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Skrr-sexual: the new male sex symbol is gangly & unkept

Forget the abdominal musculature and obsessive grooming of yesteryear - the skrr-sexual of 2019 upends ideals of male beauty

13 January 2019 - 00:07
Rapper Travis Scott is current king of the skrr-sexuals.
Rapper Travis Scott is current king of the skrr-sexuals.
Image: John Shearer/WireImage/Getty Images

Psst! Hey there, fella. We know it's the beginning of a new year and you're getting ready for the annual migration to Virgin Active. You tell people and yourself that you're hitting the gym to get healthy. The word wellness may even get thrown in there.

Between us, though, we know the real reason you're about to dust off that gym membership: you want to take another stab at turning yourself into a sex symbol. We've all seen Chris Evans and his ilk, shirtless and drenched in body oil, enough times to know that there are few mating calls more alluring than abs. If you could couple those with a menacing pair of guns (biceps) and a back that even Atlas wouldn't shrug at, the world would be yours.

This is a wish list common among spornosexuals (a portmanteau of "sport", "porn" and "sexual"), a class of man as concerned with face cream as he is with acquiring cheese-grating abs.

For years now, the spornosexual has dominated the mainstream conception of the ideal man. But before you rush off to the gym to clang and bang, bear this in mind: the end is nigh for the spornosexual. In his place a new aesthetic is rising, one with a very different mantra. Welcome to the age of the skrr-sexual.

GOODBYE VIRILE PEACOCK

Understanding the name requires a quick pop culture tutorial. If you've ever listened to trap music you'll have undoubtedly heard the ad-lib skrr-skrr. As a term it was first popularised by rap trio Migos. What it meant when they first started using it is anyone's guess, but "skrr-skrr" has become a noun, a word denoting a certain type of man who can easily be distinguished by his appearance and whose outlook is on a completely different side of the spectrum.

Your garden variety spornosexual embodies the idea of ostentatious vanity. He tries hard to look good and wants you to know that. His shoes stay clean, his clothes hug his musculature like a shipwreck survivor hanging on to a floating piece of debris, and his bathroom is filled with products emblazoned with the word "grooming". In essence he is what you get when a peacock gets the word "virility" stuck in its head.

The skrr-sexual is gangly and carefully unkempt. He wears plaits à la A$AP Rocky, or rocks uncombed hair and clothes reminiscent of a particularly fashionable homeless person

The skrr-sexual is none of those things. Born out of a movement to upend what is traditionally thought of when discussing male beauty, he is gangly and carefully unkempt. He wears plaits à la A$AP Rocky, or rocks uncombed hair and clothes reminiscent of a particularly fashionable homeless person.

He is re-establishing the connection between cool and nonchalant. The 1980s and early '90s are his stylistic inspiration, but infused with a kind of chaotic middle finger to the word neat. He is drenched in tattoos, none of which are tribal, and he sees no problem with having a fanny pack on his hip.

Rapper Travis Scott is current king of the skrr-sexuals, if ever you needed a reference point - but 6lack, A$AP Rocky and Lil Uzi Vert are key members of his royal court.

Beware though: not everyone can be a skrr-sexual. Like a lot of things coming out of younger generations these days, there is a strict "slegs jeug" (young only) criterion for those looking to join. If you've crossed 30, it is best you stick to what you already know.

Skrr-sexuality is still in the nascent stages of its world domination and thus few of its exponents are old enough to show us old folks how to do it without repeating the Ed Hardy disaster of the mid '00s.

That said, if you are savvy enough, and have a young un to coach you, then you have no need to bother with that gym membership. Instead, you can take the aggressive masculinity out of your mating call and replace it with something that croons with the sweet sound of millennial angst.

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