I'm just going to say what many women are thinking: Shaving your legs sucks.
That's why for years, when I've held good jobs, I had my legs waxed. Every three or four weeks, I'd spend 30 minutes, and about $50 (plus tip) to get the hair on my legs removed by a professional — and I wouldn't really think about it again until a month later. It was awesome. Then I went freelance, my budget was chopped by more than half, and while I'm a much happier person, regular pedicures and hair appointments were the first things to go. Last was the leg waxing, but it was either coffee or leg waxing and, well, I did mention I was a writer, right? Forgoing caffeine is pretty much not an option.
So I started shaving my legs again, and a few years later I still am, and it's not too strong a comment to say that I hate it. Why?
Access: Sure, shaving around your calves is mostly easy, but ankles and knees are totally uneven skin areas, and the backs of thighs (that's my impossible zone) are annoyingly hard to get to, and require torquing around — really fun if you are in a small shower stall! And forget about seeing what you are doing when it comes to the back of ankles, knees and thighs; you just have to shave away and hope for the best. Which brings me to ...
Bloodletting: It's ridiculously easy to cut yourself when in shaving areas you can't even see. I've ruined so many bath mats with blood from shaving cuts that my mats are now red and black. I'm not kidding.
Frequency: You have to shave several times a week to keep truly smooth legs — that's not a lot of bang for your shaving buck.
Imperfection: You'd think after four years of shaving my legs, I'd be able to get 99 percent of the hair when I shave. Not so. Each round I manage to miss several quarter-sized areas which I have to ignore, or go back and re-do. It's never a straightforward task.
Water waste: I take quick showers, but that time doubles when I have to shave my legs. When it's warmer out, I can handle turning the shower off while I shear my leg hair, but I keep my house cool in the winter to save energy and money — but then it's too cold to turn the shower off when I shave, so I end up wasting water, which is a bummer.
But it's November! That month when men forgo shaving their faces in support of cancer research — dubbed Movember, this worthy effort has raised almost $600 million to support research for cancers that affect men. November is also the month when, for most of the country, women's bare legs are covered with leggings, jeans, long skirts, and at the very least, tights. That combo means that it seems like a perfect time for us ladies to take a shaving break too.
Guys are the biggest complainers about girls having hairy legs. Seriously, while many of us ladies like a smooth leg too, it would be nice to have a break and not hear it from the peanut gallery, especially a peanut gallery who has no idea how annoying and time-consuming it is to keep legs totally smooth all the time. And while women express preferences for shaved faces (or conversely, for beards) sometimes, it's not quite the same as an overwhelming percentage of guys being "disgusted" by a woman's leg hair.
Let's all loosen up and remember that we are human beings, and also mammals, for which it is an identifying feature to have body hair. Do what you want with your own sproutings, but before you say it's an "obligation" for women to shave their legs (which plenty of male OKCupid users answered in the affirmative to in a typical question on the site) think about what it means that in most cases, men decide whether and how to shave their faces, whereas women are expected to keep their legs smooth at all times — otherwise they are just horrible and revolting creatures who are out to scare small children.
I'm taking a break and not shaving my gams this month. How about you?
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