Manscaping is a new term to me and most of my contemporaries, but it's been going on for quite a while. Various professions require it, but it's become a common element in contemporary grooming trends. Now you will know where all the hair went.


                                 A WOMAN'S VIEW ON MANSCAPING                                                                              


    As a woman emancipated within the last few years, coming into the dating population north of 40 has been one revelation after another. While I have picked up a few things on my own along the way, it would seem that I have lived under a rock with regard to others.

     While still married, I noticed that my husband had shaved his groin area completely. I asked him why he would do that (my over active imagination visualizing nicks etc.),  his answer was simple and ludicrous, "It’s cooler." It was the dead of winter in New York City, in a bedroom with a heavy draft coming through the windows, and he needed to be cooler. I told him I hated the stubble and asked if he would go au natural. His answer, "I like it better this way." So now the man obsessed with every hair on top of his head, careless about the hair from his nose, gave me beard burn from a whole different 5 o’ clock shadow.


     There are some scenarios which would make manscaping a sensible choice. (For those who are new to the term, it refers the removal of hair from a man’s body. It can mean everything, but typically not arms, underarms, or legs.)  Manscaping is understandable if a man has been called sweaterback his whole life, or if his chest hair comes up to his throat looking like an extension of his beard. His barber suggesting he shave a runway on the back of his neck to camouflage his lush back growth is also reasonable justification. Another reason is the incidence of the male gluteus maximus obscured by a caul. My first boyfriend suffered from all of the above. He also shed through his clothes and onto linens all year round. When a man is this hirsute, he will sweat more and be itchy to rest your head on. These are all reasons which a female would probably be sympathetic, thankful, and even offer assistance in ameliorating this given male dilemma.


    The typical male is not at this extreme end of the bell curve. He may have some chest hair or not, and hopefully being an adult male, there should be hair on his nether regions. I find visually tracing that line down his stomach very sexy. Many females including myself, find chest hair also to be magnetically masculine...G rated visual testosterone. Women (with a few exceptions), don’t have this characteristic so it makes our differences that much more pronounced. We have one more thing to play with. No chest hair is common in many men genetically which has it's erotic upside as well. Yet when everything is shaved, there is a strange  pre-pubescent look, almost  effeminately smooth when it’s first done. Rarely has it been done a couple of hours before, hence the inevitable stubble problem.


    For grown women that haven’t dated for a while, this is de rigueur for grooming with the 20-40 set, metrosexuals, and many "regular" guys in their 40’s and up. There also exists every level of trimmer. Men who just clip themselves into a groomed state. I’ve read there are several reasons this convention has developed not including my ex’s. One belief is that when that area is shaved, the man appears better endowed. Another cause for inspiration is the porn industry. The studs tend to be clean shaven. Obviously a man could infer that when properly manscaped, he could equal his mentors in terms in performance, size, and attracting females. My favorite reason, is  historical and international origin. In certain cultures, it has been done for centuries to avoid lice.


     At least some women must be asking themselves; "How do men go about doing this?" "The Forty Year Old Virgin" seemed to have trouble with waxing, advised by his male buddies. I don’t think most men are capable of handling the heat, or the ripping out of their hair by the root anywhere on their bodies, let alone their jewels. How about chemical depilatories? Imagine a man applying a cream that could dissolve hair, to his private parts.  I know at least one. For the more affluent, there is always laser. Laser is probably a good option for the back and butt, yet what about the borders? Hope the laser doctor is good at blending. Last, the method of choice, and the one most manscapers use, is shaving. It’s recommended by the "Ask Men" website, for the more sensitive masculine regions. They give strong warnings against waxing and cream depilatories. Yet they neglect to mention that in shaving, lies the peril of another use for styptic pencils and a new place for ingrown hairs. If you notice the omnipresent male scratching move from back to front, it may just be his hair growing in.


    Some women actually prefer their lovers fully "scaped". Some men such as competition athletes, models etc., do this to varying degrees for their professions. As for myself, I think most men are fine just the way they are, and shaving should be left for the face, and if necessary the top of the head. However if your man begins to manscape against your wishes, check his briefcase for condoms.


FYI: The development of one extreme trend usually invites an opposite reactive trend. Beware of men belonging to Bear Clubs. If it comes to a choice...manscaping, hands down.


                                                           On the Bell Curve                              Bear Club

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