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Ace of Amethysts

Discussion of femininity

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A while back I made an AVEN thread where I said I disagreed with underarm shaving because the fact that society kind of wants females to do it because it`s seen as feminine thing to shave off hair people rarely see in the first place irked me. I`ve been wanting to make a thread expanding this topic into a discussion about feminine behaviours and expectations of femininity, so here it is.

Ranting is welcome.

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I used to absolutely hate female beauty standards, but now I just don't care anymore.

 

The other week we were talking about shaving and I showed a mutual friend my armpit hair and she was pretty bothered by it, which I took great amusement out of later.

 

I find that not adhering to almost any feminine beauty standards makes it easier to narrow down my pool of friends and not getting too close to people who are clearly sexist and/or homophobic.

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Hair has never bothered me, but the fact that hair bothers other people does bother me. I think I'm hairier than the average female person too, so for me to keep up with the insanity of being hairless, I'd have to have expensive laser treatments (considered it once, but didn't do), or shave obsessively and deal with the itch. Screw that. I mean, I prefer not having a forest on my legs, so I do shave that sometimes... but that's really for my own preference and not for others.

 

One thing I absolutely cannot stand though is make-up. First of all, it's disgusting... icky slimy stuff on your face all day? No thanks! I actually don't let people who wear make-up get too close to me in case some of it rubs off. I've had this aversion to the stuff for as long as I can remember. Secondly... it makes people ugly, IMO. They look like clowns. I don't understand how any of that is supposed to make people "beautiful"... does not compute.

 

Oh, back to hair. Eyebrows. Why is it considered feminine or pretty to have thin eyebrows? I think the contrast of having dark thick eyebrows looks nice, on all people regardless of gender. Borderline invisible eyebrows (especially if done on purpose) looks weird to me. Then again, fake eyebrows painted on with make up or whatever looks just as weird, so I dunno. Do people actually shave them off and then paint them back on again? :rofl: 

 

Also, I'm able to grow a small chin beard and mustache. I'm currently letting it grow out of curiosity and amusement - nobody has said anything yet except my one friend who keeps saying "I think it's time to shave"... to which I say "I think it's time to STFU". Thing is though, I don't know if it's actually really that rare for females to be able to grow some facial hair, or if they actually can, but they just keep removing it...

 

2 hours ago, aussiekirkland said:

I find that not adhering to almost any feminine beauty standards makes it easier to narrow down my pool of friends and not getting too close to people who are clearly sexist and/or homophobic.

I like this idea. I expect to lose some "friends" in the not too distant future. Hopefully I'll find some more good ones too.

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@SoulWolf Thank you. The fact that females have body hair bothers other people bothers the hell out of me too.

I`ve never paid much attention to other people`s eyebrows, although I do in fact have larger than average eyebrows. :)

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2 hours ago, SoulWolf said:

I think I'm hairier than the average female person too, so for me to keep up with the insanity of being hairless, I'd have to have expensive laser treatments (considered it once, but didn't do), or shave obsessively and deal with the itch. Screw that.

Same! But I always wear jeans and long sleeves so I don't have to mind it. 

 

However, if I want to wear a dress, I will shave my legs and arm pit for the only reason that I don't like it esthetically speaking. The humain hair (except for facial hair when it's dense enough) is just really not appealing to me, especially when you compare it to other hairy animals that are super soft and fluffy! (I swear I'm not a furry!)

 

Now, when people argue that it's a feminine thing to shave your hair... I tell them to f*ck off. It's none of your business what someone does or not with their body. Aslo, there are plenty of other ways to be feminine. Also, I always wonder if women of the antiquity were shaving... I mean, I know the egyptians did (and men were shaving a lot too), but what about THE REST OF THE WORLD?

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I shave my underarms but I don't shave my legs or anything. I don't like the idea that women must shave and that it's frowned upon if you don't. I still wear makeup and (like I said just before) shave my underarms but I do that for me because it makes me feel more comfortable. 

Femininity as a whole is not something I'm totally fussed with I don't hate it I'm more indifferent to it I guess. 

 

With the shaving thing I just think well, our bodies are growing these hairs just like pretty much every other person on the planet. The hairs are meant to be there so it shouldn't be seen as bad for a woman to not shave. If anything not shaving is more natural. If they want to shave that's fine! But if they don't well that should be fine too. 

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17 hours ago, Scout said:

I shave my underarms but I don't shave my legs or anything. I don't like the idea that women must shave and that it's frowned upon if you don't. I still wear makeup and (like I said just before) shave my underarms but I do that for me because it makes me feel more comfortable. 

Femininity as a whole is not something I'm totally fussed with I don't hate it I'm more indifferent to it I guess. 

 

With the shaving thing I just think well, our bodies are growing these hairs just like pretty much every other person on the planet. The hairs are meant to be there so it shouldn't be seen as bad for a woman to not shave. If anything not shaving is more natural. If they want to shave that's fine! But if they don't well that should be fine too. 

