The substance and style of manscaping

(from FrolicHawaii.com 6/23/15) – Amanda Stevens

Manscaping. Merriam-Webster defines it as “the trimming or shaving of a man’s body hair so as to enhance his appearance.” It’s also a hot trend these days for everyone from male models to the everyday Joe.

Back in the day, the only guys who waxed their body hair were athletes. Now, thanks to movies like “40-Year-old Virgin,” it’s no longer a secret that some men prefer a cleaner bodyscape.

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Image courtesy of Universal Pictures

I’ve been fascinated with male facial hair since I can remember. My dad had a healthy mustache, but I’m pretty sure that what really made me take notice was seeing Tom Selleck playing volleyball at the Haili Tournament on Hawaii island. Oh my goodness, was that a ‘stache.

For their takes on what’s happening in this sphere of men’s body art, I put some quick questions to a local grooming expert and two serious manscapers. You might be surprised at what they have to say.

Grooming, with less pain

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The European Wax Center recently opened in Pearl City using a Comfort Wax that is pretty much painless. I tried it — the wax isn’t too hot and they don’t use those dreaded scary strips. Here’s my Q&A with David Pang, the company’s regional developer:

Are men paying more attention to grooming?
Yes, they want to look good, look clean, but not too perfect.

What are the most popular services for men?
Eyebrows, legs, nose and chest — once they get it done, they usually come back. After the treatment, they feel better about themselves, more confident.

Why are more men in their 20s and 30s interested in manscaping?
The younger generation of men are feeling more comfortable about grooming and the spa scene, and understand that looking clean is in. Over the last several years we are seeing an increase in men’s grooming practices. Men want to express their individual style, and still look their best.

Trimmed for that George Clooney stubble

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Model Sam Armitage, photo by Eric Tagayuna

Sam Armitage is a model from Hawaii who is gaining national exposure. He can easily switch things up with a healthy Adam Levine-type stubble or a clean-shaven look.

“Guys should care about being comfortable in their skin and their hair. That means taking time to groom, using the right tools and conditioning with the right products to keep everything in check. My groomer, Rene, taught me that it’s really about keeping trim and clean, but balancing it with masculinity.”

Keeping it professional

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Mike Ortiz is a 30-something professional. In 2014 he made a bet with his brother about who could grow the most epic beard. He won — and kept the beard.

“I’ve been able to find that balance of being a working professional and stylish. My beard definitely is a conversation starter, opening doors to meet new people on my travels and develop new friendships. It’s become more than just extra hair, it’s become a part of who I am and it tells the story of where I’ve been.

I upkeep my beard by utilizing tips from men like The Beard Baron. I purchase a line of beard products from Honest Amish, a company based in Pennsylvania focusing on all-natural beard care products.

I use beard balm to condition my beard and the extra grit beard wax to give it more control. I apply the beard balm and wax daily which takes about 15 minutes from start to finish. I also make sure at least once every couple of weeks that I take some scissors and cut the longer hairs to match the rest of the beard for that somewhat clean, uniform look. I also make sure I upkeep the edges on my cheek and neck lines as straight as possible.”

 

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