- July 18, 1999 at 12:00 am #10218
What do people think of women who do not shave their legs and/or armpits? I have heard only extreme views (either from those who really support it or really do not support it) and want to hear some views that offer an attempt at a logical reason for holding the view. I find logic often does not play a role in these things, but would like to hear people’s reasoning behind their views, anyway.
User Detail :Name : Kay26744, Gender : F, Religion : Agnostic, Age : 20, City : Tampa, State : FL Country : United States, Education level : 2 Years of College, July 21, 1999 at 12:00 am #19674
Since I tend to value non-conformity for its own sake, I rather admire women who don’t shave. I don’t see any logical reason to shave. It is time-consuming, and it just grows back tomorrow. In my experience, shaving any part of a body (female or male) is more of a cultural norm related to a society’s or individual’s esthetic sense of beauty, gender role conformity and/or sexual attraction. Whatever a woman chooses to do is fine with me.
User Detail :Name : DykeOnByke, Gender : F, Sexual Orientation : Lesbian, Race : White/Caucasian, Age : 48, City : Southfield, State : MI Country : United States, Occupation : Engineer; corporate diversity council member, July 21, 1999 at 12:00 am #34941
I realize a lot of my opinions on this are nothing more than cultural conditioning, but I’m turned off by hair on women’s legs. I have less of a problem with armpit hair. I think it comes from wanting the females I’m with to be smooth and somewhat soft. A great deal of the attraction men have toward women is that they are different from us. I view men as hairy, smelly and for the most part kind of gross – qualities I don’t want to have anything to do with. I think if men had breasts, we wouldn’t have the obsession with them that many of us do.
By the way, I prefer that the women I date be tougher than hell. I hate “girly girls,” but I don’t want their toughness to come from looking like the typical testosterone-charged male. I understand that many women are trying to break out of the roles that are expected of them, and I support that. It won’t change my preferences, though.
User Detail :Name : Brian23039, Gender : M, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Age : 33, City : Minneapolis, State : MN Country : United States, Occupation : Temp, Education level : 4 Years of College, Social class : Lower class, July 21, 1999 at 12:00 am #45888
I can only speak for myself and say that I prefer a shorn woman. If I were to break it down further, I could say that I don’t mind hair under the arms as long as it’s completely grown out and soft, and am very much against leg hair. The only reasoning I can find for this is as a cultural extension of evolution. Men are able to grow a beard so they can be distinguished from women, even at a distance. Men have grown to appreciate the hairless quality of a woman’s face, and now their bodies. (Of course there’s also a large contingent that finds a woman’s shorn pubic hair attractive.)
Obviously these are cultural issues and differ region to region. But perhaps these views grew as clothing became more revealing. As men could see women’s legs, they wanted them to adopt feminine qualities. I hope that helps some.
User Detail :Name : Jeff-C31155, Gender : M, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : White/Caucasian, Age : 30, City : New York, State : NY Country : United States, Occupation : Actor, July 21, 1999 at 12:00 am #45976
Shaving my legs and my underarms has been optional for me since my late 20s. At that time I recognized the unfair contradiction that women (at least in the United States) are nearly always considered unclean if they are unshaven but, that men are not. (I recognize that some businesses require a clean-shaven male face. However, this requirement is not the same as the societal expectation – or should I say demand – that women must always appear hairless under their arms and on their legs.)
Furthermore, shaving daily under my arms is painful, and I am simply not interested in engaging in behavior that is painful just to meet other people’s standards of beauty. Shaving my legs is simply time-consuming. So now, because I like the way smooth legs feel, I shave my legs once or twice a week during the summer; in the winter when I wear pants or tights, I shave my legs far less frequently. As for my underarms, I shave maybe once or twice a year – whenever I feel the clean-shaven look is better with my sense of style of the moment. Such a decision is similar to one regarding my choice of earrings or shoes. In other words, my shaving behavior is as much a choice as that made by many men.
In closing, I would like to mention that my significant other doesn’t care either way; when we first met, he was attracted by my sense of independence and lack of attention to certain societal expectations, and his attitude hasn’t changed. (In fact, when I get in the mood to shave my underarms, he is always a little startled because it’s such a contrast.) Even though we often have to interact with his business associates, my chosen hirsuteness has not caused him concern.
User Detail :Name : Kim Smith-Stout, Gender : F, Race : human, Religion : Atheist, Age : 36, City : Tempe, State : AZ Country : United States, Education level : Over 4 Years of College, July 23, 1999 at 12:00 am #30806
I think the general thought is that women who don’t shave should not go out in public. This is an American cultural opinion. Many women in other countries never did shave, although they do now because of “American style” influence on world fashion culture. But that is really all it is: A fashion style. Some people try to make it into a philsophical discussion, but it isn’t/shouldn’t be. As long as you are happy, and the person you are seeing is happy, then do it if you want and don’t do it if you don’t want.
User Detail :Name : Amanda31520, Gender : F, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : Creole, Religion : Baptist, Age : 19, City : Boston, State : MA Country : United States, Occupation : Student, Education level : 2 Years of College, Social class : Middle class, July 23, 1999 at 12:00 am #31628
Although I am not in the demographic that you were seeking a response from, I am a young male who shaves his legs and under his arms. I am not transgendered, transexual or a transvestite (although I am bisexual). I shave because I like the way it looks and feels. As another poster said, body hair on men makes them look gruff and smelly and testosterone-charged, which is not how I like to be percieved. I actually started doing it when I noticed that swimmers in my dorm room were shaving their legs for speed in the pool, and I was really attracted to how it looked and started doing it myself. I do not find it to be painful or time-consuming or a hassle, but actually enjoy it. When done regularly it takes me a whole five extra minutes in the shower. Also, it does make sex feel a lot better.
