Typically I’m an old school guy. For me, a man should still be a little rough around the edges. He doesn’t have to express his feelings or wear any jewelry. And I think it’s ok if a man is a little messy, and he can have some grease or dirt under his fingernails. To put it plainly, I don’t think a man should be prettier than a woman.
So what about manscaping? Does an old school guy like me recommend that men trim or shave areas of their body that don’t require it? The short answer is “absolutely yes.”
THE HISTORY OF THE MANSCAPE
When this term “manscape” first became popular, it was all about guys trimming around their genital areas. It was the nineties and women were starting to trim around their vaginas. Before that, women were hairy down there. Performing oral sex on a woman in the eighties and before would commonly leave you with pubic hair in your mouth or stuck in your teeth. And the look of a vagina was strongly influenced by its hairy configuration.
By the mid-nineties, trimming around the vagina was becoming popular and it eventually became commonplace. I personally liked the change, but a lot of guys didn’t. They liked the natural look of a hairy vagina. Forward a decade or so and most women were not only trimming but completely shaving their genital area. They were getting Brazilian waxes and having laser surgery for permanent hair removal. At some point during all of this female genital hair reduction, the manscape was born.
Once the trimmed vagina became accepted and liked, it didn’t take long for men and women to observe the hairy status of the male genitals. In true guy fashion, we didn’t pay attention to our hair. We let it grow wild. Then when guys started to do a little trimming and noticed that it made them look better, cleaner, and bigger, the manscape was born.
PORN MADE IT COMMON
By the mid-nineties, everyone had access to pornography. Lots of it. Porn is fantasy. Lighting and camera angles make the women look hotter and the men look bigger. This is what we all want. By this time in history, male porn stars were trimming the hair around their penises and shaving down their balls, and it made them look sexually better and their cocks bigger.
Guys look at porn. A lot of it. Guys also want their penises to be and look as big as they can, and these porn stars were looking good with their manscaping. With the desire for a bigger-looking penis, millions of men started trimming their genital areas.
MANSCAPING: IT’S NOT JUST FOR PENISES ANYMORE
It’s been many years since the invention of the term “manscape” and we all now know that we should trim our genital areas and do so. But what about other areas of the body? Should we manscape them too? The answer is an overwhelming “yes.”
When men get older (meaning over 30), they start to grow hair in strange places. Hair starts growing out of our noses and on our ears and other places. Men have been trimming their nose and ear hair for at least several decades, since way before the invention of the word “manscape”. So if you are having trouble justifying doing actual manscaping, remember that your grandfather probably trimmed his nose hairs and plucked at least some long ear hairs, which IS manscaping.
Regardless of the era you are from, we all manscape our noses and ears. But what other places can we trim or shave?
WHAT NEEDS MANSCAPING?
Here’s a list of areas that you MIGHT need to manscape:
Forearms – Look at your forearms. Are they much hairier than the rest of your upper body? If so, you may want to trim them with a super low shaver setting. You could shave them but that may be too feminine. Remember, you are a man. Some hair is ok.
Back of the neck – Your barber or hair stylist will do this when you get a haircut, but you may need to shave it off yourself in between visits if you don’t go often. It’s best to shave with your trimmer with no setting.
Chest – Ok, so if you are a younger Tom Selleck, maybe you shouldn’t shave your chest. But everyone else probably should. This is one of those areas where it’s ok to have hair, but you want it to look good.
How is your chest hair? Is it patchy? Does it weirdly grow too far up or down? Everyone is different, so experiment a little. Maybe try shaping it up by shaving what is too high and too low. Or trim it so it’s all the same short length. You could see what it looks like if you shave it all. It’s ok if the shaved look isn’t for you. It’s hair. It’ll grow back. If you do something you don’t like, wear a shirt all the time until it grows back to how you want it.
Front of the neck – Is hair growing up and out from the top of your t-shirt and on the way to your Adam’s apple? Shave or trim that shit.
Back – Most men don’t have much back hair, but if you do, consider doing something with it. It may be hard to shave or trim, but if it’s only mild, then figure it out and do it. If your back hair is extreme, you could choose the option of getting it waxed off. That is expensive and painful, though, so it may not be worth it. You should do something, though, to make it look better. Unless you like being half bear, and that’s ok too.
Lower Back – Most of us don’t have much back hair, but almost all of us have hair that grows at the small of the back. It looks stupid. Shave it down.
Legs – This may be a big decision for you. Leg hair usually doesn’t look too bad, so this is purely optional. If it’s just a little too long, though, trim it all down with a very low setting. It’ll take some practice as the legs are a big area to trim and the knees are boney. Some guys will completely shave their legs. That’s too much for my taste, but if you are a bodybuilder or a competitive cyclist, then go for it. You have an excuse.
Buttocks – So ass hair is definitely a manly thing, and I’m not at all suggesting that men should have a smooth, hairless ass. You may be a little older now and are noticing that the hair on your ass is kinda long. It’s ok. You can trim it.
Eyebrows – Sporting a uni-brow? Got some Groucho Marx bush thing going on? You don’t have to live with that shit. Trim it up and pluck the middle. You should have two eyebrows. Not one.
Rogue hair or odd patch – It doesn’t matter where it’s growing, you don’t have to live with some weird hair growth just because you’re a man. Pluck or trim it.
With these suggestions, I’m in no way saying you should become some metrosexual version of yourself. You are a man and should stay that way. We do live in a time, though, where we are cleaner and more detailed. It’s good to be able to adapt. Don’t worry. You can still be all the man you are while not having any potentially offensive body hair.