Whether it's long, short, straight, or curly, your body hair is important.
It protects skin from dirt and germs, provides cushioning for your sensitive parts, lessens the friction between skin and clothes, and holds in heat to keep you warm when you need it, which leads to more revealing clothes.
Body hair even helps provide a subtle dating service by retaining your unique personal scent — conveyed by chemicals called pheromones — which helps a potential mate become attracted to you.
Sometime after puberty, your body starts sprouting hair in places that were probably baby smooth just a few short months before: around your genitals, under your arms, on your legs, and (for guys) on your face and neck.
Many guys find it exciting to start growing body and facial hair. Male pubic hair is a sign that they're changing from boys to men.
Some people choose to keep their new hair — they like how it looks, their partner prefers it, or they leave it for religious reasons, among others.
But other people prefer to bleach, trim, or completely remove hair from some parts of their bodies.
No matter what you decide, you've got plenty of options for dealing with your own body hair.
We've compiled a list with pros and cons for each choice. If you know the facts, making this personal decision about male pubic hair or body hair won't be so "hairy"!
This is the easiest option of all — just sit back, and let it grow!
You get all the benefits of having the hair, and you don't have to spend time or money trying to get rid of it.
However, some people find that armpit hair can encourage the growth of bacteria there, leading to body odor.
Female pubic hair in particular, however, often attracts other non-practical considerations.
Bleach or dissolve it.
Chemical bleaches lighten hair so it's hard to see. Depilatories dissolve hair so it washes away.
Both are good for places not only where you'd rather not have hair, but also where hair removal is difficult (for example, the upper lip or lower back).
Both are easy to apply but can irritate sensitive skin. They're available at any drugstore, but they aren't cheap — they run anywhere from $8 on up.
Shaving hair is inexpensive and easy — a pack of three disposable razors costs around $1.50, and shaving cream costs around $4.
The downside is that you're scraping a very sharp blade across delicate skin — be careful, or you could be in for some serious cuts.
Pluck or wax it.
Pulling hair out by the roots leaves you smoother longer — it can take weeks for hair to grow back.
However, it can also be painful, and some hairs can come back ingrown (growing beneath the skin).
Tweezing yourself at home is free, but waxing at a salon will cost you — starting at around $10 for an upper lip and $25 for a bikini area.
Electrolysis removes hair by killing its roots with an electrical current. It's permanent — once the hair is killed, it never grows back.
However, electrolysis can be painful, and sometimes leads to scarring. It can also be expensive — about $75 an hour.
Because each hair has to be shocked individually, some areas of the body can take several hours to treat!
Laser hair removal is also permanent. Because whole parts of the body can be treated at once, it's much quicker than electrolysis. Pain is minimal, and skin heals quickly.
However, according to dermatologist Christine Min-Wei Lee of the University of California, San Francisco, not all lasers can be used on everyone.
"Only seven lasers have been approved for use on ethnic (non-white) skin," she said.
Treatments are costly — anywhere from $500 on up per session. Most people need two-to-six sessions to completely remove hair.
Does that put male pubic hair into perspective?
Lots to consider, and lots of options. Enjoy!