I LIKE to think of myself as the epitome of the modern man. Gone are the days when a slick of hair gel was considered the height of male grooming, we blokes can now be super groomed without compromising on our masculinity... or just about anyway. From fake tan to guyliner, manicures to spa days to back, sacks, and cracks, little is considered taboo anymore.
The process did feel awkward at first, particularly when positioned with my knees tucked into my chest like a baby about to have its nappy changed.
Spa303 in the Hilton, Manchester, is as welcoming to men as it is to women, hence their wide selection of male waxing treatments. Hairy areas tended to include ‘Groin’ (scrotum, penis, and pubic triangle), ‘Boyzillian’ (scrotum, penis, pubic triangle, and buttocks), ‘Boyzillian Extra’ (all off, front and back) and the latest trend following in the footsteps of the female vajazzle, a ‘Pe-Jazzle’ (a Boyzillian Extra with Swarovski crystals).
Having always fancied the standard back, sack, and crack – or in this case a ‘Boyzillian’ – it’s been a lack of confidence, rather than the prospect of pain, that’s stopped me taking the plunge thus far. Grooming is one thing, but letting a female stranger see your most intimate of body parts in a non-sexual scenario is quite another. To Boyzillian or not to Boyzillian?
To Boyzillian or not to Boyzillian? If it's good enough for Beckham...
I think I speak for many men when I say excessive body hair is no longer a look to be proud of. We’re not talking five-a-side each nipple, but full-on hairy beast territory. Although waxing seems the quickest, most effective way to get rid, there are a few things to bear in mind before you decide to go for broke:
- A stranger will see you naked. Intimately naked.
- It will hurt.
- Men will rib you for it.
- It will hurt.
Spa303 has previously been my spa of choice for other less intrusive treatments with spa manager and therapist Ashleigh, so I was a bit more relaxed. She’s already seen me half naked having a spray tan, but it’s hard not to feel self-conscious about being naked in a room with a pretty woman who’s about to wax you. In fact, it’s a bit like your mum seeing you naked – you know she’s seen it all before, but you’d still rather not.
The pain wasn’t too much of an issue having had tattoos and Ashleigh explained it wouldn’t be as bad because of the type of wax they use. Called ‘Lycon’, I was informed it shrink wraps and removes hair as short as 1mm with minimal pain.
Having completed a consultation form to ensure it was safe to proceed with the treatment, I was asked if I had any questions. “Erm, just a few,” I said.
Given the fear factor I spoke of earlier, here’s everything you’ve ever wanted to ask about the infamous back, sack, and crack as answered by Ashleigh at Spa303. And when I say everything, I mean everything:
Q: What type of man goes in for waxing?
Any man, regardless of age or sexual persuasion, who feels that too much body hair is blighting his life.
Q: Do you trim the hair first?
If the hair is very over grown, yes. The optimum length is 6mm. With our Lycon Magnifico wax (for strong hairs), we can remove hair as short as 1mm but we do ask clients not to shave or trim for at least 14 days before hand.
Q: How long will the actual waxing itself take?
It depends on how much hair growth there is within the intimate area, but it usually takes between 45-60 minutes.
Q: Will I need to have a shower first?
We ask all clients to shower before treatments for hygiene reasons. We have shower facilities at Spa303 if you are coming on your lunch or after work.
Q: Will I need to have a shower after?
You can have a shower that evening but we do advise that it is at a luke warm temperature and that no perfumed products are applied for the next 24 hours.
Q: Does it itch when the hair starts to grow back?
A: Because it is a new hair that is growing there is none of the itching associated with shaving, so there is no discomfort when the hair re-grows.
Q: Will I have to be completely naked?
Clients will be asked to remove all items of clothing from the waist down and to cover yourself with a towel. Sweating can occur therefore the option to remove your shirt is given. During the treatment we can keep you covered with the towel but obviously with the Boyzillian Extra all will need to be revealed.
Q: What sorts of positions will I have to lie in?
A: We start with you on your back and then ask you to bend your legs out with your feet together like a frog. To remove the hair from around the anus I then ask you to bring you knees together and raise them towards your chest. You will be asked to assist your therapist to stretch certain areas when needed during the treatment.
Q: What if I feel the need to fart because of nerves?
Well I’ve never had this happen before, but it’s only natural for you to feel nervous. If this happened I’d expect the client to be feeling fairly relaxed.
