Should Women Be Able To Participate In No Shave November?
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Should Women Be Able To Participate In No Shave November?

The answer to this is always yes.

378
Should Women Be Able To Participate In No Shave November?
Alibaba

“No Shave November” is a term I became familiar with my freshman year of college. It was just before Halloween, right before class began as I sat behind four or five guys talking about the parties they were going to and their costumes. I wasn’t eavesdropping, just overhearing the conversation while I texted my sister as one of the guys said, “Dude, I can’t wait until November. No shaving for a whole month!”

The rest of the guys nodded in agreement, which was followed by a girl in the corner of the room speaking up and saying, “Yeah, I love 'No Shave November'! It’s awesome.”

There was a pause where I looked up to see that the guys were looking at her with confusion. Then one said, “Girls have to shave their legs. It’s gross if they don’t.”

I’m pretty sure the rest of the girls in class — myself included — would’ve rioted had my professor not come in and started class the second after this conversation took place. So instead of talking about it, I was left to stew in my own anger, while most of the girls in class with me probably did so as well.

But every year come November, I hear the same arguments again and again on whether or not women can participate in "No Shave November", because once again, we love putting women’s bodies up for debate. And it’s a debate I’m tired of having, to be honest. Because the fact of the matter is that no woman is ever obligated to shave, ever, not just during the month of November. I don’t care how “gross” men think it is; women simply don’t have to. At the end of the day, women’s bodies — all women’s bodies — don’t belong to men or anyone else. They belong to themselves.

In eighth grade I made friends with the new girl in school and invited her over to my house one Friday afternoon in September. As we sat on the swings, she told me that a guy — not just a guy, but a guy I knew, had known since elementary school — had told her that her arms were too hairy and that she needed to shave them. I was angry, but not surprised. I was only 13 at the time and had my fair share of other boys in my grade degrading my own body, so I understood where she was coming from. How deeply it hurt. I remember that same year, one of my guy friends told me that my mustache was gross, and that’s when I started shaving my upper lip despite there being nothing there but a few wisps of blonde hair.

There is so much pressure from Western society to fit the narrow mindset on one idea of beauty: smooth and hairless — not to mention white, skinny, able-bodied, conventionally attractive, etc. — and I know so many women who struggle with it and so many women who try to reject it. I know girls who wax their body raw, who shave daily, because they don’t want to have to deal with people making comments about their body and how much hair they have. I also have girl friends who refuse to shave at all, because they’re too lazy or they just don’t care enough.

And I’m not anti-shaving. I’m not saying no one should ever shave again. I personally like the feeling of smooth legs every once in a while. What I am saying, however, is that women should not be obligated to shave. Teenage girls shouldn’t be shamed into shaving. Body hair is a natural and normal thing, whether it be on your legs or your arms or your upper lip or your eyebrows. All body hair is normal, be it light and thin or dark and coarse. There’s no shame in having it. It’s your body. Whatever you decide to do with it, that’s your choice. Of course, maybe it is easier for me to say this as a white woman who does fit into your conventional standards of Western beauty. At the end of the day, my struggles with my body are not the same as other women who don’t fit that narrow mold. My body — a white, thin, ciswoman, able-bodied one — is not scrutinized or criticized in the same way that women of color, fat, and/or trans women’s bodies are, and I recognize that and respect that, so when I talk about these issues, I understand that I’m always coming from a place of extreme privilege. Hopefully, though, I’m saying something meaningful enough that people will listen and agree.

And if women want to participate in "No Shave November" (or just no shaving forever), I say let them. Isn’t the whole point of "No Shave November" to increase awareness for prostate cancer? Are women suddenly not allowed to help men out if it puts their bodies at risk for being too “gross?"

So, when someone asks me if I think women should be able to participate in "No Shave November", my answer will always be, without a doubt, yes.

What will yours be?

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
The 100 Things Millennials have ruined: A Comprehensive List
http://www.factandmyth.com/the-middle-class/are-mi...

Millennials: the generation everyone loves to hate. The babies of 1980 to 1995 take a lot of heat. I mean, we inherited a crashed economy, earn stagnant wages, live with crippling student loan debt, and try to enact change in a rigged system but our affinity for avocado toast and use of technology has wrecked society as we know it! As a tail end millennial, I wanted to know what I was ruining and, like any other annoying millennial would, I did some research. I scoured the internet, read online newspapers and scrolled through every listicle I could find. So, in case you needed another reason to resent the millennial in your life, here are the 100 industries we've killed, things we've ruined or concepts we've destroyed.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Anxiety Doesn't Discriminate

This month, Odyssey brings about awareness & normality to conversations around mental health from our community.

3513
Anxiety Doesn't Discriminate

It's no secret that even in 2018 our country still struggles with discrimination of all kinds. Society labels individuals by the color of their skin, heritage, religion, sexuality, gender, size, and political beliefs. You are either privileged or you're not. However, here's the thing, anxiety doesn't care about your privilege. Anxiety doesn't discriminate.

Keep Reading... Show less
College Boy Charm is Real and it's Very Sexy
Disney

After surviving a year of college and watching "Clueless" countless times, I've come to the conclusion that college boy charm is very much a real thing and it's very very attractive. It's easiest explained through Paul Rudd's character, Josh, in "Clueless". The boy who has a grip on his life and is totally charming. In this article, I will list the qualities of a specimen with College Boy Charm, to help you identify him at your next party or other social events.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Tik Tok Stars: Worth the Hype? or Overrated?

As Tik-Tokers rise to fame, do their 'copy-cat' dances deserve the clout?

4732
Tik Tok Stars: Worth the Hype? or Overrated?
https://pixabay.com/photos/tiktok-social-media-app-tik-tok-5323007/

Oh, the wonders of social media. Trends come and go just as quick as a story on Instagram, everyone posting for their shot at fifteen minutes of fame, and the ever growing following of a new type of celebrity- social media influencers and content creators. Everyone who owns a smartphone probably has Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and now Tik-Tok, as it's growing to be a major social media platform for teenagers and young adults. Tik Tok became popular in the United States in late 2019 and since then has grown a considerable amount. Personally, I was one to make fun of Tik-Tok and say it was a dumb app like Musical.ly or Triller, and now months later, I spend more time on it than I do on Instagram.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Because self confidence is sexy

And as a woman, I want us all to love ourselves a little bit more today.

7990

Women have such high standards to live up to today. We’re expected to do and be so much. The great Tina Fey said “Every girl is expected to have Caucasian blue eyes, full Spanish lips, a classic button nose, hairless Asian skin with a California tan, a Jamaican dance hall ass, long Swedish legs, small Japanese feet, the abs of a lesbian gym owner, the hips of a nine-year-old boy, the arms of Michelle Obama, and doll tits. The person closest to actually achieving this look is Kim Kardashian, who, as we know, was made by Russian scientists to sabotage our athletes." This quote is not only hilarious, but also incredibly true! How many of you feel insecure every time you walk on campus, or every time you walk into a party? Even the girls you think are perfect are insecure. Everyone has flaws. Sure some flaws may be more exaggerated than others, but that doesn’t mean that the girl still feels bad about them. My point here is that it doesn’t matter how “perfect” you are, what matters most is how “perfect” you feel.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments