It’s not something that you hear discussed too often, but it is something that you see all too much. Ear hair. It may seem strange to talk about, but ear hair is a problem for a great number of men. Where does it come from? What is the best way to remove it?
Where does it come from? A question, I’m sure, many grandchildren have asked their grandfathers through the ages. However, the answer is a wee bit more complicated than something your younger grandchildren could understand.
It was once believed that ear hair is an inherited trait that was passed along on the father’s side (in the Y chromosome). However, the research for this has been inconclusive. According to a study conducted in Mineola, New York, in 1984, 74% of the men surveyed had ear hair. Unfortunately, the study did not delve into the changes through age groups, ethnicities, or any other factors.
What we do know about ear hair is that very tiny ear hairs in all of us act as a screen to protect your body from unwanted airborne pollutants (i.e. dirt). As men age, their hormone levels fluctuate. This change affects hair growth. Scientists believe that the hormone that causes baldness known as dihydrotestosterone (or DHT, for short) may also be responsible for those annoying ear (and nasal) hairs. However, very little research has been done on the relationship between the two.
That being said, the question that still looms over all of this is: how do I get rid of it?
There are many ways to eradicate unwanted hair, but finding the one that is the most efficient and least painful for you, may take a few tries.
To start, if you have never groomed your ear hair before, using scissors (preferably scissors used specifically for cutting hair for a more intricate cut) cut the hair that is sticking out of the ear or covers the ear lobe. Then you can try out these different ways of remedying ear hair:
Attempt #1: Shave closely around your outer ear being cautious as there is much possibility that you may cut yourself given the delicate nature of the ear.
Attempt #2: To go a little deeper, purchasing an ear/nasal hair electric razor can be a beneficial addition to your personal grooming accessories. These types of razors do vary in price, but normally a moderately priced shaver will suffice. Due to the fact that tweezing your ear hair can be dangerous and may damage the eardrum or ear canal, using an electric razor is the best way to get as close as possible using mechanical devices.
Attempt #3: You can melt it. That’s right. Melt it. Put your lighter away. What I mean is using chemical hair removal products such as Nair, you can help melt away unwanted hair. However, as nice and easy as this sounds, there are some hazards involved in this type of hair removal. For one, the chemical should not go near the inner ear because it can cause damage. Secondly, if you have sensitive skin, you may react unfavorably to this type of treatment. Many packages will caution you to try the product out on a small sample section of your skin to test for a possible negative outcome first. Although chemical hair removal has the potential to leave your skin its smoothest, there are risks involved especially if you have sensitive skin or are prone to reactions.
Given the alternatives, it seems as though buying a moderately priced electric razor is the way to go to ensure proper maintenance and the least possible complications. However, if you feel like trying out the alternatives, hair removal chemicals can be purchased in any pharmacy and most grocery stores.
You may feel fine simply taking care of the hair on your outer ear, too. This may be the least painful thing for you and the most efficient. But…what’s that? Doctors also say that earwax can build up in your ear hair resulting in problems hearing. That’s right, I said problems hearing. So, don’t just wash behind your ears anymore try to keep the insides clean as well. This may mean trying to get a little bit of a closer shave of that pesky ear hair or simply taking the time to clear out your ears (not with cotton swabs, but with baby oil, mineral oil, or commercial ear wax removal drops that can be purchased in any drug store). However, if excessive wax buildup has become a problem or you find that your hearing problems do not improve as a result of keeping your ears groomed, it is recommended that you consult your physician.
Taking care of your ears is an important part of the personal grooming process, not only for aesthetic reasons, (which are important), but also for your own hearing health (which is just that much more important). Happy hearing.