Make the Pain Go Away: Post-Manscape Prickle

A professional manscaper explains how to avoid the itchy aftermath of shaving your body hair.

Make the Pain Go Away: Post-Manscape Prickle

Manscaping, aka trimming or shaving your body hair, has its obstacles: navigating your nether regions, managing the sheer volume of hair on your body and, of course, the seemingly inevitable prickliness that follows. But you don’t have to feel like a porcupine if you want a hairless bod. With the correct manscaping advice from Melanie Mari, owner and trained manscaper at Bare Skin Studio, and dermatologist Anthony Rossi, we’ll all be able to tackle our bushy ball beards without having to deal with the itchy aftermath.

Why It’s a Drag: “Whether you’re using a trimmer or a razor, you’re essentially slicing the blunt tip off of the hair and leaving a much sharper tip in its place,” Mari explains. “That’s why you’ll often notice freshly manscaped hair catching on your clothes—the sharpened tip is slipping into the fabric.” That’s bad news not only for yourself, but for anyone you might be rubbing up against in the weeks to come.

Who Suffers Most: “The coarser and denser the hair is, the pricklier it’s going to feel when you trim it down,” Mari says. In other words, if you’ve got the kind of body hair that looks like it should only sprout at full moon, Mari recommends avoiding manscaping altogether and waxing instead.

Make It Go Away: Reducing prickliness starts with a proper manscaping technique, which means treating manscaping the same way you treat shaving your face. Rossi recommends the following: “Manscape in a hot, steamy shower to soften up the hairs. Trim or shave with the grain, never against—if you’re not sure which way to go, pull the razor in the same direction that your hair seems to be pointing. That will prevent creating sharp angles. Moisturize afterwards to condition the hairs and clear up any irritation.”

If that doesn’t leave your freshly manscaped skin feeling smooth as butter, Mari recommends trimming rather than shaving, and leaving the hairs long enough to lay down flat against the skin. Depending on your hair type, this means experimenting with your trimmer and the various guard lengths that come with it.

Hey—no one ever said having a super smooth bod was easy.