Male body hair: Sexy or not?
What should guys do with their body hair -- leave it or shave it?
Body hair on women is simply taboo, like it or not.
But for men it's more complicated. Some girls go for hairy macho men, others find a shaved and trimmed look sexy.
Thirty-year-old Mumbai hiking guide Dhiren Talpade shares his hairy dilemma. "When I go to the beach with male friends I tend to compare myself."
Dhiren is a bit self-conscious about his body hair. "I look at my friends and end up wondering whether I have excess body hair," he says. "I do think about how it makes me look."
He's curious to know whether having a bit of excess hair on his body could make him less attractive to women.
"None of the women I've been with has ever brought it up as a problem. But that's also because I've always shared deeper bonds and relationships with women. I've never looked for shallow connections."
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However, Dhiren is aware that if he tried to pick up girls in bars, his physical appearance would play a bigger role. "If I were to indulge in these situations, I might start worrying more about my body hair," he points out.
Dhiren is an outdoor professional who spends most of his time leading groups on hiking expeditions. He realises that having some excess hair on his body doesn't hurt. In fact, it works in his favour at times.
Photographs: Rockpocket/Wikimedia Commons
"I spend many hours walking and hiking in the sun. I know that I'm less prone to sunburn and that's probably because of the bit of extra hair I have. So it does have its advantages," he claims.
Despite his concerns, Dhiren is confident about the way he looks and doesn't want to change a thing. He's also wary of coming across as being metrosexual to the women he is around.
"I really don't spend too much time thinking about the way I look. I don't want to shave or wax my chest. My ambition is definitely not to be an underwear model," he says.
However, he's quick to add that he doesn't think any less of men who do away with their hair. "It's their choice. I like my body this way, and maybe their taste is different from mine. To put it simply, some people like using an umbrella when it's raining, some like using rain jackets and others just prefer getting wet!"
Photographs: Dextrovert at en.wikipedia/Wikimedia Commons
Dhiren does admit that there was a time around puberty when he was curious and experimented with his hair. "I started trimming my pubic hair when I was younger. After a few times, I realised that I was more comfortable with letting it grow, so I have stuck to that ever since."
To each her own is Dhiren's opinion when it comes to hair on women. "I'm open with women making their own decisions, it really doesn't bother me. I think part of it is also because I haven't yet been with a woman with a really hairy chest!"
Photographs: G.dallorto/Wikimedia Commons