Q. What happens if I get aroused?
Don’t worry. This does happen on occasions and usually passes quite quickly. I would just ignore it and get on with the job. However, any inappropriate behaviour would be reported and the client would be asked to leave.
Q: How can ripping hot wax off my testicles not hurt?
We apply a pre-waxing oil that then acts as a barrier between the wax and the skin, so as the wax is pulled off it doesn't stick to the skin. This dramatically helps to reduce the pain as when the wax is gently peeled off it only pulls the hair, not the skin unlike the strip wax. With any waxing experience it will hurt a little, but most men say it isn’t as bad as they thought it would be
Q: Will I bleed?
Blood spotting can occur, due to the fact that we have removed the hair follicle, but this is cleansed during the treatment and oil re-applied.
Q: Will I be able to walk afterwards?
Yes, of course you can. A lot of my clients have to run off back to work afterwards.
Q: How long will the results last?
On average, 4-6 weeks. As you are taking the hair from the root, it means that a new hair will have to grow in its place. This means waxing, unlike other hair removal treatments, gives you a longer time without hair. And the more you have it done, the longer the effects will last as the hair's growth cycle slows down.
Q: Do most men come back after their first wax?
All clients I’ve treated here at Spa303 have returned. In fact I have even had their partners come back to me and personally thank me.
Q: Do you dread doing Boyzillians? Be honest!
Not at all. Boyzillians and sports massage are my speciality. I enjoy educating people about Boyzillians and intimate waxing because it shouldn’t be a taboo subject.
Q: Do you feel awkward doing them?
I have had some amazing training with Lycon in advanced precision waxing for both male and female clients and find it easy to put my clients at ease so neither party feels awkward.
Q. How often will I have to wax and will it hurt as much next time?
Every 4 - 6 weeks. The second time you wax the baby hairs that are growing are finer and they just don't have as strong roots, so they come out a lot easier.
Question time over I was left to get undressed. Ashleigh then checked the whole area to be waxed to see which direction the hair was growing and check for any moles or very sensitive areas.
A pre-wax treatment was then used to prepare, cleanse, and deodorise the skin. A small amount of pre-waxing oil was applied to the area to prevent wax sticking to the skin and make the experience more comfortable, clean, and efficient. The oil forms a barrier between the wax and the skin and avoids pulling of the skin and reduces skin irritation.
Onto the waxing and it was by no means pain-free but it wasn’t half as painful as I thought it’d be. Luckily the speed of each waxing didn’t give me time to wince.
The process did feel awkward at first, particularly when positioned with my knees tucked into my chest like a baby about to have its nappy changed. Ashleigh managed to ease the situation though, eradicating any potential awkward silences by talking me through what she was doing. The embarrassment soon faded and it wasn’t long before we were done.
To my surprise, having my balls waxed was actually the least painful part. This was partly due to the fact that Ashleigh advised me to pull the skin taught myself in various directions while she pulled the wax off. It helped a lot. The inner thigh area and crack of my bottom was a little more tender, but you’d be a fool to think it's all plain sailing. No pain, no gain.
Waxing over, soothing tea tree lotion was applied to calm the skin and help restore the skin's natural balance. It’s a shame tea tree lotion couldn’t also be applied to my mate’s mouths to calm them down too when I got home.
In between ribbing, they were actually intrigued to say the least. They’ve all had some type of beauty treatment in the past and one of my pals takes longer to get ready than most women I know but this was, until now, unmarked territory for our group.
They had loads of questions, most of which have already been covered in this review and I'm quietly confident they'll all be jumping on the bandwagon soon enough. The missus on the other hand preferred to have a good giggle at my expense. Still, I must admit I didn’t do it for her anyway. This was about feeling fresh, clean, and invigorated - just as I do after a shave. The result was exactly that.
Furthermore, my concerns about feeling vulnerable were gone as quick as the wax was removed. Ashleigh could have been Megan Fox and it still wouldn’t have made this situation feel in any way seedy. Waxing is about as sexy as brushing your teeth with a wire brush, but the outcome is much more pleasing.
Would I go back? Without a doubt. And next time, I may even treat myself to a Pe-Jazzle.
Chris had a Boyzillian (£55) at Spa303 at the Hilton, Deansgate, Manchester. For more information on male waxing at Spa303, please click here or call 0161 870 1789.