User Detail :Name : Dondi M., Gender : M, Sexual Orientation : Bisexual, Race : White/Caucasian, Religion : Atheist, Age : 27, City : Vancouver, State : NA Country : Canada, Occupation : Systems Administration, Education level : 2 Years of College, Social class : Upper middle class, July 23, 1999 at 12:00 am #41821
My decision to stop shaving my legs was based on logic. I hated doing it, and couldn’t think of a good reason to continue. “Just because most other women do it” didn’t really seem like a good reason. My husband doesn’t mind a bit; in fact, the last time I did shave he asked me why I bothered if I didn’t like it.
User Detail :Name : Kay, Gender : F, Race : White/Caucasian, City : E. Lansing, State : MI Country : United States, Occupation : Graphic artist, Education level : Over 4 Years of College, July 23, 1999 at 12:00 am #46909
I have always found the tradition a little disturbing. There seems to be a need to make adult women look prepubescent by not having body hair, and using makeup to make their eyes look big. If a 30-year-old man said, “I met a wonderful girl today,” no one would think anything of it, as opposed to a 30-year-old woman saying that she met a wonderful boy, which would sound like she was dating a 10-year-old. There was even a trend for women to wear babydoll dresses, which, in Rosemary’s Baby, was used to make her seem like a child caught up in an adult world.
User Detail :Name : Craig, Gender : M, Race : White/Caucasian, Age : 37, City : Minneapolis, State : MN Country : United States, July 29, 1999 at 12:00 am #44584
Though some men find bald legs and armpits more appealing, I know I’d have been wisest to have avoided shaving anything. Doing so causes ingrown hairs and irritation, both directly after and when the hair grows in again, meaning that I may be hairless, but I also have a good number of bumps, scars and sores. I do intend at some point to stop or find a better method, but find that even the stubble bothers me, and I’d rather get rid of it, though it starts the cycle again. In contrast, a dark-haired friend who’s never shaved looks quite presentable, as does another who stopped several years ago; it’d take that long for my scars to fade. I really resent those who pressured me to start mutilating myself like this in the first place – and my own weakness in giving in.
User Detail :Name : Auth23411, Gender : F, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Age : 17, City : London, State : NA Country : Canada, August 17, 1999 at 12:00 am #35657
I have very light body hair, and that does make a diffence; I only shave my legs when I feel like it. Many women with dark hair feel they do not have this choice. As for underarm hair, I shave for hygeine reasons, as the hair is a breeding ground for bacteria (which is what causes underarm odor). Some men smell so bad even with deodorants that I wish they would shave their pits, too.
User Detail :Name : Kelly, Gender : F, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : White/Caucasian, Religion : Lutheran, Age : 30, City : Brooklyn, State : NY Country : United States, Occupation : Overnight stocking, Education level : 2 Years of College, Social class : Middle class, September 13, 1999 at 12:00 am #42680
I am female and appreciate both shaven and unshaven. There are advantages to each. My leg hair is pretty fine, so my legs are soft in different ways whether or not I shave. Sometimes I prefer the soft downy fuzz of hair, sometimes the smooth softness of shorn skin. I always do shave my armpits, though, for the practical reason that I sweat more and stink more if I dont’
User Detail :Name : Robin, Gender : F, Sexual Orientation : Bisexual, Race : White/Caucasian, Age : 26, City : Tempe, State : AZ Country : United States, Education level : Over 4 Years of College, Social class : Middle class, September 25, 1999 at 12:00 am #15089
Let me begin by saying that your own timetable for shaving is sound. However I disagree with your opening thesis taht there is a gender contradiction. In this country men ARE considered unclean if they are not shaven. Ask most men how many times a week they shave and you’ll see that the shaving industry is making a bundle; most of it from men. Think about this:what percentage of men sport a moustache? Not many. Even fewer have beards. [The goatee, is even losing steam. And there are many men who shave their backs and bodies b/c many people find it unattractive. So what is going on here? I agree with the respondant who says that men are, on the whole, hairier than women [my wife never has to shave her legs, for example]. Fashion and then culture has extrapolated this so that it is considered more appropriate for women to be as hairless as possible. But this has affected men too; as far fewer men wear facial hair than even fifty years ago.
User Detail :Name : Victor, Gender : M, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : Hispanic/Latino (may be any race), Age : 29, City : Queens, State : NY Country : United States, Occupation : teacher, Education level : 4 Years of College, Social class : Middle class, April 30, 2001 at 12:00 am #17288
I quit shaving my legs and pits about 15 years ago. At that time, my legs were about as hairy as a man’s, and the dreaded stubble would show up by the next day (or even the same day) – not to mention all the little ingrown hair bumps associated with shaving – what a pain! One day I just said “to hell with THIS” and never shaved again. Now my legs are almost hairless. Go figure. This happy outcome was not expected. (The pits, on the other hand, are still as hairy as ever – but I don’t mind, and neither does my boyfriend).
User Detail :Name : Rosie, Gender : F, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : White/Caucasian, Religion : Agnostic, Age : 41, City : Cambria, State : CA Country : United States, Occupation : computer geek, Education level : Less than High School Diploma, Social class : Middle class, April 30, 2001 at 12:00 am #32831
I see nothing wrong with shaving or not shaving; it should be an individuals choice.
User Detail :Name : Bob, Gender : M, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Disability : Paralyzed, Race : White/Caucasian, Religion : Episcopalian, Age : 58, City : E. Greenwich, State : RI Country : United States, Education level : 2 Years of College, Social class : Middle class,
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