Dandy & Dapper
Do all shirts come with cheap plastic stays these days? I remember my dad used to have some beautiful metal (maybe silver) ones. At Hermes, where I get most of my ties, they showed me scarves not stays. Any idea if anyone makes these any more?
Mr Dandy: No! That's exactly the point. You're not your dad, dude. Plus, it's a hassle to have to remember to take them out before cleaning. I purposely take mine out for a less uptight look, which is why I'm guessing you'll get a totally different answer from Dapper.
Mr Dapper: How ridiculous, Dandy. Of course a shirt made for collar stays, also known as collar bones or stiffeners, should be worn with them in. They keep collars straight and neat, as they should, and are preferable to glued interlining, in my humble opinion. Only my button-downs are tailored without. Collar stays are generally sold in pairs and a one-size-fits-all length. You'll find them, obviously, at good shirt purveyors such as Thomas Pink (Pacific Place, Admiralty, tel: 2155 9021; www.thomaspink.com); I'm partial to its mother-of-pearl style (HK$480), but it also has them in brass (HK$300), striped stainless steel (HK$480) and silver (HK$900). As they are not visible when inserted, the material is a personal choice, much like underwear (which should never be seen in public). If you prefer silver, jewellers can assist. Tiffany & Co's 1837 collection offers collar stays in sterling silver (HK$660; Pacific Place, tel: 2918 9992; www.tiffany.com). Links of London's Collar Bones come in the grid or washing instructions styles (HK$690; Pacific Place, tel: 2918 9727; www.linksoflondon. com). Prior to purchase, double-check that they fit as they do come in different sizes. Thank you, sir, for restoring a modicum of taste to our disposable society.
How do I subtly get my husband to go for 'bacne' exfoliation? I know he's self-conscious when we go swimming, but he's not really the men's grooming type.
Mr Dapper: My dear lady, sweet though the thought might be, your effort is akin to your husband buying you a slimming treatment. If you must, be gentle with his fragile ego, but direct. No one likes to feel manipulated (except during a massage). Non-metrosexuals are more comfortable in men's barbershops and spas, such as Gentlemen's Tonic (The Landmark, Central, tel: 2525 2455; www.gentlemenstonic.com). Book him the exfoliating back tone and tonic (HK$650), back tone and tonic and express facial (HK$1,000), or the full body scrub (HK$850).
Mr Dandy: What are you talking about, Dapper? A great body scrub is like a massage with extras. Our reader should turn it into a date. Many luxury hotel spas have couples rooms, such as the Sanctuary Suite at the Landmark Mandarin Oriental Spa, with tons of treatments to choose from (110 minutes, HK$5,900 and up; The Landmark, tel: 2132 0011; www.mandarinoriental.com). The Grand Hyatt's Plateau Spa has rooms designed for treatments such as the Relaxing Couple Journey, which starts with a lemon sugar body polish (two hours, HK$4,000; 1 Harbour Road, Wan Chai, tel: 2584 7688; www.hyatt.com). Chuan Man's World at Chuan Spa offers back exfoliation followed by a massage and a facial (75 minutes, HK$1,045; Langham Place Hotel, Mong Kok, tel: 3552 3510; www.chuanspa.com.hk). The Peninsula's menu offers a back, face and scalp massage with volcanic stones, which includes a deep-cleansing back exfoliation (HK$2,000 for two hours; Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2696 6682; www.peninsula.com). If that doesn't work, bait him with beer! Sense of Touch has Cheers to Beers (two hours, HK$1,650; 1/F, 52 D'Aguilar Street, Central, tel: 2526 6918; www.senseoftouch.com.hk), a treatment that starts with a warming, relaxing dark ale bath before a barley scrub, then a deep tissue massage.