Wise Guys: What’s Up with Manscaping?

photo via IMDB

Advice from three of our guy friends. This week they answer the following: “What’s the deal with manscaping? We’re talking both genitals and chests.”

Straight Single Guy (L.A. Chris): I think it’s great that men have taken an interest in personal grooming. Where’s the downside of shearing a chest rug or bisecting a unibrow? And it’s every man’s secret that shaving your pubes makes you look bigger. Of course, like anything, preening can be taken to comical extremes (think tweezed eyebrows, hair stencils, and fake orange tans). But if you look at advertising and celebrities, male models are intricately manscaped, so that’s where a lot of it comes from. Ultimately I think it’s a fad: in another 10 years, bushy pubes, woolly chest hair, and thick mustaches will be all the rage.

Gay Engaged Guy (Joel Derfner, author of Swish): I don’t know, but it doesn’t matter, because manscaping is, for all intents and purposes, dead. Gay men are manscaping less and less each year, which means that in a few years straight men are going to be manscaping less and less each year, and then our national nightmare will be over.

Straight Married Guy (Figleaf): Great question! It’s a great irony to me that, at least in Western Civilization, we don’t think anything of the original “manscaping” — men who shave their faces. For instance, you never hear debates about how shaving makes grown men look “prepubescent” even though technically that’s exactly what it actually does. As for the recent trend in straight men trimming or shaving pubic hair, I think you could make a case that it’s driven, at least a little bit, by the same things that drive women to do so: porn and advertising. The two come together in a recent razor manufacturer’s ad campaign with shaved kiwi fruit and hints about the “optical inch” of penis length that comes from trimming away an inch of pubic hair.

There’s also the point that it just feels nicer being kissed on bare skin than on hair…and, for many partners, it feels nicer kissing bare skin than hair. As for men grooming hair on the rest of the body, I think there are two big reasons. First, because it makes us look younger. Not so much “prepubescent” but, since body hair increases with age, not middle-aged or older. Second, because when it’s long it can be itchy both to ourselves and to our partners. Of course the other side of all that is first that a lot of women and/or men think body hair on men is very sexy, and second that stubble can be even pricklier than if we left well enough alone.

Our “wise guys” are a rotating group of contributors, some of whom wish to remain anonymous and some of whom like the attention. This week’s Gay Engaged Guy is Joel Derfner, author of Swish, and our Straight Married Guy is Figleaf, the guy behind RealAdultSex.com. To ask the guys your own question, click here.

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28 Comments on "Wise Guys: What’s Up with Manscaping?"

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amo 45

Bad smell =see a doctor and no sex !!!.This has nothing to do with pubic hair although i enjoy doing it[manscaping] for a man i can see it better know exactly what i want to keep and remove what feels good against my face, and it’s always is followed by sex .As for me don’t really need any blessed to be a very sparse haired woman.

OK, so I empirically tested masculine shaving. The results: 1. Looks ridiculous. In addition to looking chicken-pocked from razor burn, I’ve got kind of a hairless circle shaved out from the rest of my body hair. 2. It is very, very uncomfortable. I am itchy. My girl and I shaved each other – she’s in better shape than me. Not itchy, looks much better. But I still like her better with a small amount of well-groomed pubic hair than totally bald. Guess I’ve outgrown that (no pun intended). Result: shaving sucks. I’ll never do that again, or ask a girl… Read more »
Yes, I am in my 30s and am lucky enough to have good genes that make me attractive to younger men (under 30), as well as men my own age. Interestingly enough, the younger guys seem the most open about me being “natural”, while my current boyfriend, who is over 40, is the one who is uncomfortable with the hair. I have been asked by lovers why all women aren’t as comfortable with their sexuality as I am. I think that being true to one’s self and finding lovers who “get” that, makes for passionate love-making. Women who feel more… Read more »

its called the generation gap. and like most gaps, it is best when smooth and hair free. guys and girls approx 30 or younger will not even debate this point. hairy is not sexy. if you’re in your mid 30’s, you’re hairier and you don’t get it. it’s ok.

Thank you Madamoiselle L for your wise comments and the important information on the hygienic purpose of pubic hair. I can personally report that the one time I shaved completely (partly out of curiosity and partly because my boyfriend at the time wanted me to), my pubic odor was much more pronounced. I tend to have be very moist, which I consider a good thing (!), but without any hair to capture the moisture, I was sticky and smelly. I shower twice a day, by the way, but the hair helps to keep my genital odors contained. I don’t want… Read more »
Madamoiselle L

Sorry, “never grew” I didn’t understand….I assumed you “never” grew pubic hair.

Everybody has a preference. Just so you aren’t using stencils to make little pictures in your pubes, I’ll consider you an adult. 😉

If you and your man are happy, that’s what’s important. My man actually couldn’t care less. I trim up, and keep it neat for my personal preference. He just kinda goes along, but I couldn’t imagine him taking a razor to his cute furry Kiwi Fruits.

never grew hair there
never grew hair there
johnny, thx for explaining the “filthy” part about growing pubic hair… Madamoiselle L…. i never said, my hair dont grow anymore..i said i never let ’em grow any longer thn half or 1 inch, therefore i obviously dont need a doc…n ok there might b men out thr who like hair bushes on women when going down on them…but i personally believe its not that enjoyable…as someone mentioned, the tongue on bare skin feels much better, n also whn i completely shave ’em off, i feel clean, n tht doesnt mean i m not acting like an adult…besides my man… Read more »