Body Hair: a Taboo

It’s that time of year again!  That’s right- NoShavember.  The month where men are glorified for their facial hair and women are shunned from participating in the fun.  Even according to NoShavember’s website, the rules to participate are as follows: Men, shave cleanly on October 31st, don’t shave for the entire month of November, and post pictures of growth often.  Women, shave your legs, often.  Nothin’ like November revolving around some sexist fun!

So why is it that we’re so afraid to talk about women having anything other than soft, hairless, shiny legs?  I’m not going to lie, I used to be one of the girls who judged other girls for not shaving their legs, or not shaving often enough.  In fact, my mom chooses not to shave her legs regularly.  I’d often get mildly embarrassed walking around with her in the summer time, and my brother and I would tease her.  She always said, though, “Why is it weird? The hair occurs naturally on my body, therefore it is not gross that I choose not to give into a society that says I must shave.”  Seventeen year old me would always just say, “yeah whatever, Mom.”  But twenty year old me says “DAMN, MA SPITTIN TRUTH.”  Literally, the reason women are shaving is because it became a fashionable fad, and then people who saw the money in it decided to make it a thing.  If you want a more in-depth history behind it, check out the History Of Shaving.

We have this concept that women need to be silky smooth all the time to be considered desirable.  And this goes up past the legs as well.  This morning I was scrolling through Facebook and came across Instagram-famous Sjana Earp who made a video about how to maintain pubic hair.  While there was one part of the video I felt was misinformed (“if you’re a girl, you’re feminine.” we know this is not true.), she did a great job of lowering the stigma behind discussing body hair as a whole. Perhaps it’s because she said the words “pubes” or “pubic hair” eleven times in the first minute and a half.  My favorite part is that she emphasizes during the WHOLE video that everything that you do to your body is for your own comfort.  Yeah, I personally, shave!  Cool!  Do I want a cookie for it?  Well, yeah, because a cookie would be cool, but you know, not for shaving my underarms.

The point is- you gotta just do you.  If you want to not shave at all, that’s rad!  If you choose to shave sometimes when you’re feelin’ it, but then don’t want to shave most of the time, hey that’s cool too.  And if you just like the feel of smooth legs and choose to shave all the time, great.  When it comes down to it, you have to do what’s right for you and your body.

2 thoughts on “Body Hair: a Taboo

  1. This post is really awesome. It actually put me in the mood to grow my arm pit hair out and then dye it a crazy color since I’ve damaged the hair on my head too much with dye.
    But, I digress. I love this post because it’s showing 1. how crappy our society is for saying that women HAVE to shave to be feminine, desired, etc. and 2. it expresses an open minded feeling about it all. If you want to shave, go for it. If you don’t want to, do that too. I liked the sentence “you just gotta do you”.
    Thanks for this post!


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