Let’s be clear. We are talking about manscaping with a manual safety razor and not a machine that makes up for your lack of dexterity or a steady hand. So, this isn’t for the squeamish or faint of heart. One moment of bad judgment could spell disaster for days to come.
Manscaping is all about taking care of business for body parts that are mostly obscured by clothing during normal social interactions such as work and time with family and friends. Yes, the face and scalp are always exposed and as such get most the attention when it comes to manscaping. These parts of the body are accustomed to being manhandled by the blue-collar tools of the trade, the safety razor, and scissors. Removing body hair from the most private parts of the torso is another story. The safety razor is an unknown and potentially unwelcome guest in those nether regions. The skin beneath that hair has rarely been exposed to the rigors of a straight blade scraping the hair away from the skin. There are consequences if your technique lacks sophistication and respect for what might go wrong. I suggest you start thinking about that special person that could lend a hand.
The Right Tools for the Job
All jobs like this go much better if you have the right tools. You should have learned that lesson from working on your car. A five-minute job to put a new battery in place can turn into a thirty- minute stress filled fiasco and skinned knuckles. Manscaping with a razor presents the same challenge. This is your face using a safety razor with a dull blade and bad technique. Now, carry that vision to shaving around your junk and inner thighs. Ouch! Imagine having to walk a mile in that condition … and you thought chafing was a royal pain the ass.
So what do we need to make this evolution go the right way? The industry has responded. There is a type of razor made specifically for the body of the guy that wants to manscape. The technology offered by Gillette addresses many of the concerns that guys face when shaving areas of the body that have contours and edges that most safety razors used to shave the face don’t have.
For instance: The rounded head versus the flat head of most razors gives this tool the ability to pivot with the unexpected contours it will encounter. It’s sort of like the vacuum technology from Dyson, the Dyson ball. It’s rounded and literally pivots in place without pulling or tugging. So it is with this Gillette technology.
- The rounded head versus the flat head of most razors gives this tool the ability to pivot with the unexpected contours it will encounter. It’s sort of like the vacuum technology from Dyson, the Dyson ball. It’s rounded and literally pivots in place without pulling or tugging. So it is with this Gillette technology.
- The blades are next up on the list and the one guiding factor is that they must be sharp. The cost could be prohibitive if I were to recommend that you use a new blade every time you manscape. This is where judgment and experience come to bear. You’ll know when the blade is done and needs to be replaced. You may try to rationalize not changing it in your mind but, it’s not your mind that your shaving. It could be the family jewels and they don’t take well to you rationalizing away their health and welfare. Technology does what it can to account for your risk taking into but even floating blade technology won’t prevent the ultimate damage a worn out blade can cause.
- Anti-slip grip … hmm, that is a godsend because when we manscape, we love to do it in the shower where it’s all soapy and slippery with the areas being shaved covered in equally slick lather. The one thing you must do is keep the blades under control and only cut what they are supposed to cut.
- The lubricating strips are nice because they make up for some of your lax behavior in keeping the skin taut and smooth as you draw the razor across it. The technique is still of the utmost importance but the strips can save an inadvertent slip or two.
Let’s Talk Technique
We’ve used the word several times already, so let’s dive a bit deeper. Some of this go to gathering the right tools and material before you start manscaping so keep that in mind as we go through the basic techniques. These techniques apply to shaving the back, chest, arms, legs, groin or whatever.
The first step is to enlist the aid of a helper. Let’s face it, there are places you just can’t see what you’re doing. The helper should obviously be your significant other or a very close friend that one day could become someone you want to be intimate with. Choose well my friend. You are putting a lot on the line.
The second step is to prepare the area for the open blade of the razor. Longer hair can create issues with clogging the razor which could then initiate some damage in the way of nicks, cuts, and razor burn. A good way to minimize this problem is to use a body groomer to prepare the area for the blade. This electrical device will cut down the forest and give you clear sight to what you’re doing. You might decide to shortcut the process and call the electric grooming good enough but, trust me, it’s not. The stubble that remains needs to be shaved so that the desired outcome of smooth skin is achieved. There is a host of body groomers out there to choose from. Read the reviews before buying!
The third step is simple but critical. Wet the area with water as a pre-moisturizing event. The body gel you’re about to use will spread easier and expand into a thin layer of lather that lubricates the razor blades and softens the hair to be cut. Water that is tolerably hot will make the skin more pliable in advance of gelling up. That way, when you pull it taut before taking the stroke with the razor, a smooth surface will make things easier for the razor and its own self-lubricating strips.
The fourth step is to apply the body gel or shaving cream of choice. A gel is a better choice because it won’t get so thick that you can’t see very well. Don’t go crazy on the body gel either for the same reason. You want a thin layer of gel to soften the hairs. You’re not trying to put out a fire, you are attempting to prevent one in the way of razor burn.
The fifth step is to shave. This is where you learn from experience. It’s hard to know one’s own body well enough to understand where the tricky curves, dips and valleys are unless you’ve been there and done that a few times. So, take it slow with smooth even strokes and let the body razor do the hard work. You have the rounded head and an infinite degrees of motion capability that will seek out and conform to the contours the body presents. Taking it slow trains your own eyes and brain to know where the danger spots are. If you’re still early in the process of preparing the skin to know what to expect, taking it slow will save you some pain later. Rinse with warm water to remove any excess gel.
The sixth step is to help the skin recover by using a moisturizer on the shaved areas. Don’t be stupid and use anything that’s alcohol based or things like aftershave. You will regret that very quickly. The creamy moisturizer will rehydrate the skin and treat those areas where the first layer of the epidermis may have been scraped a bit too hard and is in need of repair. There are many products on the market with ingredients such as aloe that are wonderful for that purpose.
Then, since we’re talking about a process, you need to close the loop and decide on what the recurring nature of having to manscape is using the body razor method of keeping the body sleek, lean and mean. Taking that analysis one more step, compare it to waxing and epilators techniques and decide which one fits your lifestyle and pocketbook.
Hazards, Tips, and Warnings
Contrary to popular belief, the buttocks is not a follicle-free zone. Hair does grow there extending down from the small of the back into the crack of the butt. It also grows up from the genitals into the crack from other direction. It does not need to be close shaved using a razor. Leave it as is for the most part except for some trimming if the growth is unusually thick. Razor bumps and a rash is inevitable and the skin is very sensitive in that area. This warning extends to the back of the thighs and hamstrings. The hair there is generally light and not of significant length. A quick swipe of the electric body groomer will suffice and prevent the unwanted side effects from slowing you down.
The body razor is an excellent DIY effort so long as you use a friend to help with the hard to see and hard to reach spots. However, the downside is that its shaving and the hair grows back quickly. So long as you’re prepared to treat your body like your face regarding shaving on a frequent basis, you won’t be able to maintain that manscaped figure to impress the ladies or make you more successful at a sport. Commitment and dedication to that purpose are vital to achieving success.