubble

IT'S NOT for that one Devdas scene or to acquire that authentic bhai look. Bollywood heroes are all sporting stubble as a matter of style these days. According to glam photographer Daboo Ratnani, the clean-shaven look is completely out now.



"Messy and rugged is in. It looks more manly and adds attitude," he says. But experts add that not everyone can sport stubble. While an 'ulta shave' suits Abhishek Bachchan, Hrithik Roshan and Shreyas Talpade, Shah Rukh and Aamir Khan should come clean, say style pundits.

Actor Ashmit Patel is one of those who's always maintained a stubble. "It's also because my characters in upcoming films like The Flag and Toss require me to keep it," says Ashmit. It's a nicely shaped beard, he clarifies.

Meanwhile, Abhishek Bachchan's new look is evoking mixed reactions from the fashion frat. "Abhishek needs all the help he can get on grooming," says Prasad Bidapa.

"I think he looks more masculine with stubble," counters model Ritu Mazumdar. She adds that "Kunal Kapoor can carry off a beard as well as long hair really well."

Watch out for him in the forthcoming Aaja Nachle. According to Ashmit, Hrithik tops the list of hot 'n' happening stubbled men.

The Indian superhero has also apparently grown a moustache for Ashutosh Gowarikar's Jodha-Akbar. SRK fans, meanwhile, are in total agreement that their hero must always be clean-shaven.

"When I saw him at an awards function recently, with grey hair and the trace of a beard, it suddenly seemed like he's growing old. I want him to take it off," says actress Anu Prabhakar.

In fact, she prefers all men to be clean shaven. "A moustache is fine, but a stubble smacks of being unkempt and lazy," she says. Ritu prefers Tusshar Kapoor and Vivek Oberoi without hair on their faces. "Saif Ali Khan with a beard is a total no-no. It's fine for a one-off 'Langda Tyagi' look, but otherwise he should keep his shaving gel close at hand," says Ritu.

Men who want to keep their stubble have to master some style tips though. "Stubble gives the jawline more definition . But it's not for everybody," says Prasad. "A stubble can pass off as trendy when it is well-groomed. You can't just stop shaving and say it's stylish. The actor has to be very confident of sporting that rough, yet handsome image," he says.

Daboo adds, "Guys with wheatish to fair complexions can sport stubble. It's not for the dark-skinned . You'll rarely see Ajay Devgan with facial hair. Even if he does, it'll just be a shadow."

Stubble is certainly a hot style even among Bollywood newbies: look at Mohit Ahlawat in RGV Ke Sholay and Rishi Kapoor's son Ranbir in his debut film, Saawariyan. But Prasad insists, "The minute Himesh Reshammiya acquired stubble, everyone else should have taken it off!"


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