The Real Reason We Don't Hear From Fabio Anymore

If you know anything about romance novels or butter substitutes, you'll have bumped into the name Fabio at least once. The Italian supermodel became a staple of pop culture during the 1990s — until an ill-fated run-in with a goose during a promotional roller coaster ride helped bring his popularity to a grinding halt. Suddenly Fabio was the butt of a series of jokes and from then on, the public never really looked at him quite the same again. But just because we haven't heard much from Fabio since his popularity took a literal nose dive doesn't mean he's been idle.

So what exactly has he been up to over the last two decades, and why haven't we seen much of him?

He was becoming a U.S. citizen

One of the reasons he's been out of the spotlight is that he's been busy studying for one of the biggest tests in his life. In March 2016, CNN reported that Fabio became a U.S. citizen. In order to qualify, the 57-year-old model was required to be a legal resident for five years or more, learn more about the nation's history and government than the average American probably knows, and show "an attachment to the principles and ideals of the U.S. Constitution."

Fabio released a statement through his agency (via CNN) saying, "This is one of the happiest days of my life... America is still the greatest country on earth. There is no such thing as an Italian dream or an English dream but the American dream is alive and well."

He tried being a writer — and failed

It's really not all that shocking that a man who became famous for working as a cover model for romance novels would decide to pen a few himself. After all, someone who looks like he just walked out of a steamy Harlequin Romance novel should have no trouble contributing beautiful love stories to the genre, right? Well...not exactly.

Take Viking, a fantasy novel starring a gorgeous hunk — obviosuly based on the writer. In a scathing review by Smart B**ches, Trashy Books, we learn the story has Not-Fabio venturing back to the days of the Vikings and effectively putting the entire Scandinavian culture on a diet. On top of that, the character marries a woman who looks like his girlfriend but is much better because she's content to stay at home and have his kids. If you crave cringe-worthy misogyny, you'll probably be a fan.

His appearance on America's Next Top Model got mixed reviews

During Cycle 7 of the popular fashion and modeling reality TV show America's Next Top Model, Fabio featured in the guest star role of male model to the aspiring contestants. The theme was (obviously) romance novels, with each model posing with Fabio for their own cover. While the shots definitely showcase the fact that he's still got it in the looks department, the fact that he was almost three times as old as some of the models also gave it a bit of a gross-factor that made it hard for some to accept.

He's busy looking for "Mrs. Fabio"

What's even harder than coping with the high standards of continued physical perfection? For Fabio, it's finding Mrs. Right. According to Fabio, the woman who came closest to fitting the bill was a 19-year-old model named Jennifer with whom he had a relationship with at age 23. "She had the biggest heart, was always there, was caring and loving," he told The Washington Post. "But I was too young and too wild." He let Jennifer get away, and he's regretted it ever since.

So what is Fabio looking for in a woman? Well, in order to share his "amazing life," she has to have everything going for her as well. "She has to be in the same position [in life]. I don't want to carry somebody else's suitcase. I don't want to carry somebody else's baggage."

He's focused on maintaining his good looks

When you're known for being the definition of male perfection, you may find yourself feeling the pressure to keep up your looks. In Fabio's case, he seems determined to hold onto his handsome looks for as long as possible. No "dad body" for this Italian hunk! When asked how he maintains his fit body, Fabio shared with The Washington Post that he avoids food like cheese and sweets, and well as foods that are fried.

Fabio compares the body to a car, saying, "If you fill it up with 83 octane, your car is going to be a slouch. But if you put in race fuel, even a quarter of a tank, your car is going to have amazing performance." He also spends hours exercising, including frequent dirt bike motorcycle rides. "[It's] an amazing, amazing workout. People don't realize that when you dirt bike with a motorcycle you can lose up to four to six pounds in four hours!"

If you're wondering how Fabio keeps his hair looking romance novel cover ready, the model shared that he takes multivitamins and eats "high-quality protein."

He wen't back to commercials

As much as we miss hearing him say, "I can't believe it's not butter!" we have to believe it was destiny that brought us Fabio as an Old Spice spokesman.

After all, Old Spice has spent years developing it's signature ad campaigns featuring mainly muscular men in cheesy, over-the-top commercials. As someone who's admitted to not taking himself too seriously, the fun commercials seemed practically tailor-made for Fabio. Although judging by the response to the Adweek article about his Old Spice commercials, not everyone is a fan.

What's next nor Fabio?

Since becoming a U.S. citizen, Fabio has already made his opinions known on American political issues — and he's also rubbing shoulders with politicians. Fabio has made his support of President Trump well-known, as well as his desire to be involved in some way. Maybe we'll start to see him in a whole new, more serious light if he keeps on this road. If not, we can probably count on Fabio to continue to pursue avenues that impress upon us how handsome he is, and that he's still very much on the market.