Thato “TeeKay” Mahapa is a menswear and lifestyle blogger and a fourth-year Wits LLB student. The 23-year-old started his blog, The Bearded Muse, in 2016, which focuses on menswear, grooming, and covers lifestyle content such as events, food and design. Mahapa was selected as the 2017 GQ (magazine) Best Dressed Reader, and has collaborated with brands such as Spier and Kurt Geiger, and Europa Art.

 How do you introduce yourself?

Well, I have a few nicknames but I usually introduce myself as Thato.

Tell us more about your blog? What makes it stand out?

My blog is a space that serves as creative inspiration for the aspiring stylish gent. I cover menswear and lifestyle mainly and what makes it different is that everything is from my point of view. I have creative control over everything you see on the blog; from the styling, creative direction, and writing. I don’t have content contributors or anything like that.

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Do you think any dude with “swag” can create a valuable blog or brand?

Short answer is no. It’s not only about “swag”. (Maybe you need to define swag for me?) But the biggest thing is to be able to monetise your style; that means that you have to run your brand like a business. You need to be the model, creative director, accountant, copywriter, CEO, etc. all at once. It’s not the easiest thing in the world. If you’re not running your brand like that or at least similar, you’ll struggle to grow it.

What wakes up every day besides your alarm?

Nothing wakes me up quicker than a new brief! But jokes aside, it’s the constant pursuit of wanting to improve myself that wakes me up everyday!

Which brands have you collaborated with?

TopmanEuropa ArtJohnny WalkerAbsolut Elyx, Carrera Sunglasses, Spier WinesOld KhakiEmporio Armani, to name a few.

 What’s your winning formula?

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Hardwork, a positive mindset/aura, consistency and trusting the process.

 What’s next for you?

Well, my next move is diversifying the kind of content that I’m creating, and improving the quality of the work the I produce at the moment. Thats what I have full control over.

What’s your routine to stay looking fresh?

Haircut, eyebrow threading and masking twice a week.

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Do you remember your very first cologne?

My very first scent was Mont Blanc. I don't remember the name because I was fairly young.

My brother got it for me as a gift while he was staying in London.

What's your number ONE grooming product and why?

This is an extremely difficult question but I'll have to go with cologne. You can get away with a lot if

you have a great scent!

Is there such thing as a perfect guy?

Nope. Everyone has their shortcoming, BUT you might be perfect for someone.

If we had to put you in BOX – what would you remain as besides a blogger?

A man of culture and character.

Grand, grand, what do you think is Manbox?

Off the cuff, a box containing manly stuff.

Manbox relieved Thato's grrr this Monday! TeeKay is a Manbox member - what are you waiting for? Click here to join manbox and stay fresh!

Salute!

Anele@Manbox