Random Asides

Body Hair and Shaving, Part 2

So, last month I ranted about the requirements for women to purge their bodies of all hair. Now, aparently, it’s the guys’ turn.

Guys are practically awash with all sorts of unsightly hair. And I’m not just talking about ears and knuckles. A market niche made to order!
Phillips Norelco’s shaveeverywhere is a very entertaining website along the lines of Ms. Dewey. (You didn’t know about Ms. Dewey? Well, whatever you do, don’t ask her about ho’s.)

Norelco’s pitchman, Gary, explains how much the razor has done for him. Specifically, he promises what all good supliments, lotions, and other products for men have been promising for hundreds of years. It promises to make your dick look bigger. (Actually, what Gary says is that shaving will create an “extra optical inch.” He also clearly implies you’ll get laid more if you shave.)

Is this pseudoscience? Or just wishful thinking and clever marketing?
Is there a difference?

Make sure you check out “the basics” for the chance to ask Gary Questions. And watch out when he sits down in that director’s chair!


Bug_girl has a PhD in Entomology, and is a pointy-headed former academic living in Ohio. She is obsessed with insects, but otherwise perfectly normal. Really! If you want a daily stream of cool info about bugs, follow her Facebook page or find her on Twitter.

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  1. Well, I've been shaved in a non-standard location once… for surgery mind you… and let me tell ya, it certainly didn't add an inch – optical or otherwise! In fact I think it had exactly the opposite effect. Then again that may have had something to do with the sterile, cold, and unfriendly environment and the fact that a person I didn't know at all was using a razor in a place I habitually keep sharp objects away from.

    I don't think I'll be testing the theory again anytime soon… the regrowth was not a fun experience. Itchy, itchy, itchy!

  2. I would say this is clever marketing. Anything that hides male genetalia must be a good thing. I think most people would agree (male and female) that women are by far the better work of art (in a non-Creationist sense). I think there's some truth to the optical illusion inch thing, but of course this is just a small perk to an otherwise bad idea.

    Still, how can we ignore the evolutionary importance of pubic hair? Namely, the visual cue that you're mature enough for procreation (i.e. puberty). Also, what about the selective benefit of olfactory sexual stimulus, which our friend Gary decries? This brings another interesting question. What does the modern man/woman prefer? Colognes and perfumes or the raw smell of sexual stimulus? Me? I encourage showering and good hygiene, but I'm still with Darwin. Au naturale.



  3. I agree about the secondary sexual characteristics, but I said that before in the other post :) I would find a deforested schlong just…alarming.

    While the entire website is funny, and a great use of technology, there was really a snarky tone in the "testimonials" section. It managed to portray women as sexual bimbos, mock the french, and imply homophobia, all in under one minute.

    Is getting an extra inch on your dick really worth the hassle of shaving?

    I guess I had just thought guys were less gullible than that, but the sales stats seem to prove me wrong!

  4. I think having no hair down there would be convenient. Although I can imagine the regrowth being extremely annoying.

    But rebecca seemed to have some info about other problems that might pop up that made her conclude it was a bad idea. She didn't tell me why though. And I didn't google it because, well, I just didn't feel like it.

  5. Bug, I think having an extra inch of length, even just visually, is not worth the trouble. Especially since I'm sure that by now most girls know that it's not length that's important, but girth. And you can't fake that, or even have an operation for that.

  6. But you can get fake-looking porn prosthetics. If you like hearing, "WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT? GET IT AWAY FROM ME!" in bed. Which, let's be serious, who doesn't?

  7. Joshua, you need props to get that to happen? I don't even have to take my clothes off before SOMEONE tells me to get away. :-P

    Personally, I'm of Italian descent which, if you think about it, could indicate why I might THINK about having a bit of a shave. However, that said, I don't go for it for the reasons that have already been mentioned: Regrowth=Itchy, Sharp Things Near The Crotch=Scary, and Extra Inch=Not Worth The Hassle.

    I've resigned myself to my bestial, non-deforested state. I just hope that this condition isn't too frightening to the 'fairer sex'. ;-)

  8. Well I'm not into complete baldness, but I'm also not into picking hair out of my teeth.

    Neatly groomed suits me on a playmate, man or woman.

    oh and Joshua.

    You so crack me up.


  9. Well then, the "optical inch" would prove to be a letdown. That would be false advertising…a sort of sexual trompe l'oeil.

