Grooming trends come and go, one minute it's all about having the best beard, the next it's the man bun (we're glad this is now calming down). A well groomed man is a turn on but an overly well groomed man just takes it too far. Life's about balance and this includes your grooming habits. So, from an Idle women's perspective, what are the grooming habits women actually hate?
Guys and their much loved habits can be annoying. You may not realise it and you may think it makes you look cool, edgy, unique, whatever you want to call it, but usually this isn't the case. And we don't mean to be harsh, but we as women, just think you should have a heads up about what we actually like. And what better way to do that than being straight to the point. With no offence taken (we hope), we've rounded up the things that women hate about some of your annoying grooming habits.
The beard umbrella has been opened, and you've done it inside at that. The amount of bad luck that comes with a beard is quite unfortunate for men and we do feel for you - sometimes anyway. You can either grow it like Evan Almighty or you're stuck with little to no hair like most of the guys in the Idle office. Facial hair grooming is one of the first things a girl notices about a guy, along with your shoes and finger nails (we'll get onto this later). So it's important to trim, grow and look after your beard to make it suit you. If you know you can't grow one, then don't. It's a simple as that. Keep your chin smooth, because believe it or not, girls will still fancy you beard or no beard.
If you do have a beard, you need to get it trimmed and shaped on a regular basis. You get the hair on your head cut every two weeks, so why not do the same with your beard. It'll grow better and always look well kept and neat. Getting it trimmed at your favourite barbers is only one half of the puzzle as you should still be trimming and looking after it at home too. You don't have to wash it everyday but a conditioner once a week will do wonders.
Guys need all the answers when it comes to eyebrows. Basically you don't want to have two bristly bushes sat above your eyes, and on the other side of the spectrum, you don't want better brows than us. We don't need any more competition in our life. So tame them. This is the advice that any girlfriend will give you. Yes you can get them done in a shop and this isn't uncommon for guys any more, so don't feel embarrassed. Ask for them to look natural - you don't have to go for the whole 3D brow thing, you can leave that to us. Get the long ones cut, the tweezers on the ones that have grown in weird places and make sure there's no mono-brow going on. Once that's done, you're good to go.
You are not Simon from the Inbetweeners, Danny Zuko or Cameron Diaz in Something About Mary, so calm it with the hair products. You don't have to use loads, a small penny size is just enough. There's really not much else to say about this other than keep it subtle and make sure the pomade, gel or hair wax you use is suitable for your hair type. The best male grooming products are the ones that are tailored to you, and because everyone's different, the hair products available to you are as well. Men's grooming has grown rapidly and the industry is, as always, one step ahead of us, meaning you can easily get the best product for your own needs.
This may be something you don't usually think about but girls notice it, big time. Biting your nails isn't ideal, it shows a lack of male grooming so it's usually an instant turn off. When we first meet you, we want to see if you have good male grooming habits and your nails are an easy way to spot this. You also don't want your nails to be too long and you definitely don't want them to be dirty. Dirty nails makes us feel a little ill inside and you don't want that. So keep your nails (hands and feet please) trimmed and clean and you'll be in our good books.
Back Hair, No Thanks
Hairy backs are not cool. Hair on a guy is a bit like Marmite - girls will either love it or hate it, but this is only true for chest or facial hair. Your back hair is a definite no go. We know it feels like a bit of a curse for those of you that do seem to have a full on carpet on your back, but there are ways to sort this. Waxing is a big yes when it comes to back hair. It's probably the easiest way to make sure it doesn't grow back stubbly and the best thing is, you don't have to do it as often as shaving. Plus, after a while the hair will start to thin anyway. Win win really.
If girls can get everything other than their head waxed, then you can get your back done. Waxing really isn't that bad, especially on places like your back and chest, so if you do want a smooth torso then go for the whole thing - wax the front and back. And if you don't believe us, ask anyone. Back hair should be banished. One of the biggest grooming tips for men that you can take away from this is: if it's weirdly hairy, get it waxed (or shaved if you're a wimp).
By trimming we mean your nose, ears, pubes, the lot. Any place that you find hairs growing where they shouldn't be, get the scissors out. Obviously it's natural to have hair in these places but an excessive amount isn't OK. Your nose and ears need to be trimmed on a regular basis because the hair will just keep growing, and the thought of that just makes us girls shiver a little. And, while we're on the subject of ears, clean them. Please and thank you in advance.
