Kiwi Men Worried About Their Looks: Survey

28 May 2010, 12:47PM

Kiwi men are worried about their looks with hair loss, dandruff and weight gain their three biggest concerns according to a new trans-Tasman study.

The Head & Shoulders Hair Retain Survey showed that more than a quarter of men (29%) said they were worried about having dandruff and just over a quarter (26%) were concerned about losing their hair.

The results also show that New Zealand males were anxious about their waistlines as well as their hairlines! Just under two thirds of Kiwi men (63%) were concerned about putting on weight, compared to just less than half of their Australian counterparts.

Auckland psychologist Sara Chatwin says having hair is closely aligned with many masculine characteristics so when men lose their hair, their self-esteem often plummets.

“Many men define themselves by the way they wear their hair. This may be due to traditional beliefs that suggest hair is associated with virility, social status, strength and youth,” says Chatwin.

“When their hair diminishes or gets dandruff (that is perceived as dirty) men may feel less virile, weak, older and generally less attractive,” she says.

Chatwin says with this in mind men will often go “the extra distance” to ensure their hair is full, dandruff flake free and healthy looking.

“These days men are taking more time to look after their personal grooming habits and hair maintenance is part of that package,” she says.

This may be the case for Kiwi men but when it comes to appearances it seems Australian men aren’t nearly as alarmed about certain aspects of their appearance! Only 13% of Australian men worried about dandruff and just 18% said they were apprehensive about hair loss.

Kiwi respondents said that when it came to wrinkles they were not overly concerned, with only 17% saying it was an issue for them; excess hair was even less of a worry with 13% of Kiwi men saying being overly hairy upset them.

Interestingly Kiwi women were also more concerned about men’s hair than any other appearance issues. Eight out of 10 Kiwi women said dandruff on a man’s shoulders was more of a turn-off than thinning hair! Six out of 10 women surveyed also said that unkempt hair on men was a sign of laziness.

Nearly half (47%) of Kiwi women thought men with a full head of hair are generally more attractive compared to 44% of Australian women.

When it came to males Kiwi women were generally less concerned withbaldness just 15% said bald patches were the first thing they noticed about a man, compared to 22% of Australian women.

Similarly hair was not considered a strong predictor of success with just 12% and 13% of Kiwi and Australian women respectively saying men with a full head of hair tend to be more successful.

The survey was commissioned by Head & Shoulders to launch its new Hair Retain for Men shampoo. The specially formulated product works to reduce dandruff flakes from the first wash but also smoothes the scalp, slows down hair fall due to breakage and provides hair care and protection.