I hate shaving my armpits. They’re concave, for one thing. The skin is sensitive and the razor burn is real.
So there I was, in the shower, with razor-burned pits, contemplating shaving them again. “Does anyone even care?” I thought.
That was back in March. I chose not to shave, that day, and then that week, and then that month, and then “until I can see how long my hair actually gets.” I braced myself for negative comments.
So far? Not one. So I thought I’d invite comment. I posted on Facebook: “Should I stop shaving my armpits and legs?”
My hypothesis on the post was that the majority of people would say “Your body is yours! Do what you want!” But that a few women would say “Shave!” because women are more comfortable commenting on other women’s grooming. I also suspected there would be at least one dudebro who would inform me that it would make me less attractive to him, as though this should be my motivation in doing anything.
I didn’t think I’d get that many comments. Like… maybe ten? I got 52.
It took some courage to go back and read them!
21 people responded with some variation of, “It’s your body, do what you want!” 8 male 13 female
5 responded along the lines of “Dude. Shave.” As I expected, this was mostly women, 4 to one guy. This guy was, predictably, the hairiest man I know.
A surprising 8 said “Go for it” – equally split among men and women.
And two categories I did not intend to count but ended up adding. Two men said, “Do what you want, but I say no.” and two men said, “Do what you want, but I say yes.” Perhaps because men feel the same need to equivocate their opinions while discussing women’s personal grooming that women feel when expressing opinions all the time.
There were a number of responses from women that were just their own personal choices on shaving, why they chose to or not to. A few handy suggestions on laser hair removal that I will be looking into!
I did not get the expected male response of “Here is why it is important to appeal to me.” So yay? My extended circle, at least, have grown beyond that.
Congratulations to the two ladies and one dude who said “Experiment!” because obviously that was exactly my intention.
I guess my results are: people (who are my facebook friends) care to comment on these issues, but are generally supportive of women making their own body-hair decisions.
So, having not shaved for two months, here is what I’ve learned about hairier me:
I’m proud I was even able to do this. I’ve spent my life deeply ashamed of my body hair. Whenever I’d daydream about finding a magic lamp, one of my wishes to the Genii would be permanent removal of all body hair. I purposefully did not alter how I dress, and I wear a lot of sleeveless dresses. I noticed just how many sleeveless dresses. I felt self-conscious. Particularly when dancing. But still, no one said anything.
My armpit hair is particularly dark and thick. I also stopped shaving my legs, but there it’s like… I have to point it out to my husband for him to notice. The hair on my legs isn’t as thick or dark. Even when I could feel the wind blowing through it, I didn’t feel as worried about people noticing it as my armpit hair.
So if I could give up permanently on one, it’d be the legs. Pity, because shaving my legs is easier and less of a hassle than the pits.
Feeling hair in my armpits is a wee bit uncomfortable, but that might be because I’m unused to it. It’s not really more uncomfortable than razor burn. Ugh. Can armpits never be comfortable? I worried about putting deoderant on broken skin all the time when I shaved, now I have to put it on more often because the hair holds sweat and gets stinky faster. And, again, the hair is super-dark. Almost mesmerizing against my white-ass skin.
So yeah, let’s hear more about this laser hair removal?by