When I was in seventh grade I told my mom I wanted to start shaving my legs. I’m not sure I needed to, as the hair I had was still peach-fuzzy, but others my age were doing it and I didn’t want to be the odd girl out. She wasn’t sure I needed to do it, either, but she acquiesced for the same reason I wanted to do it.
Had she offered to let me get waxed anywhere (bikini, legs, underarms), I probably wouldn’t have done it because the razor was a novelty and part of the “fitting in” experience, particularly at camp where the girls in my bunk would all shave their legs together (God knows why). But looking back now on what a nuisance shaving is, I should have done it in a heartbeat if she’d been willing. And when my daughters get to the age where they need to shave (bikini, legs, underarms), I will try and convince them that waxing is the way to go.
There’s been some buzz lately about waxing and young girls, like this article in The New York Times. I think I’m supposed to be outraged even that some places are advertising waxing specials (like the one above to the left) for young girls, but I’m not. I think it’s practical and no big whoop.
Now, if someone wanted to give a Brazilian wax to a young girl, I think that’s icky and sexualized and gross.
But regular old bikini and leg waxes, or even lips or eyebrows? I don’t see a problem. Especially if you’re a girl with a unibrow or some hair above your lip, or the hair on your legs is dark or you need a bikini wax.
It’s a lovely idea to think young girls should be made to feel beautiful, unibrow, moustache or leg hair be damned. But I don’t live in that world and, frankly, I don’t know anyone who does.
I suppose girls shouldn’t feel like they have to shave, but the stark reality is that if you don’t wear deodorant and you have body odor, if you don’t wear a bra and you have large breasts, if you don’t shave (or wax) and you have hair in places where most girls don’t (probably because they get rid of it somehow), chances are people will notice, and not in a nice way.
Should they notice in an unkind way? In an ideal world, no. But someone usually will, and I don’t envision that ever changing. Tween and teen girls can be cruel. So why not eliminate the fodder?
Do you have a problem with young girls getting waxed?