Epilators and Beauty Standards or Something

It’s hard to identify an angle here, so we’ll just start and see where it goes.

I find myself balancing an interest in odd devices I didn’t know existed with an unfortunate attachment to traditional beauty standards. Now, the upside is that those standards are aimed at myself rather than others. I actually didn’t pay attention to these details on others until it became a relevant part of my life. Even then, it was more of an exercise in gauging what was “normal” for others so that I didn’t accidentally out myself. Part of the trans experience for me is learning how to manage the intersection of physical appearance and internal experience. These two are often at odds. In this specific case I’m thinking about body hair.

Now, I’m not a particularly hairy human. Whether we blame that on genetics, luck, or a borderline low testosterone level is hard to say. Probably a combination of the bunch. I do however have extremely dark body hair on an extremely light skin tone. A real upside if you’re getting laser hair removal, which I am on my facial hair. A real downside considering I absolutely despise seeing detectable amounts of body hair. To me, on my body, it looks…. wrong.

The good news is that it’s relatively easy to deal with. It’s normal and expected for some reason that women attempt to minimize such things. I would think everyone is familiar with the basics of such a thing. Shaving works, but doesn’t last long. Waxing is more effective, but requires more effort and discomfort. Nair, Veet, and other creams technically exist too. There’s always laser removal, I guess, but I have firsthand knowledge of just how expensive that actually is.

This little contraption is very special torture device that I’ve never heard about until recently. It’s a sort of electric razor meets high speed tweezers sort of thing. The drum spins and its little teeth/slots grab ahold of hair and yank it out. I suspect the reason I’d never heard of it is because that’s about as painful as it sounds. It actually works quite well, but is extremely uncomfortable. Especially for someone like me who hasn’t ever done anything particularly epilatory? Is that a word? Spellcheck says no, but I’m keeping it.

It has really helped drive home, for me, just how far we’re willing to go in order to live up to beauty standards, be it those of society at large or our own self inflicted ones. Yet here we are, with not only this crazy contraption existing in a variety of different forms, but people including myself actually using it. My condolences to anyone that’s actually used one of these things.

I do find it cool that somebody figured out how to actually make this idea work though. Of course, I feel the same way about nearly everything, from electric motors to the internal combustion engine. Maybe I just have a standing appreciation for a well engineered product.

If anyone is curious, this is what a quick halfhearted test looked like on my arm. I missed some bits, but I wasn’t trying very hard. I simply wanted to get an idea of what to expect and didn’t have a lot of time to work with. The very red and irritated portion on the right is the area I went over. That picture was around 8 hours later, but coming up on 12 hours the redness and irritation is starting to subside.

My wife got a decent bit of amusement out of my reaction, though was fortunately not home at the time. I’m sure I made some rather amusing faces during the process. I did however need to actually charge the thing, so I’ll get to more fully torture myself in the future. It’s allegedly supposed to be a lot less intense after you’ve done it a time or two.

Y’all take care, though. Don’t use a handheld device to rapidly rip out all your hair. I mean, unless you want to I guess.

Hey, it’s Blaugust time! The goal is to simply promote and stimulate the blogging community by encouraging people of all skill levels and backgrounds to post. The official post can be found here and it’s never too late to start.

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