Shaving: Is It Necessary?

 (Photo: Flickr)

Shaving is made to be a really big deal here in America, especially amongst women. I don’t really know much about how it’s viewed in other countries, but I know it’s a very common practice here. This post will be focused on women shaving. Is it as necessary as it is made out to be?

I remember first having the idea of shaving my arms and legs probably when I was about twelve or thirteen years old. I felt so ashamed and disgusted of my body hair. All throughout my teenage years, I saw so many girls with smooth legs and arms and would feel bad because I felt like I was the only girl that haven’t shaved. Of course, I saw the many commercials on television about shaving products that showed women with perfectly smooth legs. I’ve always wanted my legs to look like that. I never wore shorts, skirts, or short sleeved shirts because I was so ashamed of my body hair.

I would ask my mom if she would buy me some razors or if it’s okay for me to shave. She would always tell me, “No. They’re just trying to sell that stuff. You don’t need to shave.” My mom never believed in shaving. I don’t think I’ve ever seen her shave in my life.

Of course, I didn’t believe her whenever she told me that. It was really disappointing when she never got me any razors or let me shave. I thought I had TOO MUCH hair. There is a such thing as TOO MUCH hair, right?

But, one day, I found a disposal razor in the house. It was probably from one of my brothers. My mom was gone to work. I was so happy! I took that razor and shaved my arms and legs. Sure, I had a few cuts because I didn’t have any shaving cream and it was my first time shaving, but it was worth it. I was hairless. I had no more unwanted hair! I’ve been shaving my body since that day.

But as I got older, I realized that my hair would grow back very fast. It seemed like it grew back as soon as I cut it. And, on top of that, my legs are pretty big and since I have a little height on me, they’re quite long, too. And that’s just my legs alone. That’s not even counting the other places I shave. So, shaving my body would take a really long time to do.

I started to feel like taking all this time shaving just wasn’t worth it if it’s going to grow back so fast. But I just knew I still wanted a smooth, hairless body like the women I saw on TV. So, I continued to shave, despite how long it took and how fast it grew back.

A few years ago, I talked to one of my dad’s friends about wanting to shave my legs. She told me, “You don’t need to shave. Your legs are beautiful the way they are. Besides, razors cut you up.” She basically said the same thing my mom said.

This story leads me to today. I recently did some research on women shaving. I wanted to know where it came from and why it is such a big deal here. During my research, I found that shaving wasn’t really a big deal here before the 20th century because women used to wear big dresses that pretty much covered their whole bodies, so people didn’t see women’s body hair very much. But after the 20th century, shorter dresses and skirts were invented. That’s when a lot of shaving companies began to promote smooth bodies and advertise shaving to women. More revealing swimsuits began to be invented as well. At that point, shaving companies began to target women for underarm hair.

So, my mother was right all along. They push all these ads because they ARE trying to sell this stuff! They want women to feel some type of way about their body hair so they can spend billions of dollars on shavers, razors, waxes, depilatories, shaving creams, and many other hair removal products. But something tells me it’s far deeper than advertisers wanting to make money off of making women feel some type of way about their bodies.

Why did they feel the need to target women on their body hair in the first place? Men can have just as much body hair as they want and they’re never made to feel ashamed of it. Of course, shaving companies market to them, too, but it’s like they can choose whether or not to shave and still be accepted by society. Women can’t. Women just either have to shave or be deemed as unattractive.

I never really found a good answer to this question of why women seem to be targeted more for their body hair than men, but it sounds like it comes from sexism and misogyny. I think it’s part of trying to make women feel ashamed of themselves and unequal to men.

Shaving is not necessary. Body hair doesn’t hurt anyone. We have just been conditioned to be disgusted by hair that grows on/in certain places, especially on women. People should not be pressured into shaving, no matter how much body hair they have or where it is. Body hair is completely natural. There’s a reason why it grows back so fast after shaving it. It belongs there!

We should all be free to accept our natural bodies as they are. As a matter of fact, I feel like most women wouldn’t shave at all if they weren’t made to feel ashamed of their body hair—much like men. Women shave because they’ve been told for many years that their body hair is unattractive.

Why I Started Blogging

Photo: Flickr

I feel like I did everything I wanted to do at my job. I know there is something better out there for me. I feel like my skills and intelligence greatly exceed my job. And, to be honest, I feel like the job is beneath me. Even though I love my job and the people I’ve met there, I know it isn’t really something I want to do long term. 

I want to do something that I feel would put my skills and intelligence to great and proper use. And, of course, I want to do something I love. One of my worst fears is going into a job I won’t like. I used to always hear so many people around me, including some of my family members, complaining about how much they hate their jobs and the people on it. I never wanted to be that person.

I also want to do something where I can work on my own terms and be my own boss. I just really hate having people telling me what to do. Not that I have anything against anybody I work with. It’s just that it gives me an uneasy feeling.

So, since I know I want a job that I will love and will be something I have the skills for and something where I can make my own moves, I asked myself, “Well, what do you like to do?”

I love reading and I think I love writing even more. So, I thought, “What can you do that involves reading and writing?” Suddenly, it hit me. BLOGGING! Long before I thought about blogging, I thought about making YouTube videos. I just knew I had all these things I wanted to say and get off my chest. But, then, I thought that I wouldn’t be very good of a speaker. Since I have social anxiety, I don’t speak to many people and I don’t get to say what’s on my mind very much.

Also, I have a very hard time forming the words I want to say when I get ready to speak in front of an audience. I figured that out through high school and college speech classes. I didn’t want to get on camera and forget things I want to say or take long pauses to think of what I want to say and I didn’t want to take all that time editing because I feel like I will be doing a lot of it. So, I eventually passed on that (I still really want to make YouTube videos, though. Maybe I’ll try it some time on a later date).

On the other hand, blogging is perfect! (And is as close to YouTubing as I will get for now.) Blogging involves a ton of writing and reading. I will read about all the topics I think about writing beforehand. I will also read many other blogs. The best part about this is I don’t have to answer to anyone! I can call my own shots. I can write and read about whatever I feel like.

This will be the perfect way to express myself without feeling like I’m facing a crowd. Writing about these things will be a perfect way for me to spread my thoughts and messages to many people. I was a little skeptic when I first thought of blogging as a job. But after some reading about blogging and seeing many other successful bloggers, I knew it was possible. So, I decided to put forth the effort in trying to learn as much as I can about blogging and gathering together many things I feel I should write about.

I titled my blog, “My Sparking Thoughts”, because every post will be about the things I think about and sometimes I feel like they hit me like a spark. My blog won’t be centered around one specific topic. I will be writing about many different topics and most of them will be about things I notice in our society that I feel should be addressed, but doesn’t get addressed enough.

Most of my posts will be titled as questions because, usually, whenever I think of something, it comes to me as a question first. I will also present them as questions because I want to hear other people’s answers to these questions as well. I think that will make for a very good conversation.

I’m very excited to start my blog and share my thoughts with as many people as I can. Welcome to my blog! I hope you all enjoy what I have to say.