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Does 'Trivago Guy' need a makeover?

By Marnie Hunter, CNN
August 18, 2014 -- Updated 1738 GMT (0138 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • A makeover contest aims to spiff up the disheveled "Trivago Guy"
  • Tim Williams, the actor who stars in Trivago commercials, is open to improvements
  • "Do I need a makeover? No. Do I want one? Kind of, yeah"

(CNN) -- There's probably a belt in this guy's future.

After much discussion and online gnashing of teeth about the disheveled pitchman for travel company Trivago, the Germany-based company has heeded the call for a Trivago Guy makeover.

You know the guy: Rumpled shirt, five o'clock shadow, tousled hair and no belt (Why no belt? many have pondered).

There's a contest under way to find a new outfit for American actor and musician Tim Williams, aka the Trivago Guy. The winner will receive a five-day getaway to Berlin, Germany, to see the filming of a new commercial featuring a spiffed-up Williams.

Just post a photo of an outfit from your closet or a store on the Facebook contest page or via Twitter or Instagram using #trivagoGuy by August 24 to be considered. Feel free to model the outfit yourself. Voting for the winning look begins August 28 on Facebook.

But does Williams, 48, feel like he needs a makeover?

"Why not? I think it's fun, and I would definitely like to have somebody else's opinion on my outfits. And why not let the American public choose?" Williams said. "Do I need a makeover? No. Do I want one? Kind of, yeah."

What he doesn't want, though, is to look like every other slick TV pitchman. Williams' original Trivago look is the work of a European stylist. He tried on a number of outfits and Trivago made the final call.

"I had a belt on at one point, and it just didn't kind of go with the outfit and we scrapped the belt. It's probably one of the best decisions we ever came up with because look what it's created," Williams said.

What it's created, among American fans and critics, is much speculation about this mystery man. Did he just roll in on a red-eye or out of bed or off a bender? Hard to say. And that, it seems, is what has people fascinated.

"It's that 'divorcee who keeps scotch in the glovebox' look," according to one Twitter user who replicated the distinctive look for himself.

"I've decided the ‪#trivagoGuy is what happened when the ‪#TommyBahama guy lost his wife and started smoking lots of pot," said another.

The real guy is based in Berlin, where he recently finished a two-and-a-half year stint playing an American rock star on German soap opera "Gute Zeiten, schlechte Zeiten" ("Good times, bad times").

That role is actually the reason for the semi-shaven, tousled coiffure of the Trivago ad. On the show he had longer hair and a goatee, so he had to retain some of that to be ready for his rock star role, complete with goatee, a week after shooting the ad.

Williams had an early acting role on the "Cosby Show" and he has also appeared on "Law and Order" and on New York stages. He has released an EP called "Temporary Man," and is an avid wearer of belts.

And for those fans who find his rough-and-tumble Trivago look rather fetching, you'll be pleased to know that Williams is single "and loving it."

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