NEW YORK — Hair: we all have it, but some people have much more than others. Body hair isn’t traditionally something men are shy about, which is what made a recent survey of 2,000 men on the subject all the more shocking. The survey found that 55% of American men are ashamed or embarrassed about their body hair.
Additionally, one in five respondents said they “often” feel this way about their body hair, causing hesitation while participating in certain activities.
Almost a third of the survey participants said they have avoided going swimming because of their body hair. Another 27% said they have avoided the gym, and one in five said their body hair has negatively affected their sex life.
The average participant in the survey claimed to shave every seven days, but 48% said their grooming habits weren’t optimal and 43% said they weren’t confident in their self-grooming abilities. A total of 60% said they have put off shaving their face out of “dread” or simple laziness, with 63% saying their appearance suffered from the lack of grooming.
An attitude adjustment may be in order: 44% said they hesitate to fully groom themselves because they consider it “unmanly” to be so concerned with their grooming.
“When most men think of having better ‘grooming habits’ they often think of going into a salon and waiting for their name to be called for their waxing session.” comments Matt Dryfhout, founder and CEO of BAKblade, in a statement.
The survey also indicates that most men aren’t interested at all in shaving any body part besides their face; 62% said they’ve never shaved their back, and 53% said they’ve never shaved their legs. With these numbers in mind, it isn’t surprising that the survey also found that 54% of men feel there is a negative societal stigma surrounding men who focus too much on their appearance and skin.
Interestingly, despite all of their reservations, many men seem to be becoming more and more curious about expanding their grooming regiments. Nearly half (43%) of men surveyed admitted to secretly using a partner’s beauty product, such as moisturizer or face wash.
Per month, the average U.S. male spends roughly $35.11 on grooming and hair care products, which doesn’t sound like all that much, but 47% of respondents say this is much more than they were spending on such products just five years ago. Who knows, perhaps the men of the future will be spending double or triple that amount on hair care.
“While men, overall, are getting more curious in the area of grooming, it is the millennials that are showing the most curiosity,” says Dryfhout. “The biggest hurdle has been showing men options available to them while at the same time letting them know how easy it can be. ”