So I spent the weekend poolside with some of my favourite people, many of whom work in the very same industry as bloggers and magazine editors. These folks have extensive social platforms and amazing content that they roll out on the regular, and are incredibly well received. They are always a great source of inspiration and are invaluable sounding boards to refine ideas on how to be better at what we do. How to be more creative, more authentic and how to just be…yourself.
It’s now Monday morning and that’s the thought that is still echoing through my head. How do I be more myself in my work, or at least, how do I share more of myself? I mean, I’ve worked my butt off creating this space, why not use it? Embrace it and flourish within it? Well, I have made a personal pledge to do just that and I’ll tell you why.
One of my favourite parts of doing what I do is stumbling upon people in my home city that follow my content. Some just like my photos on Instagram, and some read every word I type on this very site; but when they stop me on the street to say hi, I adore it. Like any job in life, when you receive positive feedback, that the work you’re doing is strong in someone’s eyes, it makes you feel good. I get it, I’m just a guy online broadcasting photographs and drafting collections of paragraphs explaining his take on menswear and lifestyle. I’m not curing cancer or etching my face on the Mt. Rushmore of menswear, but I am connecting with people I truly want to share with. People I want to be friends with and people I want to one day work alongside and collaborate with. Because of that, I am doing EXACTLY what I want to do. But here’s the thing, a lot of people still don’t know me. They even say it after they meet me, “Oh, you’re different than I expected!” I often meet people who follow my social media feeds that expect me to be more pretentious, or less personable, or even more feminine (yes, I heard that this weekend). And although I’m not obsessed with my public perception in the least, I am now more conscious of ensuring that I’m no frigging mystery either. Likable or not, more of me is going to be shared this summer. Click HERE for a tutorial on how to unfollow me.
My name is Daniel and I’m kind of a weird guy. Yeah, I meant that when I declared that in sentence #1. I can be both idiosyncratic and mildly OCD, to be truthful. Evidence of that? I get my hair cut twice a week. Yes, twice. And yes, it’s because I like the look of it, but more so, I just love the feeling. Every man on earth shares that feeling when they leave the barbershop or hairstylist, you feel f*cking bad-ass. I simply don’t diet myself from that feeling for weeks on end. It’s my time to unwind, catch up on emails and treat myself. Twice a week may be a stretch but I encourage you guys to find an affordable and creative hair studio to escape to every 10 days to stay fresh and well-groomed. For me, it instills a confidence that allows me to do better–both in my professional and personal lives. When you like how you feel, you’re going to do good things.
My spot is Civello Salon & Spa by Aveda at 269 Queen Street West in Toronto. Queen West is still one of my favourite little hoods in the city, so the location alone is perfect for me. I have my 11AM cut with stylist Dylan Sit, then poke around the shops and usually come home with at least one shopping bag. I remember my first visit at Civello: I was pretty nervous as I was so used to my old-school barbershop, and the routine of getting “the usual” in no more than 10-15 minutes. Civello is a whole different experience that is pretty hard to match, really. I’m a pretty easy guy to please, I think, but when your haircut now involves a mini massage, exfoliating shampoo, mini facial and a coffee throughout, I’m in. Most importantly I got the best cut I have ever gotten. For real. Sitting in the chair of a stylist with a NYFW resume ain’t no joke, and she did an amazing job releasing the heaviness of my hair, and texturing it like I have never had done before. For the first time in my life I am walking out the door without a drop of hair product, simply because my hair now fits my head—and my lifestyle—to a T. Summer is here and that means random workouts, random dips in the pool, and now having the luxury to not be concerned with restyling my hair is a nice freedom to have. Easy breezy.
Ok so part 2 of the Aveda experience is beyond the cut. I’ve been introduced to the Invati Men Collection of hair solutions designed exclusively for strengthening and preserving men’s hair. I’ve been pretty forthcoming in my posts lately of not just my age but my dedication to start taking care of myself a little better now that my twenties are in the rear-view mirror. OK so here’s the deal with the Invati collection: 2 steps, the first being the Invati Men Exfoliating Shampoo, enriched with wintergreen-derived salicylic acid to unclog pores in the scalp. Step 2 is the Invati Men Scalp Revitalizer which you simply massage into your hair on a daily basis after you shower. The formula is made up of a blend of Ayurvedic herbs, including ginseng and certified organic turmeric. It helps prevent breakage, instantly thickening the hair, and in turn, repressing hair thinning and loss. You’re damn right I expect to cruise the waters of the caribbean in a boat when I’m 55, with my salt & pepper hair blowing in the wind. They say you inherit your hair genes from your mother’s side, which leaves me in the clear, but we all know that could just be an old wives’ tale. I’d much rather be proactive by using a simple system concocted of 98% natural ingredients to preserve and care for my hair.
They say your looks and health are supposed to decline as the years go by. Personally, I feel better than I ever have. I’m taking care of myself and prepping myself for the years to come. For all of you Toronto guys and gals, give Civello a call and book an appointment to get the experience. Use promo code ‘DANIEL20’ for $20 off your cut or colour service. Let me know how it goes!