Wednesday, 6 July 2011
Wax on, wax off...
Hair is obviously a bit of a theme this month, now I am considering a move..ahem..further down the body. I have become aware of what is possibly another great age divide, the waxing, pruning and trimming of our lower abdomen.
Here I really can nail my colours to the mast. I regard full waxes and strips ‘down there’ to be physically repulsive. For me at best they are imitative of porn stars, done so all the ‘action’ can be filmed (even the positive comparison is icky) at worst it is redolent of naked small pink mammals at birth. A denuded woman looks like a pre-pubescent child, I don’t even want to go there. On all counts it is repellent. Thats why there are no images in this post apart from Whyatt's cartoon, they are all quite gross and some readers of this blog might be enjoying a sandwich.
However I gather that this is becoming, for women under 30 a ‘standard’ part of their grooming regime. Well people can do what they want with their private parts but WTF can be the reason for this adoption of nastiness? Well I can see that a really hairy bush could be off putting but surely if you are standardly European a bit of tidying up is all you need. Perhaps some people are phobic (menaced by an angry guinea pig in childhood, who knows?).
Apparently it is viewed as hygienic, well it isn’t. Underarms can trap sweat in the summer but this is a different party of the body. Legs look nice shaved because we wear stockings, but to be honest unless you are hairy shaving legs is not terribly necessary and shaving/waxing legs, cuts and allergies aside, has no health ramifications. Shaving and waxing in the lower area however increases the likelihood of infection, disease and ingrown hairs dramatically. No doctor would recommend it and those parts of the body are no longer shaved prior to operations because of the known risks.
If you consider the fact that this is the case in a clinical setting how stupid is having this done in a commercial beauticians? A little known fact is that I used to license beauty salons; they are never ever clinical level clean no matter how sparkling they look and are in fact not expected to be. Why would you have your private parts fiddled about with in such an environment?
The final nail in the coffin of the hygiene argument is the ugh factor. Don’t these people wash in this area as a given? Do they just want a wet wipeable area? Surely you’d only notice any problems if you were a bit unhygienic? Is shaving here a sign that people are in truth a bit grubby.
So what about aesthetics? I have referred to porn already, is the motivation the nagging suspicion that men/boys expect it? There doesn’t seem to be any basis for this, a bit of tidying up is nice and an excessively hairy women might (not always though) put them off but they don’t much seem to care. They never do, same applies to nice underwear and killer perfume. Mind you the odd stupid sexist comment does crop up. A woman who Brazilians is ‘expecting men to look at her parts and might be a bit loose’. So the usual fine in the pages of Loaded but not on my girlfriend stuff. But it appears that all the gents want is cleanliness and a bit of trimming.
What about bikinis and performers? I can see that the latter might have to be a bit more circumspect, but womankind has survived bikini wise for several decades without agent orange applied to their lady parts. Who is taking a magnifying glass to you anyway? I am amused by tiny bikinis, so you shave everything off, just to cover it again with a tiny triangle that mimics pubic hair, but with spangled fabric.
I wouldn’t mind this if it was about fun, women dying their bits pink or having Micky Mouse tattoos on their mounds of Venus or something. But young British women regarding being waxed to hell and looking like a plastic doll or camp survivor as basic necessary beautifying is something I find really worrying. I cannot help think it is linked to a tendency to self-hate, men are not making us do this to ourselves nor are they doing it to themselves. In this endless search for perfection things get warped, being totally hairless is as freaky as being covered in hair. It is painful, it is unnecessary, it is expensive, it is time consuming and it is unhealthy. In my own opinion it looks awful. It is not like a manicure, ordinary neat clean nails are not considered unacceptable but for some bizarre reason young women find the existence of body hair repulsive when they should find its absence creepy. I’m not advocating a lack of grooming or the cultivation of lady forests that resemble guardsman’s busbys. I just don’t like the extremism, the body hate and the invasiveness of the strip/Brazilian. If you love it, fine. Some women love tattoos/piercings, some hate them. The difference is that these body modifications are a choice, not a required or expected routine activity. Personally I cannot get my head around wanting to look like a child/sex worker/unwell person.
Do you agree/disagree? Comments welcome.