The Washington Post

Pinterest: No boys allowed? New pinning sites for men

It’s like Pinterest has cooties. The social bookmarking site, which allows users to “pin” images of things they find interesting or inspiring — say, recipes, nail art, or wedding veils — has always had a devoted female following.

(Screenshot, MANteresting.)

The stereotypical interests listed above are like that for a reason — Pinterest gets the most attention for being “Tumblr for ladiez,” or the perfect place to plan your wedding. But many of the nails on the front of MANteresting are no less of a gender stereotype: Power tools, pulled pork, sneakers, tractors, cleavage.

The sites don’t explicitly say that a real man can’t enjoy baking a cupcake, or that a proper lady can’t ride a motorcycle (though a vintage Vespa, as in “Roman Holiday,” is probably acceptable), but for the boys’ sites, at least, it’s implied in their mottoes: “A mint of manly things,” and “Interesting. Man. Things.” To even look at a Web site where weddings are discussed would be an immediate compromise of one’s manliness, it seems.

But for all of the rugged masculinity that the sites exude, when you look a little deeper you’ll find that the dude-Pinners are really no different from their female counterparts. They’re all shopping, and cultivating an image of a fantasy life — one where, with all the time and money in the world, a man could use his vintage shaving accessories each day and drink the finest scotch, while wearing expensive leather loafers. Not a far cry from hair color, sangria, and heels. Many of the posts — like a recipe for a vegetarian sandwich — would be at home on either site.

So dudes can keep nailing and tacking, and women can keep pinning, but when it comes down to it, we’re all working on the same imaginary wall — so let’s cool it with the gender stereotyping. If girl cooties are contagious, the gentleman pinners of the Internet have already caught them.

More on Pinterest:

Pinterest: Beyond ‘crack for women’

Petula Dvorak: Addicted to Pinterest

Ann Romney joins Pinterest

Maura Judkis covers culture, food, and the arts for the Weekend section and Going Out Guide.


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