June 1st, 2016
Clinical and community studies suggests that optimal genital hygiene can minimize the risk of contracting various sexually transmitted diseases and infections. This in turn can have a huge impact on your sexual and psychosocial lives.
Experts recommend that shaving your pubic area makes it easier to maintain the hygiene of your genitals and since it is a growing trend, most people expect their partners to maintain a clean and bald look. According to a new study reported in the Journal of Sexual Medicine (1), 95% participants reported that they have removed pubic hair, at least once in the past 1 month period and 60% reported that they would prefer a clean partner.
On the other hand, a lot of people have contradictory point of view when it comes to pubic hair removal; for example, it is believed that pubic hair serves as a protective barrier in females to limit the entry of dirt and impurities in the female private parts. Not to forget, most hair-removal products are full of chemicals and toxins which can damage your sensitive skin and cause rashes/ irritation. In a new study, genital itching was reported as the most common side effect of pubic hair removal in 80% participants (1).
Shaving pubic hair can be a tricky business and one wrong step can lead to embarrassing accidents. It is imperative to mention that extreme caution must be exercised if you are using a razor to remove pubic hair as any cuts or abrasions can aggravate the risks of contracting sexually transmitted diseases.
Here are some tips for shaving pubic hair safely in males:
1. Use of proper before and after products:
Before applying razor, it is better to apply a gentle shaving cream (especially when there is lot of hair to be chopped off). Once shaving is done you should apply an aftershave balm to keep your skin moisturized and free from foreign pathogens. Applying an antiseptic after-shave balm can also reduce the chances of irritation, redness, itching and a bumpy/ rough skin. Moreover, both before and after shave products should be high good quality to avoid any skin reactions. Saving money on such products can later cost you a lot. It is always a good idea to perform a skin sensitivity/ allergy test before actually applying the product on the sensitive parts of your body.
2. Do not hurry!
Shaving area near the genitals can be very risky therefore, don’t be too self-assured while shaving. It is a really bad idea to shave at the eleventh hour. Be cautious and take your time. It is better to go slow or else you may end up with a serious injury.
Make sure to stretch your skin with one hand while shaving with other to minimize the risk of inflicting cuts/ injuries. Following a pattern (i.e. starting from navel and working your way down) helps in achieving a clean and smooth shave.
3. Keep it simple!
Don’t show your artistic skills down there. Keep it simple and clean. Short and long- these are the two styles for pubic hair. Getting crazy designs on pubic hair can actually give a bad impact and turn off your partner or any potential date.
4. Appropriate tools
Use tools according to the hair growth and the area you are dealing with. For detailing, tools like razors and tweezers are better while scissors and clippers can be used for more insignificant cuts. You will need a combination of tools throughout the shaving process as some parts will require simple cleaning while handling areas near the genitals will require extra care.
It is always a good idea to trim your hair first before applying razor to prevent clogging. You can also take a hot shower before shaving as it helps in softening the hair and widening the hair follicles for deeper clean.
5. Shaving kits should be separate
Your shaving kit for face and pubic area should be separate. As it would be very unhygienic and disgusting to shave both areas with the same razors. Besides hygienic issues it may also make your razors worn out much faster. Keep both kits separately as no one wants to end up shaving their face with a razor that has touched many places. Make sure to exfoliate and keep your genital area clean and dry.
1. Butler, S. M., Smith, N. K., Collazo, E., Caltabiano, L., & Herbenick, D. (2015). Pubic Hair Preferences, Reasons for Removal, and Associated Genital Symptoms: Comparisons Between Men and Women. The journal of sexual medicine, 12(1), 48-58.
2. Smith, L. A., Reed, L., Hickinbotham, L., Cooper, C. E., & Evenden, R. (2015). “Oh yes, it has to be all neat and tidy down there”: exploring the everyday narratives of young women’s perceptions and practices around genital appearance and sexual identities.
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