Body hair…we all have it, but it seems like when women are getting ready for that first date or a special night out body hair is public enemy #1. Why all the pressure to wax, tweeze and shave? Since when are women supposed to be hairless on every part of their body? Especially the parts that aren’t exposed?
I blame magazines like Cosmopolitan, Maxim, and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, as well as internet pornography. The images of women are either airbrushed to look like the women have no body hair or the body hair has been ripped out in some form or fashion. In order to wear some of the clothes, underwear or swimsuits, models often have to remove copious amounts of body hair. Same for the women appearing in pornographic movies. Although, to be fair, this happens to guy models and porn stars as well (see Steve Carell below). I guess if I was going to be paid a lot of money to model, I’d sacrifice my body hair. However, many women are paying lots of money to have this done even though they aren’t going on the next Swimsuit cover. This has given both men and women the illusion that women either don’t or shouldn’t have body hair.
So, what’s a girl to do when she thinks she may be exposing any of those hairier body parts? She makes an appointment for a wax or other type of painful hair removal. Unfortunately, most women feel the pressure to look similar to the women on magazine covers. A lot of young women are paying a lot of money for hair removal from their face, legs and even their arms. They also pay a lot of money to remove hair from other more sensitive areas. It is very, very painful, yet many women do it because they want to feel accepted. They don’t want to be rejected by a guy who may be expecting what he has seen on magazine covers and on the internet.
Men also have pressure to wax or remove hair from their bodies as well. It may not be as much as women but a lot of men feel their chest and especially their back should be free of hair. If you’ve ever seen the 40 Year Old Virgin, then you’ve seen Steve Carell go through the process of waxing of his chest hair. You know it isn’t a pretty procedure, yet guys feel they have to look a certain way to be accepted as well.
I obviously preach being yourself. However, I’m very aware of the pressures to fit in. I’m not a big fan of pain, but I know what it is like to want to look good for someone else. I really think it is up to you how far you want to go when it comes to personal hygiene. I can’t say that removing all your body hair is wrong. It may make you feel better about yourself. If all that pain is really worth it to you, then go for it. Just know that not all guys think having all your body hair waxed off is sexy. Just like some women don’t mind a man with a hairy chest.
When it comes down to it, you fall in love with a person…body hair and all. You may feel like you have to go the extra mile to impress someone at first, but hopefully you don’t have to go to such extreme lengths to keep them. We are all human. I think it is unrealistic to expect people to look and be perfect all the time. It just isn’t possible. I also don’t think it is healthy to compare yourself to this year’s Sports Illustrated Swimsuit models. Comparisons usually leave people feeling bad about themselves. Try to focus on all the great things you have to offer and try not to fight fate so much. It may be worth it to learn to accept parts of yourself, body hair and all, instead of trying to change everything to imitate some unrealistic ideal. If you want to imitate something, try watching young children just be themselves. Remember how it was to not be so overly self conscious? Work to get some of that back, because I think it would be great if we were all a little more like that!!