Should Men Shave Their Legs?
A shaved man is a growing trend in men’s grooming, and that includes shaving the legs. Of course, maintaining the leg hair isn’t just about men shaving their legs, it can also include trimming or waxing.
If you ask most men if it is weird for a guy to shave their legs, they’ll most likely bring up athletes shaving for sports, including bicycling, swimming, and body-building. Who would think that smooth legs are becoming a more popular aesthetic decision for men?
Why Do Men Shave Their Leg Hair?
Do men shave their legs? Indeed, they do. There are a few reasons that a man would want to remove his leg hair. This decision ranges from sex appeal to a sports advantage, and some men find that they simply prefer it.
According to a poll in Men’s Health asking should guys shave their legs, 33 percent of poll participants reported trimming, and 15 percent say they shave their legs frequently. That means almost half the poll respondents said that they perform some sort of leg maintenance, whether they shave completely with a razor or trim a little.
Maintained legs also get positive responses from women. A poll in Women’s Health found that 28 percent of women enjoy when a man trims his leg hair, and 22 percent enjoy clean-shaven legs. Keep in mind that, while it may be more than you expected, it’s still not everybody. Many women will prefer men with natural or hairy legs. There are many women who think it’s weird when a man shaves his legs.
When people wonder why would a man shave his legs, their first answer normally is related to sports. There are a lot of contradictory thoughts on whether a hairy body will make you measurably less aerodynamic. However, if you’re running a close race, most people won’t want to leave it to chance.
Close shaves are primarily common with bicyclists, swimmers, and body-builders. These certainly aren’t the only sport where an athlete could find it advantageous to shave their legs, either. Men who shave their legs for specific sports tournaments or competitions often find that they get used to smooth legs and continue to shave them long term. Some people just prefer how it feels.
There are medical reasons for shaved legs as well. Hair might be in the way of a wound healing. It could also be that you need to use a topical treatment that’s more effective without all that hair getting in the way. Or for those that need to undergo a medical treatment that shaves half of their leg, they might prefer to even themselves out by shaving the rest.
For many guys, a little trim is all that’s needed. It’s not about having clean-shaven legs. Instead these men prefer to remove thick or unruly hair on their legs. This helps to avoid bushy, long, or unkempt hairs. Guys who trim most often use electric clippers to get the job done. While it may add more work to your hair management and grooming routines, it can help to show off the defined muscles of your legs. It’s also easier and requires less skin maintenance than shaving with razors, which requires moisturizer cream and a more frequent routine.
Pros and Cons of Shaving Your Legs
We can talk pros and cons for ages, but the most important thing is whether you like it or not. If you like your legs shaved or trimmed, then by all means do it. If you don’t enjoy your legs trimmed or shaved, then it’s certainly not necessary for you.
Still don’t know where you stand? Here’s what to consider before shaving your legs: the good and the bad.
- It helps to show off your tattoo artwork. What’s the fun of having a tattoo on your leg if the design is obscured by bushy leg hair? Most tattoos artists will require you to shave the skin in that area of your leg to get the tattoo. Then, when it’s time to let it show, most men feel it’s worthwhile to remove the hair and give their ink a clear display.
- Legshaving is manscaping and can provide sex appeal. As we mentioned above, some women have said that they prefer a man with clean-shaven legs. This is a conversation you can have with your potential partner. And if you’re the sort of person wondering should guys shave their feet, it will likely do more good than harm. Of course, you need to be comfortable in your own body, and how you maintain it shouldn’t be determined entirely by others.
- Let yourself show off the labors of your workout. A lot of hair can make it more difficult to see the definition of your muscles. This is why many bodybuilders remove their leg and chest hair. If you’re working out to make your body look better, hair maintenance can help you really enjoy those gains and draw attention to the muscles that you’re working hard to develop.
- It takes time, money, and maintenance. Shaved legs are something that you have to keep up with and maintain with consistent shaving and moisturizer. One major downside of shaving is the cost of razors, which can add up when you’re shaving frequently. Leg hair can be very uncomfortable as it grows back in for both you and your romantic partner. If you want it to feel good, you’ve got to keep up with it.
- It can make you appear fussy or high maintenance. You’re not going to be fooling anyone. If you shave your hairy legs, you let people know that you’re working to maintain your body hair. Women know that this bit of maintenance in particular can be time-consuming and at times unpleasant. Some will be into it, but it might also make you appear high-maintenance.
