My research on men’s hairstyles, male body hair and how all these “hairy” issues connect in society and among men
As part of my role in sociological research at the Buenos Aires university in collaboration with UCLA, I am preparing some research on mens hair and how it affects male in a sociological manner. Trends such as manscaping, which is a buzz word for shaving and trimming body hair in men, are increasing by the year as so is the shaving of public hair.
On the other hand, men have now chosen to wear beards that have become a trendy male fashion statement and nowadays they are full, bushy and unkempt. The trend has been picked up by the so called “hipsters”, a sub-group of men in society who follow fashion trends and prefer a more sophisticated lifestyle. These trendy beards are accompanied by trendy hairstyles and the slicked undercut hairstyle (also known as slicked back undercut — see the link) is by far the most popular hairstyle with a beard. The slicked undercut is a hairstyle that is achieved with pomade and which was popular over 50 years ago. The trend of picking old men’s hairstyles as trends isn’t anything new, and before the slicked undercut, the previous trend was the slicked combover (2009-20012), which it too was a hairstyle that was popular over 50 years ago.
Online, there are countless examples of men with beards and undercut hairstyles as seen in the linked hairstyle website, and the trend of unkempt beards with haircuts that were popular half a century ago are on the up-rise, no doubts about that.
On the other hand to men with beards and slicked undercuts, there is still a strong going of men who prefer to be clean shaven. In fact I have seemed to find through my research that there’s a dichotomy in male grooming: you have the extreme of long unkempt beards and then you have the extreme of maximum grooming with polished faces. I have even found evidence of such a dichotomy and male trends migrating to the LGBT community and most notable the female-to-male community of individuals. I have also found several online communities that discuss the dichotomy of beards and shaving, and overall I have seen that the grooming topic tends to have quite ardent followers.
One more factor that I will be looking into my research is the use of men’s hair products. I am particularly interested in shaving and trimming tools such as electric shavers, and I am also interested in organic hair grooming products such as those made from hemp. There currently exists a massive range of hair trimmers and electric shavers and this boom of grooming tools occurred in the 1990s, when male consumers were bombarded with a vast range of tools that could shape, trim and shave their hair from their faces, scalp and body. Gone were the days of deciding where to use a safety razor with a replaceable cartridge or a straight razor, men now had it all when it came to body hair grooming and facial hair shaving.
The other point of my investigation when it comes to men’s hair products is the use of organic products. Organic food products are on the rise and by default, organic beauty products are also on the rise as many are made from natural raw materials, including hemp. The use of hemp is legal in Argentina and organic beauty products and oils are imported from countries like the United State and the Netherlands. There is a small but growing niche market of hair products for men made of hemp, and of those a good part are products for facial hair in the form of beard oils and conditioners and for body hair in the form of shaving gel.
My research is currently under preparation and presentation to our Sociology department. I will be informing through this blog and to our subscribers to this blog of any updates for my research on mens hair and the link between society and men through their hair. I have a lot going in my life, including the eventual set up of our hemp menswear online shop.
Is there any hidden agenda in this research?
No! My agenda is fully open and is solely an interest in research. There is nothing more than what you see – research into male facial hair and body hair, females’ reactions to it and the bizarre question of whether physical appearance and political views are connected.
Why armpit (axillary) and pubic hair is not being researched.
The secondary sexual characteristic hair that all people (men and women) have is axillary and pubic hair. I am satisfied that this subject has been satisfactorily researched already. There may be new discoveries to be made but I have found that male (and female) body hair has not been researched much and I believe it is more fertile ground. If you have unusual axillary or pubic hair, I would like to know about it but, unless many people report the same unusual phenomenon, I do not think it will figure in my research.
Beards also appear to have been researched adequately but there has not been much research into the dichotomy of growing a beard and shaving in men, which seems to visibly separate men into two camps: those who have a beard or facial hair style, and those who shave and keep a clean shaven look.
Why baldness is not being researched.
Baldness is possibly the most researched hair issue. A lot is known about the subject and I do not think anything I learn from my correspondents will contribute to research on this issue. With one exception: is there a connection between body hair and a tendency to bald? A straw poll seems to show that men with little body hair either keep their hair or go entirely bald; men with some body hair are most likely to go bald; and very hairy men tend to have hair that recedes slowly throughout their lives, keeping most until old age.
Why gay men’s attitudes to hairiness is not being researched.
Some gays seem to have taken offense at what they see to be a “hetero-sexist” stance in my pages. I mean no offense to anyone and hope that these people will read this FAQ and understand my reasoning.
I do not ask gays for their opinions of hairy men simply because the “Bear” movement and hair fetish among gay men is well documented. Enough work to understand the phenomenon has been done and I do not think I can make a contribution. I may be wrong and I offer you the opportunity to prove it! I am happy for you to complete the parts of the women’s questionnaire regarding the attractiveness or otherwise of hairy men. Maybe what you say will alter my views of whether there is anything new to be discovered. If you complete the questionnaire, please state that you are a gay man on the form somewhere.
I assure you that I do not hold any prejudices against people on the grounds of their race, sexual orientation or disability. I do not judge people who submit answers to my questionnaires and I also try to answer all responses.
Are questions answered if we have any issues with this mens hair research?
If you e-mail me with a question, I will try my best to answer it. If you do not receive a reply from me within two weeks, try again – there is obviously a reason why.
Need all hair grooming questions on the questionnaires be answered?
No. If you don’t wish to answer all the questions, the system will allow you to submit answers only to those you want to answer. But please indicate (in the comments box) which ones you have left out as the system will send the defaults to me.
Are questions in English or Spanish?
I will give you two copies of the questionnaire, one in English and one in Spanish. you can answer in whichever language you want, although the publication of the research will be in Spanish for the Buenos Aires University. Worry not, your answers will be kept anonymous and will not be published. Only the conclusions arrived at from the total answers will be published.
When will this mens hair research start and when will we wear about it?
I will notify you if you are subscribed to our blog and I will also update through this blog.
Quick Update: We are currently needing translators who will help us to translate the research into French, German and Italian. If you are available or know anyone who can translate to these languages, then please contact me through the contact form on this site. Thanks!