Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Shaving legs and armpits

It's Appearance Season, so here's another post on looking good.

Hair on legs and under the arm: what's the best solution?

Now I was never very hairy in 'old mode', but what I had distressed me to the point of phobia. From early on I definitely had a fetish about being scrupulously clean-shaven, and free of all horrible hair - apart from the hair on the top of my head, of course, which I cherished and marvelled at. So I never had a beard or moustache - ugh, the very thought - and never experimented with 'designer stubble' (I always thought these were all just excuses for not shaving anyway). I consciously wanted a cure for facial and body hair. Shaving seemed to be the only easy method (I was ignorant about electrolysis and lasering, although I'd heard of wax treatments), but it was no good for the parts you couldn't reach, such as on your back. I had a little hair there - not much, but it made me feel unclean and ashamed. I covered-up as much as possible. I felt I had no 'body beautiful', because of the disfiguring hair on it. This was quite apart from being flabby and out of proportion, in my eyes anyway - although, oddly, many other people thought the opposite.

Back onto topic.

After more than two years on hormones, my body hair is now in a weakened state. All the hairs, everywhere, have either 'vanished' (still there but invisible), or, if shaved, grow back slowly and thinly - weedy willows, rather than stout oaks. For the sake of perfect appearance, I like to shave under my arms twice a week, but three times a fortnight would be quite acceptable. I can get away with shaving my legs much less often. Twice a month is more than enough for everyday outings with thighs, knees and calves exposed to the idle scrutiny of the hoi polloi.

What I'm saying is that simple shaving is (for me) a reasonably low-maintenance solution at very little cost - really just the expense of some additional shaving gel, because the Gillette razor refills are needed anyway for ordinary facial shaving (likely to continue for some time yet, until electrolysis finally gets rid of the remaining facial stubble).

So, would it be worth considering any alternatives?

One of my friends, more than a year ahead of me, is having all her body hair lasered. It will be completely banished, avoiding all future shaving or other treatments. A once-and-for-all solution, but obviously at some cost, although sheer ongoing convenience is clearly a big factor. She will be able to go on an extended holiday far away from well-equipped bathrooms, and not get hairy. And, for all time, have a perfect bikini-line (she loves the beach).

I think my leg and under-arm hair is probably just about dark enough to be lasered too. Should I consider this?

Or shall I just devote an hour to shaving my hands, arms and legs every two or three weeks? With the propsect of it all getting less and less as time goes on, as the hormones continue to do their work?


  1. I've had all over laser. So far this year, one solitary hair has had the tenacity to appear under arm. Swiftly dealt with my laser girl :)

    I have just bought a Phillips Lumea (sp?) home IPL to touch up legs and arms - it's OT much more than a single clinic session, and whilst it may be less powerful, like you I find the hair less potent now so hopefully it will keep the fine hair in check.

  2. I have been through electrolysis for seven months and my face is now half clean. I use the epilator to remove arm and hands hair and shave legs and pits. I have never had body hair. Like you I hated the hair, it was the one thing that truly made me unhappy.

    I find the epilator works on my arms they are now clean and what regrowth I have needs just touch ups every six weeks or so.

  3. I use a body shave for under the arms and empilator for legs and arms. Last for about 3 to 4 weeks. I found using a razor caused too many sores.

  4. No blades for me! I use an epilator on my armpits and legs, and occasionally on my arms. Also this one annoying spot in the small of my back. All-over laser sounds very attractive, although I don't know whether that I have is dark enough to respond. I would love to be entirely hair-free except on my head!

  5. Without getting into, weather you should shave or not, (Kinda silly question to let others decide.) Doing body maintenance seems a good way to communicate with your physical self. We spend intense hours on laying eye shadow or lipstick anyway.

  6. My experience of laser is that it's not as permanent as I'd wished. One year after initial treatment ended the hair under my chin has returned. But I'm cursed with a hairy body, so perhaps that was to be expected.

    It just goes to show that we're all different, so no course of treatment suits everyone.


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