- Many women think it’s odd. Everyone prefers different things. There will always be women who won’t want their partner to have smooth legs. The thing is, if you enjoy your legs that way, this might be something you can work out in different ways with your partner, or it might be a sign that you need to attract another type of potential person. One thing to consider is that if you’re only shaving your legs for the sex appeal, it might backfire on you.
Mistakes to Avoid When Shaving Legs
Many guys aren’t familiar with using razors on their body hair. One important thing to remember to keep razor shaving from becoming a painful process is to always moisturize afterward. Let’s face it, if you want a close shave, you’re going to risk ingrown hairs. Dry, fragile, or broken-out skin won’t give you the look you want. Always consider your health when you use razors, and make sure to use moisturizer.
- Not Following a Schedule – When you start maintenance and grooming, it will be much easier to have a schedule or basic routine. This keeps the manscaping from being a chore. Don’t worry, though. It’s not the end of the world if you’re a day late shaving.
- Shaving Thick Hair Without Trimming it Down – If you’re shaving thick leg hair for the first time, you should always start with a trim. Shaving thick hair down to the sticks can be frustrating. Trimming can get you started with a shaving routine. Start with a longer trim to determine your preference, and work your way closer to the skin as you like.
- Don’t Be Shy About Using Lotion – Lotions and moisturizing cream are important for healthy skin. Once you shave, the razor removes layers of skin cells. Additionally, you’re exposing the skin to the air without the hair to help keep natural oils on your skin. Lotion replaces these oils and softens the skin to avoid ingrown hairs and itchy legs. Opt for an unscented lotion with high-quality oils and ingredients.
- Waiting too long between shaving – Unless you intend to grow your leg hair back out, it’s best to not wait too long between leg shaving. The first time you shave your legs will be the most time-consuming. However, if you keep up with frequent shaving, it becomes much quicker. In this case, you simply need to remove the stubble for a close cut. The longer you wait, the thicker the hair will grow, and the more tedious each shave will be.
What About Other Types of Hair Removal?
Not all maintenance solutions will be best for all legs. Your ideal leg hair maintenance will depend on the thickness and length of your leg hair, as well as what you’re willing to put into your grooming routine. If you have very thick leg hair, you might prefer more aggressive leg hair maintenance, either trimming or shaving, to show off your muscled calves. On the other hand, those with lighter or thinner hair may not need to do too much.
Trimming is a lower maintenance option for taming thick leg hair without having to commit to the near constant maintenance of shaving.
Electric clippers are necessary for leg hair trimming, and the idea is to simply cut the hair down to a more manageable length. This will help to make the hair appear less dense as well. Trimming is one cost-efficient method, once you purchase the clippers. It’s also quick, and you’ll likely only need to do it about once a week.
Everyone will have their own ideal length, but trimming down to about half an inch is a good place to start for natural-looking leg hair. Trimming your hair too short can make it rough or prickly like stubble.
Professional waxing can be much more expensive than shaving, but many salons will give you spa treatment while you do it. The good thing about waxing your legs is that it lasts longer than shaving since wax removes the hair from the follicle. This means that the hair won’t grow back in the next couple of days. You will likely only need to wax every two weeks at most, and some men can go a whole month between wax appointments. One downfall of waxing is that it can be quite painful.
Laser Hair Removal
Laser hair removal is an option for your legs, but it can be very expensive. You will need multiple sessions if you want to significantly decrease the amount of hair that grows on your legs. This method also is more effective with darker hair; though, there are some options for fair hair that professionals can help you decide on. On the plus side, it’s permanent, so if you’re sure about bare legs, you won’t have to worry about it again.
How Often Should You Do It?
The frequency of your leg shaving or trimming routine partly depends on why you’re doing it.
If you shave your legs as an athlete to get ready for a competition, then you might only shave them right before and throughout the competition. If, however, you want bare legs for longer to show off your bodybuilding gains, then it’s best to shave frequently.
To keep it smooth, you should use the razor, on average, every other day. Additionally, moisturize daily to make sure that the shaving process does not become uncomfortable.
If you’re opting to trim your leg hair, you can use the trimmer less frequently. Many men only need to trim about once a week, depending on how quickly your leg hair grows out. For some, it can even be a bi-weekly event, since its main purpose is to maintain the leg hair and keep it from being too thick and unruly.
Shaving or trimming your legs can be a great source of self-esteem to help you look your best. Here’s the thing, though, once you begin shaving your legs, you start drawing attention to them. Many men prefer to get their legs in shape before they start drawing that kind of attention. Of course, this could all be part of a larger plan to get in shape to feel and look your best.