Teen Guest Blog: Guys, I’m Not Shaving My Body Hair For Your Approval

By | September 20th, 2013 | 19 comments

bodyhair

by Becca, 18-years-old

As a girl in high school, I will hear such phrases as “she has a bush” followed by endless, howling laughter at the table filled with boys in lacrosse garb and backwards snapbacks. The other girls at the table laugh along, blindly trained to hate the hair that is on their bodies. Their Sperry’s scrape across the cafeteria floor as they criticize the “nasty girl with a bush:”

“Shave that shit off! That’s NASTY! I would never touch that!”

There are many standards set for women, causing internal conflicts with body image.

Unfortunately, boys, I am not shaving anything for your approval. My choice whether or not to shave my legs is mine; I am not doing it to please. Your sexual standards are not mine to follow. I choose my own rules when it comes to my own anatomy—and if you feel that my body repulses you, I don’t want you coming anywhere near it.

A girl with body hair is now an untouchable—she has no sex appeal to the teenage boy (and now, the seemingly adult male) who accepts the porn industry’s child-like vagina as the norm. Women are trained to believe that one cannot embrace femininity without shaving. Young girls are taught that body hair is gross and “unladylike.”  I can embrace my womanhood without embracing the social construct that makes my body hair seem unnatural.  We are not hairless creatures, but we are forced to pretend that we are, in a society that turns away the idea of a woman who decides to go against the social standard.

I am just as much of a woman even though I don’t shave my armpits or any other part of my body. I still have everything that makes me a woman. I love to embrace my femininity, I look forward to wearing dresses and pink and frills; I just don’t use a razor. This does not somehow transform me into a man. I still have the same vagina and breasts. I still have every single part of me that makes me a woman.

When breaking social barriers in a high school, I have learned to expect the glares and laughter in the hallways. Even from your best friends, who may agree with you in the privacy of your bedroom, but not in the open air of a high school with everyone watching and judging.

Nothing is private in the yellowing classrooms. Any piece of information can be spread through twitter and iMessage in 20 seconds. And for someone to know that you consider yourself a feminist? Why not drop out of school.

I am done obeying ideology that oversexualizes my body and forces me to confine to the rules of a man-made construct. My body should be policed by me, myself, and I—I should not be subject to glares, stares, and cutthroat phrases while walking down the street.

What I do should not be up for your commentary. I shouldn’t be forced to hear harsh words through tough Boston accents criticizing my anatomical choices. I’m challenging gender. We live in a world where young boys and girls are told what to do and what not to do, what makes you a woman or man and what does not.

My choice not to shave is a choice to show what we have and what we are forced to hate. We are told to pretend that our hair is not there, and that it is an unnatural phenomenon to have it. It is my choice not to shave and makes me no less feminine than I was before. It is a symbol of what I am and what I will never be.  Hair is not an offensive thing, nor should it be. It is simple: your body is yours. Every choice is your choice to make. Your body is in your control. The pressure of our culture can be overpowered. I push no negativity on others and expect no negativity back.

Becca is eighteen years old and lives in a suburb of Boston, Massachusetts (but hopefully not for much longer). She spends her time adventuring with her friends, perfecting her Spotify library, and fantasizing about living her life in Denmark.

19 Responses to “Teen Guest Blog: Guys, I’m Not Shaving My Body Hair For Your Approval”

  • […] stop shaving because I tell you to. That would possibly put me on a par with the teenage boys who talk disgustedly about their female classmates as “having a bush” if they don’t shave. I’m not interested in being another voice telling women what to do with […]

  • Hannah says:

    Wonderful piece, but from personal experience, I feel like this is mostly an issue with younger men/teenagers. I am in college and have never had a guy have an issue with my pubic hair (I don’t have a bush, but I’m not shaved either). While people might have personal preferences, I don’t think anyone would call pubic hair on a woman “nasty,” at least not where I am. And there are PLENTY of guys that are cool with feminists.

  • Sastry.M says:

    Time for women to preserve nature’s hairy calling in the present highly polluted earthly environment, never getting enslaved to hate and save womanhood from impending disaster.

  • Ryan says:

    Yeah, according to mound and mounds of empirical evidence from the most reputable journals–just check yourself if you want to challenge this…

    Women prefer wealthy men, because they can protect them when they’re pregnant and help them rear fit children that will carry on their genes. Therefore, status is the most important thing to women when finding a mate–hence why age matters less and body hair matters less. They also want testosterone, because that means fertility. Testosterone is exhibited by muscles and body hair, and men don’t go through menopause.

    Men prefer younger women, because younger women are more fertile. After age 30, women are vastly LESS fertile, and are most fertile immediately after puberty. A woman will never has more eggs than she does right now, so the earlier the better.

    Younger women have more estrogen and less testosterone, healthier skin, hair and bodies. Therefore, less body hair, clear skin, and thick hips and small belly (a shape that emphasizes estrogen over testosterone) is preferred. Men don’t care about status, as they’re the main providers both in our culture, and in nature–ape males are bigger and stronger.