For the areas of hair that only your someone special gets to see, you don't need to get rid of it all. We don't want clean shaven because, and we won't lie to you, it freaks us out a bit. You can trim it and make sure you're not getting lost, but you need to know the right hair ratio and we very much hope you can figure this out yourself.
Skin like sandpaper isn't something a girl wants to feel, so moisturising should be a big part of any male grooming routine. It can sometimes be forgotten or skipped because you don't think it's a big deal, but if you knew how much it benefits your skin you wouldn't be missing it out each day. If you have dry, red and irritated skin then a good moisturiser can help clear these issues. We don't want you spending the entire morning hogging the bathroom so you can do the most dramatic morning beauty routine, but seriously, investing in a good moisturiser will kick start you for the day.
Calm It With The Cologne
Men’s grooming essentials obviously include some kind of fragrance, but you don't have to smell like a walking brothel. And sorry to be blunt but those of you that spray four or five times, calm down. We get it, you've spent the majority of your wage packet on the new Gucci or Jo Malone favourite, but save your remaining pennies and only spritz the stuff once or twice, or even three times if you're out for the night. Gassing the women you want to impress isn't going to get the best reaction, and unlike all the fragrance adverts we see daily, your aroma isn't going to cast a spell and make the girl fall in love with you instantly. Sorry.
The Only Way Is Tanned
It's not. We all love a tan, we'll admit that, but you need to know when to stop. In today's modern society, reaching for the foam and tanning mitt isn't anything out of the ordinary, and neither is heading to the sun bed shop once every couple of weeks. But if we even get the slightest glimpse of patchy wrists and orange hands then nope, we'll turn the other way. If you're more of a sun bed guy, then go for it, but more than once a week we'd say is too much. Because let's face it, everyone's pale in the winter, you may as well embrace it like the rest of us.
This is a big one. It's the thing that can make or break any relationship. How you leave and treat the bathroom should be given some thought. Moving in with someone and having to adjust to their everyday habits is enough as it is, so if you're now sharing a bathroom, for us girls, there's nothing worse than how you leave it. We don't want to be brushing our teeth to a load of tiny shaving hairs that are stuck around the sink. Nor do we want the bathroom cupboard filled with irrelevant products that you don't even use. Three quarters of the room is hers, one quarter is yours. Do with it what you please, but taking up too much room won't make us happy.
It may sound unfair but if you have the right products, you don't actually need that much room. We get that you've now discovered that you can buy toners, cleansers, eye creams and skin tightening serums, but that doesn't mean you have to take up all the room. You're shaving kit, yes, it contains a lot of creams and balms and gadgets but other than that, a good moisturiser and maybe a cleanser will keep your skin refreshed and hydrated. And going back to the hairy sink - once you've had a shave, clean up after yourself. Or if you're really clever (or just lazy) shave in the shower, as this way the hair should wash away with limited effort. Just don't use our razor, as that's not cool.
Our Products, Not yours
Finally we come to the one that may annoy us the most. Male hygiene and looking after your skin is amazing news for us to hear, but it's not as good when you decide you want to start using all of our products. Our products are expensive and because we know how to use them (and how not to over use them), we don't mind spending our cash on them. You may think 'oh it's just eye cream' but no, it's £45 eye cream that you have just used £15 of because the bottle looked cool and you were 'just trying it out'. Please stop and get your own products.
And anyway, male and female skin is different. Yours is a lot tougher than ours, so the new facial serum we've just bought will do absolutely nothing for your red blotches and shaving rash. There are products that are designed for you and designed to combat any issue your skin may be going through, so abuse the rising popularity in the men's grooming market. It's there for you.
On That Note
The male grooming tips we've given may be small and seem irrelevant to you, but they're worth thinking about. Do you over spray your cologne? Grow out your beard till you can be bothered to get it trimmed or forget to apply moisturiser unless it's Friday night and you're about to head out? Well, get your head together and get your grooming game on. Knowing how to be well groomed and not annoying are two life skills you should master, so nail these and you'll be ready to impress.