Semi-annoying fact: Most women prefer a man who is well-dressed and well-groomed—from head to toe. So while you might not be ready to slip into a pair of ultra-tight skinny jeans, there’s one bandwagon you should probably jump on: manscaping.
“We’ve seen more and more men coming in for hair removal at the request of a woman,” says Claudia Duran, Master Esthetician at Grooming Lounge in Washington, D.C.
Not sure where to begin? Duran shared these four expert tips.
If you’re using an electric razor, you can do your manscaping before or after you shower, because you’re only trimming the hair. If you’re using a manual razor, it’s best to shave power-shower.
1. Choose a winning tool
When it comes to shaving the hair on your chest and parts farther south, Duran recommends an electric razor. That’ll remove all the bulk, and you’ll avoid any chance of ingrown hairs, razor burn or irritation. But if you prefer to go completely bare—or your girlfriend prefers you to go completely bare—you can use the same manual razor you shave your face with. Just clean the blade with a Q-tip and some alcohol afterwards. Or, you know what, use a different razor.
2. Pick the right time
If you’re using an electric razor, you can do your manscaping before or after you shower, because you’re only trimming the hair, not completely removing it. On the other hand, if you’re going with the all-bare, manual-razor approach, it’s best to shave post-shower. “The heat from the shower softens the hair and opens your follicles,” explains Duran. “This allows for a closer, smoother shave.”
Consider this option your last resort…
3. Lather up… or don’t
If you’re using an electric razor, you don’t need any shaving cream. If you’re using a manual razor, you do. Pick one with a calming ingredient like aloe, chamomile or eucalyptus, says Duran. And don’t use one with alcohol because it could dry your skin. Another tip: don’t put on so much shaving cream that you can’t see where the blade is going. Take it one small section at a time and always shave with the grain to avoid ingrown hairs and irritation.
4. Repeat often
If you’re manscaping with an electric razor, you can shave as frequently or infrequently as you feel necessary to keep everything trimmed and clean. With a manual razor, Duran recommends shaving every three days or so. Use a moisturizer afterwards to help soothe your skin and ensure there’s no painful mess. And if you feel like manscaping daily with a manual razor, go right ahead. But that’s a lot of work, unless you’re training to be an Olympic swimmer—or shooting a, um, movie.