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It’s for Serious Men: Manscaping

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Metrosexual Masculinities
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Abstract

Gone are the days, it seems, when the hairy bodies of Tom Selleck and Sean Connery (Magnum PI and James Bond respectively) were seen as normal for men, according to the Daily Mail (Kemp, 2013). Apparently men of all ages are now waxing, plucking, lasering and shaving all aspects of their non-scalp hair from eyebrows to toe hair in line with celebrity pinups such as Andrew Garfield, Daniel Craig, the Chelsea football team, all of the British and Irish Lions rugby players, the 2012 British Olympians and so on. According to an online survey of more than 1,000 male readers conducted by lifestyle magazines Cosmopolitan and Askmen.com, 95% of men ‘manscape’ (Hilmantel, 2012). Indeed, these men were reported as saying they thought other men were ‘weird’ if they didn’t ‘trim the hedges on a regular basis’ (2012, p. 1). What’s more, a multi-billion pound industry has grown up, offering a variety of hair removal products. Global giants Gillette and Nivea now offer online tutorials for men who need a little advice on how to remove that unwanted hair. Gillette posts its ‘How to …’ video series on YouTube, whilst Nivea has its own webpage called ‘Manscaping 101’. Whilst the trend seems set to continue (Mukherjee, 2014), it is not without its critics.

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© 2015 Matthew Hall

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Hall, M. (2015). It’s for Serious Men: Manscaping. In: Metrosexual Masculinities. Palgrave Macmillan, London. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137404749_9

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