Your Bod

You don't *have* to shave your legs. Here's why.


Next time you pull out your razor and go to shave your legs, ask yourself why you’re doing it—why you ever started doing this. Did you start shaving because your leg hair was bothering you...or because you were always told that leg hair on women is gross?

I remember being in 7th grade and sitting on the floor during gym class, staring at my legs. I couldn’t stop thinking about the dark coating of hair on them. This had never bothered me before gym class, when the locker room situation brought me face-to-leg with the hairless legs of my classmates. But after school that day, I told my mom that I wanted to shave my legs. She sat down with me in my bathtub and taught me how to shave. I’ve shaved my legs 1-3 times a week since.

According to Vox, Women having hairless legs has been the societal norm since a 1915 edition of Harper’s Bazaar ran an ad featuring a virtually hairless model in a short dress with her arms above her head, declaring that underarm hair was "objectionable." Back then, women did not show much skin. This ad was shocking...and it made lots of girls who saw it want to be that model.

With the 1920s came short flapper dresses, and with short flapper dresses came more exposed skin and the desire for that skin to be smooth. Women’s razors and shaving products started being offered in the Sears Roebuck catalog in 1922, and it was all hairless from there.

Growing up comes with all kinds of firsts. First time wearing a bra, first time using deodorant, first time shaving, etc. However, one of these things is not like the others. Wearing a bra and using deodorant are normal and usually necessary for our own phsyical comfort, while shaving your legs is not. Unless you are a swimmer, leg hair has no effect on your daily activities. You can go shopping, read, dance and hang out with friends all the same regardless of your leg hair.

So why do we shave? If you feel the need to rid your legs of hair, reconsider before reaching for the razor. Do you really want to do this? Or are you just feeling pressures from society? While it can be nice to have smooth, silky legs, not shaving will save you time, money and effort! Do what feels right to you—and don’t listen to what other people say. You’re just as beautiful with or without leg hair.

Do you shave your legs? What do you think about growing your hair out?

We want to hear from you! Send us your weirdest body questions here (seriously, we'll answer anything!) and it just might get featured.


by Deanna Schwartz | 5/17/2019