For the promotions of his forthcoming film Lootera,actor Ranveer Singh has made over 12 appearances in less than a fortnight. That he has managed to look effortlessly stylish is not a mere coincidence. Hours of detailed planning and fittings have gone into making the actor look suave and sophisticated,in everything from designer suits to premium casual wear. Hes been sporting brands such as Zegna,Burberry,Paul Smith,Etro,Cue by Rohit Gandhi and Rahul Khanna,along with Diesel,Tommy Hilfiger,Superdry and Zara,all thanks to the machinations of a professional stylist.
Singh figures among a growing list of young male actors,who are increasingly paying attention to the cut of their suits and fit of their shirts. While their female counterparts have for years been dressed by the likes of Dior,Gucci and Sabyasachi,Bollywoods leading men have so far been relegated to bringing out their Armani and Tom Ford suits for formal red carpet events only. Whether its for premieres or promotional appearances,Singh,Ranbir Kapoor,Imran Khan,Arjun Kapoor,Varun Dhawan,Ayushmann Khurrana and Sushant Singh Rajput are hiring stylists to stay ahead in the sartorial rat race. Thanks to social media,visibility and public scrutiny has shot up exponentially. Theyre not only being seen all the time,but their appearances are also being commented upon, says celebrity stylist Nitasha Gaurav,who lends her expertise to Singh,Rajput and Arjun Kapoor.
With their every move being dissected and every look being analysed on fashion websites,Facebook and Twitter,the pressure to look good is increasing. Whereas,earlier,actors were inaccessible and a limited number of pictures were seen in the media,today,even if they go to the movies or do a radio interview they are photographed, says designer and stylist Kunal Rawal,who makes sure his clients Ranbir Kapoor,Varun Dhawan and Arjun Kapoor are seen at their spiffiest best before a camera. Because,as Gaurav points out,styling is inextricably linked to image management. Its a visual medium and what you wear is ultimately what you are perceived as. Endorsements depend on what values are attributed to you. Before people have met you or spoken to you,theyve seen your pictures and formed assumptions based on your appearance, she says.
And since every photo opportunity is an occasion to further ambition and image,these actors are recognising the need to create the right impression. Theyre tuned in to the latest trends,are style conscious and willing to experiment. Actors today are far more fearless and confident. They know that their personal sense of style is capable of setting them apart from the rest, says Rawal. They also possess the unique ability to take a trend and make it their own. So,while Singh decides to team a Zegna suit with Kolhapuri chappals and a hat,Khan opts to dress up a staid suit with a colourful pocket square and bright socks.
Cashing in on the potential of this current crop of trendsetters are brands looking to expand outreach and profile . The promotional tours and events leading up to a films release lend to a large number of media appearances. Viewers,who emulate the actors,get an opportunity to see them as themselves and not just in character. The details are splashed instantly across social media websites. While it does not affect our business directly,it does help in generating a lot of buzz, says Deepika Gehani,creative director,Genesis Colors,whose brands Etro and Paul Smith have been sported by some of Bollywoods most bright and fashionable.
The opportunity to tap in to a more aspirational market is immense. For most brands,India is still a developing fashion market and its important to get their clothes out there. These appearances help them in getting exposure and creating awareness, says Rawal.