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No no Body Hair Removal for Mens

Body / November 27, 2014

You want to preserve some semblance of manliness, some physical manifestation of your inner Paul Bunyan. But you don't want to look like Big Foot. So some body hair falls in the "Oh, Hellllll No" category. Your back: wax it. That unibrow: pluck it. Those ears: burn 'em.

Yup, you read correctly: Burn 'em.

In the video above, Miles Elliot, co-owner of Rivington Barber in New York City, demonstrates the art of ear hair singeing on me. He's one of very few barbers outside of Turkey, where the technique originated, to perform the wild (and kinda scary) treatment. This is how it goes down: He wraps a cotton ball around a pair of barber's scissors, dips it in 70 percent isopropyl alcohol, lights the sucker on fire, and carefully taps the ball of fire against my ears, both the outer rims and the inner canals. Voila—before I know it, my ears are denuded.

Why should one submit to a technique, in the comfort of a barbershop of all places, that can seemingly result in turning one's head into a fireball of pain? Let us offer up a few reasons:

Men's grooming doesn't leave much room for danger and intrigue. Seize the opportunity. There's really no risk if your barber knows what he's doing. Just make sure he knows what he's doing. Says Elliot: "Because the hair has been singed, the hair fizzles away, leaving behind nothing that can fall into the ear canal and cause an infection." It's better than the alternatives. Elliot continues: "Shaving runs a huge risk of getting cut because of the intricate shape and how delicate the skin is. Waxing and tweezing can be very painful. And once a hair starts to grow back, you run the risk of it becoming ingrown and infected in a painful spot. Clipping with a scissor runs the risk of a wrong snip, which can be extremely painful and bloody."