    Heavy hair all over the arms, chest and back, that might be a problem.

    Soap is good.

  10. Oh, that is hilarious, melusine!

    You know, when we had this discussion about *women* shaving, everyone seemed to think it was a good idea.

    Hmmmmm. Do I sense a double standard? :D

  11. What does soap have to do with back hair?

    Expat: Yeah, well. Moreso. Those porno penis prosthetics creep me the Hell out, even more than the deformed weirdos who wear them. Porn is weird.

    bug: I can't speak for anyone else, but personally I have at least a quadruple standard on the subject of hair.

  12. I'm hairier than your average bear, and I have no interest in shaving. It helps remind me that I am mostly a barbarian.

    Mind you, I have been single a long time. related? hmmm.

  13. I, too, was against female shaving. Seems too pedophilic to me. Neatly trimmed, though, I think is most attractive.

    Me? I shave my scrotum and keep the hair above my shaft trimmed to about a 1/4 inch or so. I just enjoy the way it feels, both during sex and other every day activities. I use a disposable razor, though. I tried an electric once a long time ago and … let's just say there was some blood. (I bet that made the male readers' knees go together. :)) There's a shaving gel my girlfriend sells (she does adult novelty parties) called "Cootchie" that minimizes ingrown hairs that cause itchy regrowth. ( I'm really not too computer literate, so I don't know how to make links.:()

    And as long as we're hopelessly entrenched in TooMuchInformation Ville, I also shave my rectum, to prevent those Klingons around Uranus.

  14. hey–if people are going to make promises that seem overblown (pardon the pun), I'm going to call them on it!

    Isn't that what a skeptic does? :D

  15. The last thing I need is to have more places to shave. I've even thought seriously about having my facial hair permanently removed just so I don't have to scrape my face with a sharp piece of metal every morning for the rest of my life. I'm not about to take that same piece of sharp metal anywhere near my family jewels. No, thank you.

    As for women, I think they're beautiful with or without body hair. I came of age in the 70s when most of the women worth spending time with didn't believe in shaving at all, and that's just fine with me. I'm not here to tell any woman what to do with her body. If shaving makes you feel sexy, great, but don't think you have to to make me think you're sexy. I happen to think a woman's sexuality has a lot more to do with what's going on between her ears than what's growing between her legs or elsewhere.

  16. And as long as we’re hopelessly entrenched in TooMuchInformation Ville, I also shave my rectum, to prevent those Klingons around Uranus.

    Shaving your rectum would be pretty tricky, not to mention unnecessary.

  17. Joshua said,

    What does soap have to do with back hair?

    I was replying to three things seperately. The comment about heavy all-over body hair was in reply to JanieBelle's, "Well I’m not into complete baldness, but I’m also not into picking hair out of my teeth." While I don't think going for the "optical inch" is necessary, or even attractive (in fact, as Briarking says it seems pedophilic), it is definitely harder to deal with lots of hair from JanieBelle's perspective. (Ok, now I'm reminded of that scene with Steve Carell in The 40 Year Old Virgin.)

    The soap comment was in reply to:

    penanggalen said: What does the modern man/woman prefer? Colognes and perfumes or the raw smell of sexual stimulus? Me? I encourage showering and good hygiene, but I’m still with Darwin.

    The smell of clean skin on a guy is preferable to me, though some colognes are OK if the person isn't drowning in it. (I wear one kind of perfume, so I can't complain.) The important thing is that lots of hair doesn't allow sweat to evaporate as easily, so SCRUB-a-DUB-DUB. Body odor is a major turn-off.

    In fact, a good friend of mine, one of the smartest people I know with great character, when he was in college he had so much going for him, but he had a strange body odor that was dispiriting – even sitting next to him in the movies. I didn't have the heart to tell him, but maybe I should have – he didn't date for a longgg time. One can be not so good looking, but if you smell or have killer bad breath, that can be a major deal-breaker.

    Briarking, I think you get the TMI award….Klingons… ;-)

  18. Bug_girl:

    Maybe MOST people were all for shaving in the female thread! I was not :) I think I said something like ‘whatever makes her comfortable is fine’ but that I also preferred ‘some’ to ‘none’. As a lazy, lazy male I could totally be fine with a woman not having time to shave regularly or, I suppose, at all if she really didn’t feel like it. But I suppose I’m in the minority on that. Eh, oh well. I’m almost always happy to have a dissenting opinion.