My position on feminine stuff is pretty much this without the underarm shaving.

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Oh, the never ending shaving debate. Treating shaving like an effort to cover up a secret is really harmful, especially for children. Pre teen kids should not be bullied into messing with razors and hot wax. 

 

Hair removal can be empowering though, especially for transfeminine people. If its something that makes you feel great then go for it. 

 

 I did this experiment, if I started to pluck my eyebrows in the ladies room, nobody gives a second look. If I tidy up my upper lip, some people get so offended.

There is definitely a stigma, some types of body hair are just more socially acceptable. Also its kind of funny how some feminists stop at leg and armpit hair.

 

Being some mix of femme and butch, kind of like a peacock, I do a lot of femme things because I enjoy them, but when I notice it turning into a restrictive thing, i stop.

With shaving its weird.I would not necessarily consider it to be a feminine thing, people shave, end of the story. 

 

Personally I kind of enjoy it in an aestethic way, because it makes me feel more dapper, and its one of my self care things I do as a ritual of self reflection and its a way to be okay with my body. Not really in a way to try to control it, but more like being familiar with how it is.

 I guess its because I'm quite pale, but my hair is dark, so its really obvious when I do some grooming. Also, I kind of figured out in my teens that no armpit hair means having less sweat, at least on me.

But I'm not really bothered by the existence of it or feel too much pressure to maintain a perfect clean shave anymore.

 

TL;DR

Statistically most AFAB people naturally do look like Frida Khalo, especially if they are from an ethnic group near the equator. They do have facial hair and nipple hair and unibrows, hairy bellies, hobbit feet and thigh hair and all that jazz. Just shave from the age of 12 on. That's pretty depressing if you think about it.

 

 

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I'm closeted NB, so vast vast majority of people think I'm a woman irl.

 

Repeating what others have already said, but anyway... I really don't care what women do with their bodies. It really bothers me when they think it's gross for women not to do the same as them. Why is hair seen as inherently bad on women when it's FINE on men? It's literally the same thing, except it's generally thicker and more dense on men.

 

Also when people get grossed out by muscles on women. I don't understand that. People get grossed out whenever a woman is not stereotypically feminine. And that pisses me off. I didn't even realise this was going on for many years of my life. Up until a few years ago, I did as well. Because we're all conditioned to. We all grow up, and are presented with the 'perfect feminine woman'. And told it's disgusting if we don't shave. Around entering high school, I didn't want to shave. I never wanted to. Made it worse that I have eczema and couldn't if I wanted to anyway. But that meant I had to hide it. I could never show my legs because I would be completely shunned for not shaving. I don't give a shit now, but I did when I was 10-12 years old... And when I realised the pure brainwashing most of us go through (at least in Australian culture), I was disgusted.

 

And then of course I figure out a few years later that I've also been brainwashed into thinking that I can't be happy without a romantic relationship, and that that was bullshit as well. Haha!

 

But yeah, I don't care what others do. Slap on a cake face. Be bald all over. But don't force it onto me. Don't say that I'm disgusting and shouldn't show parts of myself because it's not good enough for you. Especially if it's just because you perceive me as a woman. Especially if it would be a different story if you thought I was a man.

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4 hours ago, Cassiopeia said:

Statistically most AFAB people naturally do look like Frida Khalo, especially if they are from an ethnic group near the equator. They do have facial hair and nipple hair and unibrows, hairy bellies, hobbit feet and thigh hair and all that jazz. Just shave from the age of 12 on. That's pretty depressing if you think about it.

Cool, thanks for posting that. First thing I noticed when I looked up pics of Frida is that she looks like she could be related to me. :P 

Yay role models.

 

3 hours ago, Dodgypotato said:

People get grossed out whenever a woman is not stereotypically feminine. And that pisses me off. I didn't even realise this was going on for many years of my life.

I've just recently realized that I think I understand why I've had so much trouble with people staring at me oddly. I have a pretty androgynous face, and I prefer having short hair, and I like my thick eyebrows (which apparently look like a unibrow to some people). In summer it's not too hard to tell that I have boobs and such (though they are quite small), but in winter when I have a thick jacket on, people stare more. It's like they're trying to figure out what the hell I am (why do they even want to know that badly? Though I've been guilty of this as well!). I've always hated getting that kind of attention from people. I get it more now with the facial hair, so I guess I'm gonna have to desensitize myself to it. The guy in the pizza place looked incredibly awkward while I was ordering the other day, it was almost hilarious, but it made me nervous as hell too. And the till lady was almost completely ignoring me while ringing up my items, lol.

 

Why didn't I realize this sooner though? It now seems like it should have been more obvious... :rofl:

Probably because I spend a lot of time in my own little world, ignoring reality... for obvious reasons, I suppose. I guess I couldn't handle the truth until recently.

