by Mr. Spruce
There are some common misconceptions about manscaping, in that it equates to baby-smooth skin that's only suitable for romance novel cover models, David Beckham and porn stars. These days, however, manscaping is not an all-out war on hair, but rather a grooming tool to help you look and feel your best.
You may be surprised to discover that it's not all about vanity, either. Manscaping can improve cleanliness by reducing the heat produced by body hair, ward off rashes associated with exercise and stop uncomfortable tugging, pulling and chafing.
Whether you just want to pare down the strays peaking over your collar or tame a jungle of back carpet, here's a look at the do's and don'ts of manscaping.
Manscaping has a lot more to do with trimming, than it does with shaving. What you're aiming for is a neat look, so getting rid of the stragglers is the name of the game. Depending on the amount of hair, a beard trimmer is the way to go. If you have to fight your way through a forest, you can get an electric trimmer with a guard and adjustable length settings.
If you only want to dip your toes into manscaping, make your chest and neck the priority. A dapper shirt just doesn’t have quite the same appeal if the hair on your chest meets your hairline. Plus, if you work out at the gym, why not clear a space to show off the effort?
Use your trimmer to thin chest hair out, but make sure you don't go as far creating a five o'clock shadow. Excessive neck hair is best dealt with by a visit to a professional waxer. Once you get into the swing of it, the hair will grow back softer and thinner than before.
Depending on how much of your life you spend with your shirt off and how often you want to embrace manscaping, there's not much point in having a neatly trimmed chest, if your back grows wild. For a well-groomed look, you really need to do both. If you decide to go the whole way, all you need to do is make a waxing or trimming appointment once every six weeks for your back, shoulders and neck.
Popping down to the chemist for some hair removal cream might seem easy, but often ends in disaster. You could end up with uneven lines, break out in a rash or accidentally apply chemicals to regions that aren't going to thank you for it. If you have too much hair to benefit from general trimming, leave it to the professionals.
Even if your beard is immaculately maintained or your goatee is symmetrical perfection, errant nose hair can be a game-changer for your overall look. Use trimming scissors in front of a well-lit mirror and gently remove it, ensuring you sterilise the scissors after use.
Your eyebrows shouldn't be overly manicured, unless you're going for a certain look, so steer clear of perfection. All you need to do for simple grooming, is pluck the hair from the middle of your brow and comb your brows up, in order to trim any out-of-control growth.
Disposable razors have no place in manscaping, even if you do want to go bare and bare all. At best, the hair will simply clog the blades and the endeavour will take hours. At worst, you'll be left with prickly patches and severe razor burn. For more info on alternatives to disposables, check out this great post from the archives.
At the end of the day, there are only two golden rules to successful manscaping, namely; either wax or trim for best results, and most importantly, you were blessed with body hair, so you might as well own it!
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Mr. Spruce aka Andy. One half of Worthy & Spruce. Blogging about all things gentlemanly, and many things not. Tired but tireless dad, business dude, consumer of coffee, and deliverer of timely quips.
by Mr. Spruce
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