    So ,men prefer women that are young and hairless. Not little girls, because little girls can’t give birth and carry on male genes. They prefer girls that have been through puberty, but have little body hair, and thick, healthy head hair.

    It’s no less fair than women seeking status. So stop whining.

    • leeloo93 says:

      “They prefer girls that have been through puberty, but have little body hair, and thick, healthy head hair.”

      I laughed when I read this.

      When girls start puberty or “been through” they DO NOT have “little body hair” What do you mean by that? They grow hair. That’s a sign of sexual maturatity.not “a little hair” that’s ridiculous. You are ridiculous. How can we possible have “little hair” as if we can control it. YOU need to stop whining. Grow up. You are the reason. Fucking sexist man.

    • Ahttiell says:

      Ummmm, here is a truly disturbing fact…there are little
      Girls as young as six going through a freaky
      Form of sexual maturity where as they still look
      Like little girls, however have been raped by older
      Males from teenage to adult men and gotten
      Pregnant and given birth to babies. This information
      Has truly traumatized me. So young and hairless
      Or little hair please….at this time that totally archaic
      Reasoning for the men preferring younger women
      Still only applies to a certain percentage of men,
      Some which would make the rest of is women cringe.
      Keep in mind, you are only one male and the notion
      That all men are as you say, you must be talking about
      Yourself I’m gathering is laughable. Ever heard of cougar
      Cubs? These are young men who are attracted to older women
      And one more thing, I’m assuming that before you hit
      Puberty you too were hairless. Is this to say you too
      Were a young feminine females person until puberty hit
      And you grew body hair as we’ll? People are individuals
      And while many men may prefer the hairless look
      And women too, again that’s only a percentage of the human
      Race and this doesn’t make it right or wrong, just a preference
      And a bizarre one at that. I see it as fake femininity
      If that’s the case because that young woman of yours
      Will likely start growing some according to you, manly hair
      And will have to remove it some form to maintain
      Her perceived femininity and since all young women will
      Eventually grow hair and is designed to by nature. So it seems
      To me then if growing hair is a “man” thing and most adults
      Without any genetic things that cause them not to grow hair
      Are in fact all men and all people who shave are deciding
      That they want to be perceived as those young nubile
      Prepubescent boys in girls of youth. Btw people of all ages
      Are capable through genetics to grow varying amounts of body
      Hair including men. So does that mean a man who naturally
      Grows little Body hair could be perceived as young and feminine
      I mean I guess it does appear this way if you think about young
      Men who do not grow much body hair and look younger. It’s weird
      Though that we equate hairlessness-with femininity considering male
      Humans can also exhibit this quality. Not every man wants a younger
      Woman just as every woman wants an older man. Some
      Women are also desiring of younger men.
      A

  • Nice article and great knowledge. I love this story and enjoy with your words!

    • Al Morr says:

      I am so glad that I met a girl who had never shaved or trimmed her armpit or pubic hair ever in her life, like me she had gone ‘au natural’ from the moment hair started to grow in those places and remained like that for all her life. I also loved reading that story and fully agree with you that it is a brave girl, especially now in 2017 who resists all efforts not to shave or trim at all, more so than it was in the golden days of naturalness in the 1970’s or 80’s, glad to see that more women are not shaving in those places now

  • Christina says:

    Adult humans have hair on thier legs, under thier arms and in thier pubic region. Public hair is a sign of sexual readiness. As far as I am concerned hairlessness, especially stubble is really pretty disgusting and at the least mildly pedophilic. My partner, the father of my son once asked me if I could compromise and shave, because he thought that he might like it better (and I think even more he gets mildly embarassed about when I am in a bathing suit in the tropics). I suggested that what we could try as “compromise” to shave half of each of our bodies and not the other half. It was a humorous moment but he knew that I would in fact do it, and has not asked since. He still shaves/trims much of his hair, which I am not fond of, and his sexual feelings for me seem not to have dimished, we just love each other for much much much more than how much hair one has.

  • Kaz says:

    I love all the comments on this, I also found this arrtical throu hairy pits club, I stopped shaving my armpits and my feminine area no to long ago this is the first time I haven’t shaved my armpits I have always perfered my feminen regen unshaved I decided the other day I was tired of shaving because of people they try to my you feel bad. I have always strived to be different and I will keep that up I love looking like a women and women have hair I have always thought women who shave there feminen regen look childish and it always bothered me. But that being said I also believe what ever you choose to do with your body is up to you as long as it’s your choice and not someone else’s, that you should do it for yourself,not someone else 🙂

  • Maggie says:

    As a high school student in Europe some people might think that these standards don’t apply to us to the same extend, but they do. It doesn’t feel good to hide the fact that I am a feminist and avoid wearing sleeveless shirts in fear of being perceived as either repulsive and “gross” as well as an angry “man-hater”. I feel very alone when it comes to these thoughts at my school, and to me it’s just so weird that a lot of people don’t think twice about these things.

