Friends, I haven’t shaved my legs since November 2020. That’s eight months. My legs are furry. And you know what? I love not shaving! But I’ve got all kinds of mixed feelings about those leg hairs I’ve grown.
(This is an update to this article from February 2021.)
Practical Details First
I know you’re wanting to know some details about what natural leg hair is like for a woman. And here it is!
My leg hair is about 1 to 1 1/8″ long at its longest. (Yes, I’ve measured it.) It’s grown in very patchy with the bulk of the hair on the front and sides of my legs below my knees. From behind, you cannot tell I have any leg hair. I barely have any hair growth on my knees or above. When I shaved, I never shaved above the knee because my hair was fine and blonde. The hair is softer than I anticipated, and is dark brown like the rest of my hair. I’ve enjoyed the new sensations of the wind blowing my leg hair and swimming with leg hair. It feels comfortable and natural.
And yes, I’ve continued to shave my underarm hair and pluck my eyebrows.
Harder Than I Expected
The experience of not shaving my legs has brought up many feelings inside of me, and forced me to consider how I feel about my body as a whole. I’ve realized that I really don’t like or accept very many things about my physical body. Honestly, I’ve felt pretty sad while digging through all of these messy thoughts and feelings I have about myself. Clearly, I have some work to do in learning to love myself better.
Am I Pretty?
One of the questions I’ve faced is “What makes me pretty?” That question segues into others such as “Do I want to be pretty?”, “Why do I feel like I need to be pretty?”, and “Can natural leg hair cancel out my beauty?” As women, we’re often told that we need to look nice and put together. But why? Why does what other people see when they look at me matter so much? And why am I struggling to let it go? How come it is so hard to fully be myself?
The biggest struggle for me has been dressing up. It’s easy to have natural leg hair when you’re wearing pants and no one sees it. It’s a much different story when people can see your legs when you’re wearing a skirt or dress. I admit to wearing pants a couple of times when I wanted to wear a skirt because I feared someone would say something to me. I think it was sad to make a personal decision based on what strangers or friends may or may not do, say, or think.
That’s not the way I want to live my life!
No one has said a word to me about my leg hair—neither positive nor negative, except for my family. My 15-year-old nephew thinks it looks “gross,” but my 14-year-old son thinks it’s cool. My mother is pretty impressed that it’s grown so much. And my husband truly has no opinion either way and continues to say that he loves me no matter what.
I think the biggest source of judgment is within myself. Over the years as I’ve aged, I’ve let go of certain common beauty standards and embraced my grays, my natural curls, some of my curves, and my nearly make-up-free face. Those have been intentional choices that have come about slowly and did take time to getting used to them. With time, I think I can embrace my natural leg hair, too.
These Legs Were Made For Walking
As summer goes on, I’m happily taking my natural leg hair on vacation, wearing plenty of shorts and rocking my bathing suit. Carpe Diem! I’ll be back at the end of the year to give you a final update.