Body hair, the subject of much debate – do the fairer sex find it attractive and manly or is it a serious turn off. We’ll never have an answer in truth, because everyone is different. However, the real question you should be answering is – what do you I want? It’s all down to personal preference, unless you’re a world class cyclist where a lack of body hair delivers a technical advantage, if you feel better with it – keep it, better without it – remove it.
Interestingly, research released by electric shave brand Braun in September revealed that 62% of men ‘manscape’ their body hair. 42% spend more time body grooming than 10 years ago, while 27% of those who manscape say it has made them more popular with the opposite sex.
For those of you who choose to ‘manscape’ you have 5 options: shave, trim, wax, hair removal cream or laser.
This is good solution for immediate affect, with a tool you probably already have in your bathroom – a wet razor. The Gillette Body Razor is a great option, we reviewed it earlier this year here. One issue though is re-growth, if you’re happy to shave regularly don’t worry – but hair will re-surface within a few days, as it does on your face. It’s better to shave after showering when the hair is easily cut, and with a shave gel – so you can see what you’re doing.
A favoured method by most – you can easily, and safely trim excessive body hair down to almost nothing. It’s quick and convenient, with brands such as the aforementioned Braun producing products like the Braun cruZer6 Body Groomer – which is designed specifically for this sort of issue. To make things even easier we asked Braun Style Director Fabio Vivan to provide some top tips to keep body hair in check:
- If you want to maintain a well manscaped body, up-keep is important. Get into the habit of trimming body hair every 7-10 days.
- Grooming sensitive areas can be tricky and you have to be patient. When taming hair around armpits, shoulder blades and the groin area, start by using a body trimmer on a high setting. Continue with a lower setting until you’re happy with the result.
- Completely removing hair on your body, particularly the chest area can have many benefits; making the abs, six-pack and stomach appear more defined. To achieve hairlessness on any part of your body, start by using a trimmer and finish using a razor with shaving foam. Pull skin tight and use short strokes working with and not against the direction of the hair. Gently wash off any shaving foam and moisturise to minimise skin irritation.
- The best time to body groom is in the shower or bath. The warm water opens up pores and wet hair is easier to manage.
- After-care is important in maintaining healthy skin and minimising any skin irritation. Keep skin hydrated post-grooming with aloe vera based skincare and avoid the use of alcohol-based aftershaves as these can change the PH balance in your skin.
Always touted as a painful alternative – well this is some what of a myth. It can be painful if you hair is overly lengthy but you can always trim this first (not too short).
If your local salon is a too intimidating, female only environment then try a Parissa home waxing solution – designed specifically for men it’s quick and easy, and can be done in your own bathroom. All you need to do it heat the wax in a microwave, smear on, tear off (against the direction of hair growth) or try the Parissa wax strips which have wax pre-applied.
Hair Removal Cream
Another reasonable option, for convenience and at home ease of use. Be careful not to leave the cream on the skin for too long or it will burn. The whole affair is messy, and it’s not always easy to see where the cream lies but the results are good when complete coverage is achieved. Try Nad’s for Men Hair Removal Cream. Apply for around 10 minutes (read the instructions for exact times), then scrape off cream and hair with the supplied applicator.
Laser Hair Removal
We actually tested this on behalf of a cosmetic surgery group for review on Ape to Gentleman, and while the hair density of our test Ape was reduced it was nowhere near completely gone. The treatment was expensive, and painful. Others may have better results, we’d love to hear any feedback?
To conclude; there are a variety of options out there – all of which serve a purpose. Remember to follow any of the above treatments with a good post-shave treatment. It’s important to remember though – body hair is your personal preference, there’s no right or wrong.