I remember when my brother first visited us in Puerto Rico, he mentioned to his wife how Puerto Rican women don’t remove the hair on their hands. He was disgusted. He looked so disappointed and somehow he made it seem so unwomanly and not feminine.
In contrary, I remember how a friend accidentally rubbed his hand on my arms and noticed how I was hairless and smooth. He was shocked. You shave? he asked. Why? My friend thought the idea of hairy arms to be normal. Is it?
Two different societies that concluded to two different outcomes and thoughts on something so simple and that has nothing to do with another’s opinion. Why does a woman’s decision touching herself in any way be the societies’ problem?
Personally, and I can’t bolden the word enough, I feel like it’s part of my hygiene. I grew up in an Azerbaijani society where women had to be feminine, had to take care of themselves, constant beauty salon time, and the ability to please the man in your life. Azerbaijan is the country of that Barbie-like world where women please men by looks. Later, moving to Canada was something similar. Women of all cultures with different views and looks of what one should look like surrounded the environment. I remember how my classmates in grade 8 would gossip how they are shaving their arms. It all depended, especially if you had blonde hair or darker.
Moving to Puerto Rico, the women didn’t care about hair on their hands. It was pretty simple. Have smooth legs, don’t care about the hands. Upfront. Simple. The men didn’t complain either. I wasn’t disgusted, neither was I in shock. I realized shortly that a woman’s body is a choice. The woman decides how to be, how to act, and how to look. No discussion.
However, every society and even religion has it’s vision of what a woman should look and act like. Yet, we stumble upon this issue where women are breaking through all the expectations yet even though we support it, do we really? Do the people that say I’m fine with it really fine with it? I personally support the idea of having your armpit hair grow, leg hair grow, etc yet I don’t feel comfortable with it. I find it to be a little exotic, even.
My conclusion in general is no matter where you are, in what society you’re in – you’re going to be the woman of your dreams because you’re the one that’s in control. With hair or hairless, overweight or skinny – you’re a woman. A woman that controls herself.