The Fashionable Do-Nothing Approach to Grooming, Hygiene, Landscaping, and, Um, Fashion

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The conventional wisdom holds that the solution’s to ones problems must involve doing something. But have we overlooked the opposite, easier and cheaper option? Here’s making the case for doing nothing in five spheres of modern-day consumer life.
Forget about shaving.
The World Series champion San Francisco Giants, a squad of scraggly, mostly unshaven ballplayers, are the latest examples that unruly facial hair is not only acceptable, but cool.

Perhaps the anti-shaving movement isn’t going to stop there? A Psychology Today blogger questions “one of the more interesting events of the early Twenty First Century.” And what might that be? “The disappearance of young women’s pubic hair,” he writes, reflecting on how not all that long ago, the sight of pubic hair happened to be considered a major turn-on. Now, the Brazilian wax—”That costs about $100 a pop, here in Manhattan. Not to mention the pain involved.”—seems to be more popular than the natural look. But trends, as we all know, come and go, and perhaps we’re due for a Brazilian wax backlash.

Forget about buying running shoes.
Proponents of the barefoot running movement say that jogging sans sneakers is more comfortable and better for your feet, ankles, joints, and knees than being tied up inside even the priciest athletic shoes. Some marathon runners are even hitting the road without sneakers, reports the NY Times. This is certainly one way to cut back on the cost of footwear.

Forget about weeding or mowing the lawn.
Environmentalists say the world would be a better place without lawns. A front yard with native plants is more earth-friendly—and also less expensive and more low-maintenance, requiring less upkeep, less water, and no chemicals. Planting a garden in your front yard is a more productive use of the space, but then again, that would be doing something.

Forget about washing your jeans.
A Levi Strauss & Co. executive swears: “The less people wash their jeans, the better their jeans become.” He gives his jeans a traditional, comprehensive wash only once every six months—which help the jeans achieve a cool, well-worn appearance and a longer lifespan, and which obviously helps limit what you’d spend on water and laundry detergent.

Forget about deodorant and showering.
At least daily showering, that is. The NY Times’ Style section, in one of its quasi-trend stories (or bogus trend stories according to Slate), profiles a number of otherwise normal, supposedly un-smelly people who don’t partake in commonplace habits involving shampoo, deodorant, and a daily shower. Why do they refuse to jump on the cleanliness bandwagon? They believe that most people overdo it, making their skin dry and their hair frayed and lifeless. One man in Philadelphia credits “laziness” as to the reason why he uses shampoo only once a month. A woman from Malibu, California, explains how she manages to stay clean while showering only a few times a week:

She contends that a soapy washcloth under her arms, between her legs and under her feet is all she needs to get “really clean.” On the go, underarm odor is wiped away with a sliced lemon.

I don’t know. That sounds like too much effort—like actually doing something.