The landscape of manscaping: Buffs who aren’t ashamed to say they love being pampered
Trip to the salon anyone?
Fake tan, shaving, plucking: once regarded exclusively effeminate, these days more and more men are grooming themselves to immaculate lengths.
Gone are the days of men not caring about their appearance, but why are they choosing to ditch the barbecue tongs in favour of a pair of tweezers?
Mancunian beautician Faye Cheetham, of Beauty at Home, has noticed the number of men going in for treatments has slowly increased over the past decade – so it’s not just a recent phenomenon. She said: “I think it’s getting more ‘acceptable’ for men to have treatments. Over the 11 years I’ve been in the industry, I have noticed an increase in the male clientèle considerably, and the majority don’t feel as embarrassed about coming for treatments, many book again.”
While some are just beginning to explore their metrosexuality, seasoned manscaper Ben Taylor is what some may call an expert with a vigorous routine.
He told The Tab: “I go to the gym five days a week, and have my hair cut every three to four weeks, depending on how messy it gets. I trim my beard every two to three days, and shave my chest once a week. I’ve never been waxed but I’ve contemplated it.
“I won’t leave the house without my hair being washed, or at least looking like it has just been done. I’ll have a shower before I go to the gym just so I can do my hair. I shower after it as well just to clear up any doubt.”
While these extreme lengths might seem excessive, there is an obvious benefit to keeping your look fresh. Jobsearch.com lists looking tired as one of the top 10 reasons you could fail a job interview: no one wants an employee who looks like a zombie. Rest assured, Ben has a solution to avoid the tired look too.
“I use a little bit of concealer to cover the bags under my eyes. I’d never wear makeup like a woman, no eye shadow or lipstick or anything, but I have naturally very dark bags and pale skin which don’t look good.”
Slowly, the old stigma about men taking care of their appearance is dying out, with more male-orientated beauty products appearing on our shelves. Many books have been written as guides for the modern man, detailing gateway practices such as going to the gym and shaving, straight through to the application of numerous expensive lotions, eyebrow plucking and even manjazzling (yes, this is a thing).
Birmingham second year, Josh Moses, has recently discovered pampering in the form of fake tan. He said: “I initially needed after-sun and I noticed a product with a hint of bronzer to enhance my tan, so I gave it a go. It was so simple and easy to use, not patchy at all, and the outcome was really good.”
Some men even admit to going to a salon for a good treatment, and Birmingham City University second year Pedro Rodriguez isn’t “embarrassed” about his extensive routine or beautician appointments.
He revealed: “I manscape my eyebrows, feet and downstairs area. I don’t take care of myself with products at home. Fuck that, I go to a salon and they take care of me.”
Pedro added: “Looking better makes you feel better. I like looking polished because the way you dress and look shows things about you. I don’t feel embarrassed.”