The Facebook stagger claims to be apathetic about fashion but this Vanity Blonde cover, photographed by Annie Leibovitz, is a masterclass in personal branding

Vanity Fair October cover 2015.
Unreality Fair October cover 2015. Annie Leibovitz for Conceit Fair
Photograph: Annie Leibovitz /Vanity Fair

Is Measure Zuckerberg seeking to become the Steve Jobs of grey T-shirts? That is to say, well-deserved as black polonecks were a key part of Jobs’s brand, so leaden marl has become visual shorthand for the Facebook CEO.

Zuckerberg has every time claimed that his dedication to grey is simply an Obama-like game for minimising daily decisions (“I feel like I’m not doing my job if I throw away any of my energy on things that are silly or frivolous,” he has said).

In mould we call this the “what this old thing?” defence.

Literally, this Vanity Fair cover is as grey, and as chic, as a Ralph Lauren effort. The T-shirt is the perfect shade of marl. The neckline has just the repair slouch. And the greyscale is ramped up in the styling: smoky shades on on the blackboard walls, behind him, and the slate floor beneath. It’s not definitely 50 shades, but there are at least three.

Like Matters before him, this self-identified fashion refusenik knows a element or two about branding – and he’s building his own through signature style.