Top 5 survival skills everyone should have regardless of their gender

Patriarchy, misogyny and sexism. Words like these are talked about, detested and discussed nowadays as a welcome change in our day to day dialogues.

Even then, people talking the most about these forget to actually evidently ‘practice’ the hatred towards these words. We somewhat subconsciously associate some skills with the prowess a specific gender is meant to have.

But often, these are just basic survival skills everyone should learn.

What were once parallel streams for men and women are now converging. As millennials stumble, claw, or sail their way into adulthood, the lists of gender-specific skills every man (or woman) should know are giving way to something new — a unisex form of adulting.


This is an interesting skill to have. Cooking is considered an art and anybody who masters cooking can master the way to get into someone’s heart. In our culture, cooking is commonly associated with the act of the women and men who know how to cook in our society are considered ‘extraordinary’.

In reality, it is somewhere in the middle of a preference and a survival skill. A ‘must-know’ if you’re anyone above the age of twenty. Because men, you can’t always expect to be handed a sandwich while staring at the TV for no good reason. And women, the same goes for you. Knowing how to cook makes life easier, instantly.

Paperwork (Paying taxes, official work, banking, money management) 

This task here rather contains a vast area of real-life scenarios. If you come from a Bengali family, you’d have seen dads handling taxations, bank papers or any legal paperwork for that matter whereas our mothers were never really into it.

But in reality, every adult regardless of their gender should at least understand how these intricacies work. For example, if you decide to open a bank account for your savings and don’t know how banks work because you were never taught about it just because you are a girl is a glaring example of how our society has characterized tasks based on gender.

Learn how tax slabs work, to handle money, the basics of legal paperwork etc. They will always come in handy whenever you’re past the age of twenty, doesn’t matter if you’re a man or a woman. 

Household chores

Even though the social concept of women-only chores is changing with time but many still hold a perception that household chores are best done by the women of the house.

Cleaning your own mess should be what we’re taught instead. A guy can know how to clean, wash the dishes, help his wife get things done and still be the manliest man. A girl can know how to clean and wash and still be a corporate leader.


Men in our society aren’t as much exposed to self-care as our women are. To girls, self-care looks like looking after our physical and mental health.

But to the boys, it is rather a vague concept in our society since it is so feminized in our country. The part of self-care that includes looking after your skin, your external appearance, your hair- is so feminized in our country that boys don’t even understand the necessity of taking care of their skin, feet, hands and hair.

Self-care doesn’t understand gender. It is only concerned with the body you go through so much with. Learn to take care of yourself. Cut that cucumber into circles and bust all that stress under your eyes.


Driving is a life-saving skill, both at home and abroad that could save you a lot of time, energy and dependency. The steering doesn’t have a brain and so the car operates better with whoever decides to become a safe driver. Don’t give in to the stereotypes, learn to drive safely. 

Things to keep in mind before getting your next suit

A good suit is an essential piece of clothing that every man need to have in their collection. Whether it’s for work, a wedding or any other formal event, having the right suit is indispensable in making the right impression. But picking out or tailoring ones next suit can be a daunting task for anyone. The fabric, size, style, colour, tailoring and budget all play their part in making the right suit. And for anyone who’s relatively inexperienced or getting their first suit on their own, it can be quite a headache. And the last thing any man wants is to not look good in their new suit.  

So here are a few things men should keep in mind before getting their next suit.

Having a clear idea of the desired suit

Buying a new suit doesn’t start in the store, it starts in one’s head. Deciding on a two-piece or a three-piece suit, the colour, material, style or even buying it readymade or buying the cloth and tailoring it, is something one should have an idea off beforehand. Each option has its own merits and it’s on the buyer to decide which route they are going to take. So a clear vision is the first step in getting there. 

Correctly matching the trousers with the coat

One of the biggest rookie mistakes is buying a black coat to match with a black pair of trousers.  A suit is a matching coat and trousers made from the same type of fabric and colour. Merely matching two different coat and trousers, no matter how similar they are, is not going to work as well as one would think it would. 

