Manscaping Do's and Don'ts
If you’re reading this, you probably already believe in the value of male grooming. You might not be to the point of dying your pubic hair yet, but you get the basics. You’re on board. None of that means that you’re good at the process. We get questions and hear horror stories every day when it comes to manscaping. In light of that, we have crafted the seven cardinal rules to male grooming that will keep you safe and help you find success in your efforts.
1. Always, Always Trim First
The point of male grooming is to reduce the amount of body hair you have in places where you don’t want it, right? Keeping that in mind, you want a strategy that lets you remove body hair without hurting yourself.
Whether you shave, wax or otherwise, the risk of injury and pain goes down when you trim first. If your hair is too long when you shave, it tugs in the blade and you get tons of cuts. If you’re waxing, long hair gets tangled in the process and doesn’t pull the hair out from a straight angle. That causes a lot more bleeding and skin damage. It’s ugly.
If you trim first, everything is kinder, gentler and a better experience. Plus, trimming is often enough to meet your grooming needs.
2. Tight Underwear Is Your Enemy
This is especially true after a shave, but tight underwear is universally bad after grooming. When you shave, it actually makes it harder for hair to break back through the skin as it grows. This increases the risk of ingrown hairs, and you don’t want those around your genitals or on your ass.
Even if you just go with a trim, the tight underwear pushes on short, wiry hairs. It’s an itchy proposition, and if you’re grooming only to go around with your groin on fire throughout the day, you aren’t gaining anything from your efforts. Just loosen the boxers, and your whole life gets a lot easier.
3. Using the Same Razor for Your Pubes and Face Could Kill You. Really.
It’s time to scare you. Seriously, you should be afraid of cross-contamination. When you shave, you cut yourself, even if you don’t bleed. The razor causes micro-fissures on your skin. It’s why aftershave care is so important. Those micro-fissures are enough to allow bacteria and microbes to get past your skin and cause an infection.
Why does cross-contaminating matter? Most of the bacteria on your skin is harmless. In a lot of ways, it’s good for you. But, the bacteria that thrive around your balls are completely different from the bacteria that thrive on your chin. They are different microbiomes. When you use the same razor for both areas, you introduce potentially harmful bacteria to the region. Combine that with those micro-fissures and you dramatically increase the risk of a staph infection.
You still aren’t scared. Try reading up on staph infection death rate statistics. It’s sobering.
4. Don’t Be Cheap. Use a Fresh Razor
Shaving has tons of amazing benefits. That’s why we do it. That doesn’t change the fact that it’s a fairly barbaric practice. We’re scraping hair off of our bodies with sharp objects. That’s a crazy concept.
What’s crazier is that we can frequently do it without injuring ourselves. Of course, the reason we’re able is that we’ve learned so much about shaving over the years. Of all of the lessons burned into human memory, there is one shaving tip that is the most important. Always use a sharp blade. Dull blades are much more likely to cut you and cause irritation.
We have statistics to back this up. A full 20% of men injure themselves when they shave, and being stingy on changing blades is the common reason. Learn from their pain and have plenty of extra blades on hand.
5. Always Start By Shaving With the Grain
We said trim first, and we’re not contradicting that advice. When your trim is done and you’re ready to shave, your first pass should be with the grain. If you go against the grain from the start when you're shaving your pubes, you’re going to get a lot more resistance on the blade and cut yourself more.
Shave with the grain. If, after that, you still want to try to go closer, you can experiment with going against the grain. It will leave you smooth, but the risk of razor burn will go up a ton. You can decide for yourself if that’s worth it.
6. Moisturize. Don’t Argue. Just Moisturize.
Somehow, even in this modern era, there are guys who believe that moisturizing is somehow girly. This is insane. Moisturizing makes your skin feel good. Why should any guy ever be against that?
You need to moisturize. It’s good for your skin. It makes you itch less. It makes you look more attractive. Most importantly, it reduces the harm you sometimes experience from shaving. Moisturizing is the most important aftershave care step. Please don’t skip it.
7. Use a Mirror to Get Where the Sun Don’t Shine
Our last tip is a little more specialized. We know that you understand the value of getting the hair from your taint and rear end. No matter how much you believe in the cause, shaving these regions is not easy. We get it.
Here’s the trick. Get a handheld mirror. Order one from Amazon right now if you need to. The next time you shave, you’re going to experiment with a few postures (and probably use more than one of them for a complete grooming session). One posture is sitting down. You can use the mirror to see under the balls and other areas that are obscured.
The second posture is squatting over the mirror. It feels awkward at first, but this is the best way to see the ass and taint. If squatting is hard, you can also sit on your knees and over the mirror. Basically, do what it takes to see what you’re doing. Blind guessing will never suffice.
There it is. Those are your seven rules for manscaping. They don’t comprise a complete tutorial, but they cover the problems we see most often. A lot of guys — even veterans in the game — make mistakes that can be prevented by these rules. Learn them well. Experiment for yourself and learn.
You’ll find that we have steered you clear of common problems and elevated your grooming right off the bat. What you do from there is up to you.