the gallant act of hair removal

There are three kinds of people: those who shave, those who don’t and ones who talk about it in a smartassed manner.*

Today, I shall reflect on the gallant act of hair removal.
*And I am lazy. Sometimes. Add two and two, folks.

It never fails to evoke awe in me how the sight of my own hair on my calves and arms jutting out in pride make me queasy.
I’m growing out the two moustaches above my eyes (thank you, random women at many salons for granting me the power of the porn star eyebrows, but gee, no thanks. I look looked like Voldemort. Almost.)

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If I was watching myself scrutinize my eyebrows around a minute back, I’d make fun of me like a machine gun on the roll on a Monday morning.

But the extent to which my sensibilities are conditioned to expect a refined countenance is scary. The flood of coiffed images around us and our expectations to look/be hairless as a baby’s bum…
It easily changes from ‘must get waxed again’ to ‘MY ARM JUST SPROUTED ANOTHER HAIR!’

So try this fun exercise sometime: the next woman you see, imagine her with armpit hair (is it you, Captain Sweat Stains?)

Chances are that your thoughts are varied and far from writhing in fascination.
I’m all for Let’s Grow Our Armpit Hair and I know, I know, it just doesn’t go with the pretty dresses and tops and all that jazz… we’ve quickly forgotten what the body’s default mode is like.
The body is known to sprout hair in its natural state.

Everyone has hair everywhere.
- Ritika Upadhyay

Laser hair removal procedure-vending centres seem like these covert drug dealers where you’re handed out annual supplies of an addictive, hairless skin…¬†Look at Veet. You show me a butter-smooth arm and wipe some cream off it and you’re telling me it will dissolve my arm hair into the thin air?

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Where’s your hair, liar?

They pop up the following day. NOT MUCH HELP.

Between trying out that new razor for the first time or contemplating the virtues of getting waxed over the former, we should spend sometime with our body hair. The unsightly kind too. Actually, unsightly body hair in particular, because we’re always in this race to look like what we’re *supposed* to.

Just looking at yourself and acknowledging all that hair is a strange experience everyone’s gotta know before rushing in to get it all off their chests.

Because if it isn’t you or me, then it’s some other dude who goes ahead and makes fun of people for having hair on their face, which is as redonkulous as someone pointing at my feet and laughing because there isn’t one, but in fact, two of them!

Looking good is great but it’s not always about looking a perfect ten. You look good now, what about 50 years later when your skin sags and you have spots and more¬†unsightly hair popping up in parts of your body you had never known existed? Throw in some cataract or twisted, gnarly bones… You no longer qualify for the race.

Will you make fun of yourself? (You should.)

Body hair remains a personal choice and I don’t care what you shave and how much you shave it. Just be real about it.

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5 thoughts on “the gallant act of hair removal

  1. I like being a guy because there is a lot less pressure to shave/wax (although some guys these days do as much as women). I have a beard and hairy arms and my students often tell me to shave, but I just laugh at them. No. Way. :)

  2. As more and more men start shaving their legs and chests I wonder where they get the time. Shaving my face one or twice a week is time-consuming enough, and even that is rather nonsensical if I sit down and think about it.

    From time to time, I do allow my face to push out the hairs, which seem to serve no purpose, but must have some evolutionary reason for doing what they do, far enough for them to be called a beard and moustache.

    Problem is, when I look at my reflection, I’ve been shaving for so many years it seems as ridiculous not to, as for a woman to start donning a false beard. And yet there is no real difference in the concepts, as both are provably false facial conditions. They are unnatural. If lots of men shave them off, why shouldn’t women put them on. For extra warmth, for instance, or simply so we can recognise the opposite sex?

    How do supposedly intelligent beings allow ourselves to get into this state?

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