  19. Unlike female shaving, I think this is cyclical. Metrosexuals will be ushered out and bears will be the new in. Just you wait. They already are in ascendence in the gay community, and you know what that means…straight guys are next.

    I myself am not that hairy, with the odd exception of my legs, so going "bear" is not really an option for me. I also have blond hair, which makes me look more clean-cut than I actually am.

    I do, however, shave my head. Shaving the back of the head is hard enough, I don't even want to contemplate having to reach other regions.

  20. Aha. I get it now, Melusine.

    Czech: I, for one, hope that you're right about bears being "in". This twinky gay Canadian I used to know once promised me that I'd be a big hit in the bear subculture of the gay scene. I'm not gay, unfortunately, so obviously I'm excited at the prospect that us hets might catch on (and be able to benefit from) to that particular fetish. ;)

  21. Joshua:

    I'm not gay either, so I get my info second-hand. To be fair, the bear sub-culture in the gay community is a good 25 years old. But I have heard from gay men that "bear-type" gays, while they often do not want to be part of the sub-culture, are now more of a part of the overall community than ever before.

    We all know how this pattern goes. When it comes to trends, the present for gay men is the future for straight men.

    So there is reason for you to hold out hope. I don't know how guys like me who are only hairly below the waist can benefit from any of this. I don't see any sign of a "Satyr Movement" in any community at present.

  22. Buck Fuddy said,

    Shaving your rectum would be pretty tricky, not to mention unnecessary.

    Yeah, I guess I screwed that up trying to make a joke! Much like in the female shaving thread, when a few of us kept refering to "shaving the vagina," I was just trying to keep from being vulgar and not saying "pussy" and "asshole."

  23. Briarking,

    Sorry, I didn't mean to make you be vulgar. I think you could have just said "butt." They even allow that on TV now.

    Isn't it funny how some words are considered less vulgar than others? I often hear people say "crap" instead of "shit" because they think it's more polite. I don't get that. They're both four-letter words for the same unpleasant material. Aesthetically, I think "shit" sounds better than "crap."

  24. Hey, the MythBusters "Fart episode in which they weren't allowed to say Fart" was on this week!

    Speaking of words considered vulgar.

    And you have a looong way to dig before you get down to my level of vulgar. I expect to be voted off the island blog–any day now.

  25. Referring to both threads on this, suggesting that men/women who prefer women to have a clean-shaven groin are thinking about little girls seems not unlike suggesting men/women who prefer men to have a clean-shaven face are thinking about little boys. Seems something of a leap, likely untrue in most cases.

    Anyhow, as a guy, I'm applying a new rule to make an unrelated but practical point:

    Whatever I find down there, I start growing the equivalent on my face.

  26. TheCzech said,

    "But I have heard from gay men that “bear-type” gays, while they often do not want to be part of the sub-culture, are now more of a part of the overall community than ever before.

    We all know how this pattern goes. When it comes to trends, the present for gay men is the future for straight men."

    I just saw an add with Leo Dicaprio, who'se grown a pathetic beard in an attempt to look like he's over 16. Our time may be upon us.

  27. Whatever I find down there, I start growing the equivalent on my face.

    Spoken like a guy who hasn't discovered piercings yet.

  28. I assumed that the optical illusion was the reason why so many male adult performers are "trimmed." But maybe it's to reduce the severity of crab infestations. Who knows?

  29. Well, I'm shaving down there, and I don't think there's an optical inch. I just like the feeling, and I feel cleaner. I don't like a fully shaved woman, though trimmed is fine.

  30. I'm in the "don't like hair in the teeth" camp, so I'm down with shaving and/or trimming. Neatly kept is fine by me. I disagree with the "it looks pedophilic" argument as well because the breasts and other attributes of the woman would guide you to realize she's a fully developed female. It's hot because, in my humble opinion, it shows the man (or woman – equal opportunity, you know) that the shaved person takes time to make their genitals viewable for sexual purposes. It shows an interest and willingness to engage in sexual behavior.

    As Paris says, "That's hot."

    Shit, I *hate* myself for quoting her….

  31. ZOMG! …Actually, I have no idea what the z is for. But forget about that. Did Norelco really intend for him to make the "shocker" hand when talking about shaving 'down there'? And what would that even entail on a guy? I had to watch the video a second time since I did not see any controls to rewind.

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