Sticking to the basics

When it comes to choosing the colour of suits, one can never go wrong with the classics. Sticking to the timeless black, grey, brown and navy blue color for suits is never a bad idea.  And pairing them with the right shirt and tie is a sure-fire way to get the best out of the suit. Checkered and patterned suits are blowing up right now on Instagram and Facebook and that opens up the door to new possibilities. We do recommend losing the pinstripes as it does seem a bit dated.

 Getting the right size

Unlike most other clothing suits don’t generally come in small, medium or large, rather they are fitted to the buyer’s measurements. So getting the correct measurement is crucial for anyone looking for a new suit, especially for the shoulders, torso and height. One of the most common missteps people make when getting a new suit is buying one that’s too big.

Pro tip: The suit should hug the wearer’s frame as closely as possible without it being tight.   

Detailing of the lapel, buttons and hemming the trousers   

Getting the right lapel style and the number of buttons are some of the finer detail but they are just as important. Lapel types are generally two; the notch style which is more casual and versatile and the more formal peak style. As for buttons, the buyer can go for two buttons to three buttons on the torso depending on their choice. Another detail to notice is whether the coat sleeves or trouser length is correct and hemming them if they are longer. Also when it comes to trousers, opting for flat front pants instead of the pleated pant are commendable. 

A good tailor can make all the difference

It’s always wise to have a trusty tailor on hand for any altering or adjustment that may be required for a suit. And a good tailor can help you get the most out of a suit even if it’s a bit off or if it gets damaged. Most suits are made to be alterable and even a lower-priced suit, in the hands of a skilful tailor can make it look and feel much better.

Getting a suit is a rite of passage for many men and hopefully, the pointers above will help in getting the perfect suit next time around.  

6 factors to look out for while buying sneakers (and our recommendations)

Shoes are essential for making a long-lasting impression of yourself wherever you commute. But that isn’t the sole purpose of sneakers and shoes. Sometimes, sandals just don’t cut it for casual activities, especially in Dhaka. And so, here are the essentials when you want to go shoe shopping for Dhaka.

Vulcanized Soles

Shoes go through a lot of strenuous use on the streets of Dhaka. From running to the leap of faith for catching a bus, the soles take the beating that no man can endure in his lifetime. Imagine getting stomped on at least a thousand times a day. Which is why a vulcanized soles are essential. A vulcanized sole is extra durable for most conditions in Dhaka, and these have become pretty standard in Dhaka’s market by now.

Made with breathable materials

Amateur shoemakers don’t often recognize this essential part of making shoes, which is why local fashion designers often screw up this part for making shoes. They’ll charge you a hefty premium for its design and color, but the insides of the shoes might give up within a week. This is why shoes like Converse and Vans are widely used, and the reason why brands like Nike and Adidas value air ventilation inside the shoe.

Midsole type

First, recognize the kind of feet you have. Understanding that, decide on your type of shoe. Neutral-arched feet: if your feet are neither overly arched nor flat, look for shoes with firm midsoles and straight to semi-curved lasts. Flat feet: people with flat feet benefit from a straight last and motion control shoes to help stabilize your feet. High-arched feet: high arches can contribute to joint pain and strain on muscles, so look for cushioned soles for your convenience.


Try to find the perfect balance of weight for your shoes, especially sneakers. Don’t pick shoes that drag your feet down like it’ll drag you down to hell, and don’t buy shoes that are lighter than a feather. Lighter shoes might compromise quality or durability for weight savings. On that note, wearing heavy basketball shoes are a no-go if you expect to do a lot of walking – save those Jordans for actual occasions (that actually isn’t playing basketball, for most people).


Look for shoes that are actually stitched, not glued on like a toy made by a five year old. Good quality shoes need to be stitched together, or they fall apart quite easily. The shoes should be double stitched, and triple stitched shoes are even better.

