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Opinion

He Said, She Said: Columnists Weigh the Benefits, Drawbacks of Manscaping

HE SAID- NIK WASIK

To trim or not to trim, that is the question, isn’t it gentlemen? It’s the question of the ages (well, I guess not really until recently, but still). Is it right to do a little “manscaping” down there? Or is it acceptable to let it grow out like nature intended?

Gentlemen, let me tell you that even though it may seem like a lot of work (depending on the man), or it may seem dangerous (who’s bright idea was it to let sharp metal mess around down there?), the reward outweighs the risk entirely.

I know there might be guys who think it doesn’t matter, but not only does trimming down there give you a more civilized look, it also allows for a pleasant presentation for your partner.

I’ve never heard anybody, guy or girl, complain about lack of hair with their partners. I’ve also never heard anybody complain about the effort they put into keeping things tidy.

Guys, how much work you have to put into keeping it tidy down there is a matter of preference. Some people like “going Brazilian,” and others enjoy having a little fuzz on their peaches.

Using a razor or a clipper is based on preference, but each has its pros and cons.

Using a clipper allows for a more uniform, careful way to maintain yourself, where a razor will be able to get a closer, smoother shave.

A clipper, however, lowers the risk of cuts or other unpleasant shaving incidents that could normally happen on the face.

A razor, though, when used carefully and methodically, can leave a smooth, pleasant feeling that some people enjoy more than the prickly feeling of short stubble. Remember, friends, these machines were designed to be used on someone’s face.

If you’re going to use a razor, let’s talk about some general practice tips. If you use a razor, for face or body, use one that has three to five blades. The less blades, the more risk of cutting yourself. The more amount of blades, the less amount of pressure you have to apply, though.

Always shave after a hot shower. The shower softens the skin and the hair to allow for a closer, easier shave. Never shave with a dull razor, especially if you’re manscaping. Last I checked razor burn is not attractive.

Use the weight of the razor to do the shaving. Do not press. Shaving is a marathon, not a sprint. The more you press, the more of a chance you have to cut yourself.

Because manscaping is truly a solo affair: the method, the practice and the preference are all about you and how confident you feel doing it. There’s no social standard to go by, so … Go ahead.

Go and shave that lightening bolt in.

Do it.

I dare you.

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SHE SAID – SARAH BETH COLEMAN

At some point in early middle school, during one of those “let’s have a sleepover and talk about all the prepubescent questions and theories that we have” sleepovers, a friend mentioned a thing called “manscaping.”

Being far more skilled in the Internet, and by that I mean being allowed on more than Disney websites, we all wanted to know the details. The unfortunate thing was, beyond the name and a rough understanding that it had something to do with hygiene, we had nothing to go on. And just like that we returned to our usual conversation of how romantic our lives were.

From there, I became so engrossed in my Seventeen Magazine and concerned about my acne and “not beach” body that I didn’t concern myself with anything guys had to do.

Beyond the obvious definition of “controlling and maintaining a hygienic and appealing situation for below-the-belt regions,” I didn’t really comprehend the importance.

But then I was asked my opinion on it. What’s an inexperienced high school sophomore to say to that? I said, “It’s nice.” Not quite the answer the dotting gentleman was looking for, he rephrased the question. “What do you like?”

My face was a shade of red that left most tomatoes jealous, but I followed my blush with a mature and actually intelligent response.

I explained that I was more comfortable knowing that the other person would be comfortable and feel at his best. If you aren’t a fan of dealing with being clean-shaven then just trim. And in all honesty, if someone is getting a glance at your manscaping, that’s probably not what he or she is focusing on.

At the same time, the notion of asking what someone would prefer or likes is a selfless concept. If you’re willing to give up some level of comfort just to make someone else happy, whether that’s manscaping or otherwise, that’s a really good sign of your selflessness and how you value relationships. For me, I view it in a “golden rule” sort of manner, as long as people are comfortable with that. I’m not putting hot wax anywhere near my pants, so I don’t expect you to. (Why would anyone ever think putting a hot substance in such important areas is OK? I just don’t get it).

Also, if you want to talk about gender equality, where is the male version of vajazzling? Why isn’t “Men’s Health” or “Sports Illustrated” talking about “p-glitter” or some equally demeaning attempt to add sparkle or color to things that shouldn’t. Speaking of color, did you know pubic hair dye is a thing? I don’t get it, but maybe manscaping is more fun when what you’re trimming is green.

I think whether you’re into acomoclitism or crazy dyes (because somebody has to like that for there to be a market) what matters mostt is that you’re comfortable with how you feel. Then you’re golden.

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