  • Stina says:

    I found your blog through the Hairy Pits Club. You are so strong! I didn’t stop shaving until I was 23 and I can only imagine what courage it takes to walk through your high school, hair and all. Stay strong, stay you. You are awesome.

    • Al Morr says:

      Not looked at the ‘hairy pits club’ for some time now, in fact, although that I am a man, they sort of adopted me to it for the kind comments that I made about women who did not shave their armpit hair off. I did notice that most of the women in the hairy pits club had at some time shaved under their arms but would “never again do so” only a very small percentage had never shaved or trimmed their armpit hair ever, I am very pleased to tell you that my girlfriend then wife was one of that very small percentage and I was very proud of her for not doing it.

  • Joe says:

    You go GIRL!!! Independent thinking is a rarity these days, with the onslaught of social media of all kinds, but I being an extremely independent thinker and way ahead of the curve, discovered at a very early age how wonderful the pubescent body of both genders became with budding growth of body hair!!! Not to mention the very crucial role body hair plays in the health and beauty of both genders!!! Think about it, why has mother nature provided this human “flower” to us, only to mow it down and dig it up like it was crabgrass!!! Did you know armpit hair has multiple functions!!! First, it’s a friction reducer, actually helping to prevent rashes on the skin surfaces of the armpit area!!! Second, it aids in the release and prevention of bacteria buildup when we sweat!!! Third, it provides a holding surface for the all important pheromones, which individually identifies us in our human sexuality, believe it or not, in the fostering of a compatible selection of our mates!!! Yep, all of this and more!!! butchering the skin with a razor blade here, creates rashes and irritations, that can lead to ingrown hair follicles, open sores, and then when a women applies aluminum salt deodorants here, creates a highway to hell because now these dangerous salts enter through the lesions in the skin to those subsurface armpit lymph nodes, which, guess what, are connected through the lymphatic system to the lymph nodes located in her breasts, particularly around the nipple area, that can lead to what you may ask??? BREAST CANCER!!! So ladies, you are actually killing yourselves when you practice this lunacy!!! If you appreciate what I have written here, I will expand this topic further, but please give me feedback, both positive and negative, I am a big boy, I can handle it!!! Thanks and good luck to you all!!!

    • Al Morr says:

      Hi Joe, like you I agree with all you have said, when I was 12 I noticed many men were hairy and some were not, I hoped that within a few years I would become like the hairy guys, I did not have to wait long, hair first grew on my pubes, under arms and soon after that my legs and forearms were covered with hair which was quite noticeable but I was so happy about that. By 16 I had chest hair, small at first but it soon grew to be quite bushy by the time I was 18. I also have a very hairy neck, these hairs extend down my shoulders making them very hairy as well. I then met a girl and noticed that she had hairy arm pits and when at swimming or on the beach I noticed some hair seeping under her bathing costume. She told me later that she had never shaved or trimmed any hair off her body, I was so happy about that, just a pity not all women are like that

  • Angie says:

    Thank you for posting this! I never had the chance to stop and think about it until now and it all makes sense.

    I have been shaving all my body ever since I can remember without knowing why. I guess when I was 11 or so I just wanted to do or follow the older girls to feel more adult and I just kept doing it and feeling awkward and even ashamed every time I for some reason had to be 2 or 3 days with stubble.

    Now I realise that exactly this hair is exactly what would make me look like an adult if I let it grow and I am now curious… how would I look like if I let it grow?

    Thank you again for this and for helping me open my eyes. Now I know that If I shave would be because I want to do it and if I don’t would be again because I don’t want to do it.

  • Steve & Carol Ann says:

    We are completely with you, Becca! You are a good writer and we’re betting you’ll have a bright future regardless of the abuse you’ve dealt with in high school. We are a married, older couple and the lady here threw away her razor 12 years ago. She sometimes gets stares and questions also but, luckily, rarely does she get judgmental or outright negative remarks.

    One important point to remember is that even though a lot of people apparently find female body hair to be a turn off, there are a lot of other people out here who find it to be a natural and erotic part of a woman’s anatomy.

    Respect!

  • Sue J Goldie says:

    This piece reminds me of a quote I heard from none other than Oprah Winfrey many years ago.

    I’m finally ready to own my own power, to say
    ‘This is who I am’.
    If you like it, you like it.
    And if you don’t, you don’t.
    So watch out, I’m gonna fly.

    We do not need to ‘overpower’ culture. But if we all speak out, speak the truth, be real and genuine, be kind to each other…..then we will change it.

    There are a lot of people in this world who think like you do. You go girl!

  • Laura says:

    First of, you have incredible talent. The piece really spoke to me. Being in high school also I pride myself in being different. I dress in things I want to wear and not what’s popular, and lately a group of guys have taken to terrorizing me because I’m a ‘hipster’. Plenty of times I tell them that I am not a hipster-I am myself, but that doesn’t stop the glares or name calling. But this article really helped, I feel as a feminist and being myself that I am part of something bigger. We can overpower culture, and that’s enough to keep going.

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