To shave or not to shave? That is the question

As a 17-year-old female and aspiring journalist, being asked to write an article is one of the greatest honours I could wish for. But what about when the request is to write about pubic hair? Still such an honour? Well, kind of…

In my life, pubic hair is not a subject often discussed beyond an occasional funny story from a friend at a sleepover, or remarks on how smooth someone’s legs are after shaving. As teenagers, we all are unsure about what we’re doing about most things. Therefore speaking out and realising you’re doing something “wrong” is just too risky, especially in this department. So any questions? We don’t necessarily compare notes on such intimate subjects, let alone ask our mums, we just Google them.

Whilst resurrecting the age-old feminist debate about whether or not to shave our pits and bits, we must consider the pros and cons of body hair.

The hair bare bunch

teenagers in bikini1.) Personally, I think hairless looks nicer. Maybe you think your body looks better with hair! And that’s great too. You do you. The friends that I roped into assist my creativity throughout this article were united in favour of shaving. We feel it makes us neater and tidier.

2.) It was agreed that we all felt cleaner after shaving, which made us happier (woohoo). This is an interesting point, as shaving pubic hair off exposes us to more bacteria, so we’re probably entering the danger zone – razors in hand, without our fuzzy guards. Why is it we feel cleaner without body hair? Personally, I love feeling silky smooth – and this goes for all body hair. Getting into bed after shaving and moisturising really makes me feel like I’m a step closer to heaven.

3.) Shaving has rapidly become the done thing amongst young people. (Bear in mind, I am writing this from the perspective of a teenager, because I am one, that wasn’t a creepy alter-ego.) Shaving is just the norm for people our age. Not shaving is fine too, I am all for you hairy ladies, but fitting in as a teenager is admittedly extremely important, so taking the conscious decision to stand out is daunting. The majority of us teens don’t really know who we are yet, so it’s easy to be like everyone else. Porn has introduced ideals that are taken as fact, especially among teenage boys. Boys do not expect us girls to be hairy, so the majority of us take the easy road and shave it off. It doesn’t make it right or wrong, but it is what happens in today’s society. The reality of it is that most boys probably do not care, but the idea of being singled out and shamed for something so personal is indeed a terrifying prospect. They are probably conforming too.

4.) Post shaving, your swimwear choices know no boundaries. Swimwear, especially these days, is throwing some whacky designs at us. And those designs are not pube friendly, it has to be said. This is an example of why shaving for teenagers can seem like an easy option, but if you want to parade your pubes in the pool then that is cool too.

Bring back the bush

cutting the grass with lawn mower1.) I admit, shaving is unnatural. Why would the good lord bless us with furry legs, armpits and other…parts, just for us to hack it right off? It must serve some purpose; maybe warmth, during the colder times. Pubic hair is like eyebrows, but elsewhere. And where would we be without eyebrows? Full of conjunctivitis. Now, think about the bacteria that we are welcoming by saying goodbye to our pubic hair.

2.) The…efffffort….shaving is a commitment. Like a job that you don’t even get paid for. It takes time to keep it all smooth. Maybe we could be committed to better things…

3.) Shaving comes hand in hand with many awkward, uncomfortable side effects that no one seems to mention! Between cuts, razor rashes caused by scraping the skin surface, itching and unruly hairs that cause nasty boils as they grow back into the skin instead of out, shaving can be a pretty risky activity.

4.) You make your hair angry. Shave once? That hair will be back, thicker and darker than ever. Now you’re part of the shaving cycle, your body hair will never let you out.

5.) By shaving, you’re conforming! Yes, we teens feel a strong need to fit in but being an individual is one of the most important things in life. Girls should not base their choices on what they think boys would prefer – you should decide what you want! A boy who doesn’t want to be with you based on your fluffy pits and bits is not a boy that you should want to be with. Easier said than done, but we have to ask ourselves if we are doing it because it makes us happy, or because we are bowing to a porn-driven demand.

So, if you’re in limbo about shaving your hair, there is some food for thought. Some hair for growth (not a saying, but relevant.) Please leave your thoughts below about shaving body hair and join our debate!

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