Lace protection

Few people pay attention to this aspect, but this is one of the most important aspects of buying a shoes. If the lace holes aren’t reinforced with metal, there’s a chance that strain and abuse from Dhaka might rip off the openings, leaving you with the most unappealing loafer, ever.
These are some recommended shoes that are more than appropriate for travelling in Dhaka, just because of how well made they are.
What shoes are you wearing in Dhaka? Have a recommendation for others? Feel like we should included more items in our list? Let us know!

Sheroes of Tomorrow: a celebration of women in business

How would you define a hero?

To many, a hero is a cape-wearing, eye-lasering or lasso-of-truth-wielding super-human. But when you live in a society where half the population is struggling for equal pay or an opportunity to break through the glass ceiling or struggling to fulfil their ambitions of building something of their own, it’s hard not to celebrate those who overcome these struggles as nothing short of heroes.

Sheroes of Today organized the perfect tribute to these women of valour, who have taken it upon themselves to create their own business, to propel themselves towards achieving their goals. Co-hosted by Cookups and Jete Chao, the event took place on March 23, 2018 in Cityscape Tower on a lovely spring afternoon.

The floor was teeming with people of all ages who had come to experience the passion and creativity of various artists and entrepreneurs. There were numerous stalls filled with artwork, stationery and varied merchandise, but just we entered, we were drawn to the delicious smelling arrangement of various home cooked food.

Many home cooks who started their business through the online platform Cookups came to showcase their offerings and serve their customers in person. The range of items were overwhelming; brilliant smelling pot-pies, kebabs, pretzels, cookies, jell-Os, tarts pizza and drinks. One of these home cooks was Sharmin, who started working through Cookups to sell her food and is now quite happy after having quit her job to become a home-maker and mother. “My brother urged me to sell my home-cooked food and I am so grateful to him that he did. It’s been six months since I started and I am quite happy with where my business stands now.” said a gleeful Sharmin.

Serving next to her was Sharmeen, who had quit her job at an IT firm as a computer engineer to raise her three children. She looked just as happy to talk about her business as much as she was to serve her customers who were waiting in a line to try her smoked shish-kebabs.

Looking beside her we found a middle-aged lady busily serving desserts. She is a Filipino, ex medical laboratory scientific officer, MLSO, who left work 7 years ago to raise her children who are all grown up now and with Cookups she is now able to retreat back to a life where she can work for herself again.

Speaking to the women doing business via cookups, it was evident that the platform was providing a gateway to housewives for becoming a self-earning individual through their culinary talents. And it really isn’t a surprise knowing the amazing home-cooks we have in every household of this country.

We took our little snacks in our hands and walked across the hall to the various stalls by artists sharing their work on a canvas or in print and on stationery and t-shits. Everyone had their own significant style that spoke more about the artists and sometimes about what the art represented. There was a t-shirt that had an orna drawn over it and the tag said, “orna koi?”, something I found to be particularly delightful. We spoke with Humairah Shams, an artist and co-founder of Made with Love, who told us the purpose of the business – “We want to add little bit of our love into our products and share it with all the people who purchase them. We have difficult days and we want to put something beautiful in the everyday things we use.”

We spoke to the owner of Her Stories who had taken upon the task of creating an amazing book full of stories of female heroes of our country painted by talented female artists from Bangladesh. The books in the stall were accompanied by tote bags and posters of a lady with 8 hands doing various types of work at once that said, “Amar ma kaaj kore”.

While mentioning homemade products again, we must speak of Soaperstar, a homemade toiletries venture. The lovely little white cart was filled with items ranging from aromatic blocks of soap, shampoos and even beard-oils.  All the products are handmade by the owner, Shehna, who told us how her products contained no harmful chemicals or preservatives and were all vegan and healthy to use.

Other stalls included Numinous, a pop-culture themed merchandise business, who had their first meet and greet with customers through this event; Art for the Soul, Hulo Kraft, 6 Yard Story and many other fresh women entrepreneurs, looking to make a name for themselves.

We left the event with the impression that the passion of these artists, entrepreneurs and dreamers resonated through the products they sold. We also marveled at the warmth in the atmosphere, where women of all ages came together under one roof to celebrate themselves.