Hello! Good evening, good morning and goodnight!
Yes, my kinky bedfellows, today I continue on with the topic of sexual trends, and trends to make you more sexually attractive. Although, if you’ve read the last blog, then you’ll know how I feel on vajazzling, and that I don’t really consider it making you sexually attractive. In the last post, I discussed waxing, so it seems only natural to talk about hair removal in general.
Again, I have to go back to 30,000 BC. You’d think that, since it was the middle of the ice age, it would be fashionable to keep as much hair as possible, since it would keep them warm, but no. The need to make ourselves sexually desirable has won out over the need to keep ourselves alive has been going on for thousands of years. It’s a wonder we’re still here! Though I suppose with all that fucking then of course some of us would survive. And it makes me happier. Now, when I tell people that one of the things on my bucket list is to go to the south pole and prance about naked, I can say it’s just in my nature. Back then we men used our flint multitools. Gillette disposables hadn’t been invented yet. Women, however, made the first depilatory creams, from harsh substances like quicklime and arsenic. These abrasive materials burned off unwanted hair, but would frequently harm skin in the process. So like modern creams, then.
Jump ahead 27,000 years and some of the first non-disposable razors were used in Egypt and India. Possible through advancements in metalworking, these copper razors were often customized and decorated with carvings and designs. Even then it was popular to remove not just pubic hair, but hair from everywhere. And I mean everywhere, dude. Alexander the Great’s shaving obsession increased the practice’s popularity, leading to the construction of some of the first barbershops. Did those barbers talk incessantly all the time, too? At this same time, Roman women were starting to use shaving razors too, as well as tweezers, pumice stones and depilatories. It wasn’t uncommon for women to go bald. But this practice seemed to die down – at least, there were no notable bald women, or evidence of such – until the early Middle Ages, where it was very fashionable for woman to be completely hairless — even on their heads, which allowed them to wear the large, ostentatious wigs and headpieces that were in style. To remove hair on their eyebrows, heads and necks, women plucked and shaved nearly every day. Sometimes, even the eyelashes were plucked out. Had they never heard of taking a pause for the cause?
1500: The Aztecs in Central and North America were using shaving razors fashioned from volcanic obsidian glass, which was sharp and effective, but sometimes fragile.
1600s: European women kept their faces, foreheads and eyebrows plucked or shaved, in the trend of Queen Elizabeth.
But, again, fashions ebbed and flowed. It became fashionable again to be quite hairy. Sort of – the concept of the safety razor was introduced in the 1700s, and women still tweezed and used home-made depilatories, yet it was scaled back, oddly enough, so that they preened the areas society wouldn’t see, and left the face relatively untouched (though I’m sure they tweezed their eyebrows a little). In 1915 American women were influenced by ‘a marketing campaign in Harper’s Bazaar magazine that painted underarm hair as unfeminine, unhygienic and completely unfashionable for the latest sleeveless women’s styles’. This led to women going back to the more hairless beauty regime their ancestors used. Which is funny, considering some women who go hairless today say they do so in an act of defiance of an oppressive ritual. Whereas, in fact, as you can see, such a practice has been done by un-oppressed women for literally thousands of years.
As I’ve already observed, male grooming goes back quite early, as far back as female hair removal. Although beards often symbolised manhood, health and wisdom, the Romans adopted the trend of Alexander the Great and other Greeks, by removing their beards in times of war. A clean-shaven man thus represented progress and civilisation, while a bearded man became the symbol of slavery, servitude and barbarism in the Roman Empire. From then to now, the trends are difficult to follow, but what I’ve found I’ve included above. To recap, it was considered manly to have a lot of hair, except on the face – where opinion changed every now and then.
To take this topic into modern times, the 1990s saw a rise in the metrosexual. That is, a man who grooms himself, removes most of his body hair, and uses lotions and other grooming practices. One article I went to for research stated that it is socially acceptable, which shocked me quite a bit. up to now, in this post, I’ve merely been writing what I’ve researched, but now I venture into opinion. The opinion being: what utter drivel. Most recently, I remember, was the one-time Aussie cricketer Shane Warn, who was seen looking preened, puffed and sparkled, and the press absolutely tore into him! He was ridiculed by every man I know (yes, we men do gossip about these things, too. We’re just more manly about it!), even the ones who take care of themselves. That may be because the term ‘metrosexual’ is synonymous with those who overdo it. to groom, but not overdo it, is acceptable, in most circles, but to overdo it, no matter your gender, I think is not so.
Speaking of overdoing things, that brings me to my next subject: foot binding. Foot binding is the act of breaking the feet of little girls repeatedly and binding them so that, as the girl grew, the feet didn’t, and stayed very small. This was started when the girl was between 2 and 5, and the feet would be washed, toenails trimmed (to prevent infection – though some also put shards of glass next to the toes, to encourage infection, and thus lose their toes), their bones broken and curled inwards and under, then wrapped up in wet cloth (which would tighten further). They’d then be required to walk about on their broken feet, because their weight would add to the crushing. For the rich, this was done daily. For the poorer women, only a few times a week. This was seen as sexually appealing, and lasted in China (depending on which source of origin you follow) for over a thousand years. Indeed, it was only until the last century that saw the end to it. This is one of the more extreme cases of sexual trends, as I’m sure you can appreciate.
Bet you thought I wasn’t going to go there, did you? Well, I’ve run out of space to go into more detail, though I encourage you to look up foot binding for yourself. If nothing else, it’ll count towards your new fact of the day (if you do such a thing). That’s it for this week. Happy Holidays!
This is JV – signing off.
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