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12 hours ago, SoulWolf said:

Why didn't I realize this sooner though? It now seems like it should have been more obvious... :rofl:

Probably because I spend a lot of time in my own little world, ignoring reality... for obvious reasons, I suppose. I guess I couldn't handle the truth until recently.

I just never used to pay attention to like... Anyone else at all. Lol! I mean, for example, I used to hear the words 'heterosexual' and 'homosexual' thrown around increasing more and more around ages 13 and 14. But I honestly learnt what all those sorts of terms meant only at almost 18 years of age. And then came the whole.. Am I bi? pan? etc. xD

1 hour ago, Ace of Amethysts said:

@Dodgypotato I hate to go off topic, but it seems to me that Australia is kind of obsessed with romance.

Yes. Extremely. We have soooo many soapy romance drama shows at the moment, the majority scripted. And a lot of people are just sucking them up like they're the best thing ever. Hah! Strange. But I think the majority of the rest of the world is very romance obsessed as well. Especially countries like India. I don't think it's as bad here. I know in some cultures, if you don't marry, you're perceived as a failure. Truly and utterly, way more so than here. Some places your parents are just constantly pushing at you to to get married regardless of your happiness. They'd rather you to suppress who you are in order to find a partner. I think that's horrible. With women in particular - I've witnessed this. If a woman is not particularly feminine, their parents will press them to suppress their masculinity (or neutrality) in order to 'attract men'. That's so dumb. You would then have to suppress your true self for the rest of your life. That would be horrible.

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20 hours ago, Cassiopeia said:

Oh, the never ending shaving debate. Treating shaving like an effort to cover up a secret is really harmful, especially for children. Pre teen kids should not be bullied into messing with razors and hot wax. 

As someone who was bullied into shaving at only 11 I second this.

 

I spent years hating my body for doing what it's supposed to do and only in recent years have I managed to unlearn it.

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4 minutes ago, Ace of Amethysts said:

@aussiekirkland You serious? That sucks. :(

 

The same thing happened when I was 9, and the girls in the locker room were nagging me about when I was getting a bra (same shit, different school). Stuff like that was super isolating because I was an early bloomer.

 

In my experience puberty is used as an excuse to sexualise and feminise young girls which I personally think is really gross. It certainly felt wrong to me, all the pressure to "be a woman" and "be desirable to guys".

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5 hours ago, aussiekirkland said:

 

The same thing happened when I was 9, and the girls in the locker room were nagging me about when I was getting a bra (same shit, different school). Stuff like that was super isolating because I was an early bloomer.

 

In my experience puberty is used as an excuse to sexualise and feminise young girls which I personally think is really gross. It certainly felt wrong to me, all the pressure to "be a woman" and "be desirable to guys".

Yeah I was asked out in public by one of my *****friends***** if I wear/was wearing a bra. Surrounded by the whole class. This was year 7 I think. So around 11 years old. I never found a need to. I still wouldn't if I truly had a choice in the matter. I got pressured into it eventually because I got paranoid that girls would keep trying their best to humiliate me. I also was pressured into shaving my legs, which really sucked for me because as I mentioned, I had really bad eczema on my legs at the time. Really really not good for it...

 

For me, it was just a horrible time of absolutely no one telling me that anything was going to happen. Yeah, I had no idea what puberty was or periods or anything. So there I thought that something was completely wrong with me. Because I mean, I didn't see anything good to any of the changes - it was like a disease out of no where. And on top of that there's people from every direction pressuring me into hiding and suppressing all of these changes. What was I supposed to think? Obviously I thought something was wrong with me.

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I hate the idea of makeup (I have worn it a handful of times in my life, never 100% willingly, but NO MORE) and overly feminine clothing - what's really objectively wrong with girls/women wearing comfy Tshirts and jeans all the time? I admit I love the feminine goth type aesthetic, but it's just not practical for everyday wear and I hate people making comments about my clothes, unless they're trying to make conversation and not being a dick in the process.

Side note - when you live in trousers and wear a skirt once in a blue moon, and people who witness it say "now we can see your legs". Like, what? You can't see my legs when they're neatly partitioned by snug fitting fabric, but you can see them under this thing that reaches the floor and barely touches them at the sides? :facepalm:

Also, a certain makeup ad I kept seeing over Christmas annoyed me a bit - "don't be embarrassed if you don't fit in the crowd" (just use our makeup to fit into said crowd instead of embracing a degree of non-conformity). 

 

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1 hour ago, Untamed Heart said:

Side note - when you live in trousers and wear a skirt once in a blue moon, and people who witness it say "now we can see your legs". Like, what? You can't see my legs when they're neatly partitioned by snug fitting fabric, but you can see them under this thing that reaches the floor and barely touches them at the sides? :facepalm:

I got this from my English teacher when she was one of the chaperones at prom. Why the heck do people think it's ever going to be anything other than a.) pointless, and b.) extremely awkward, to say something like this to someone? (I mean, the only reason I even wore a dress to prom in the first place was out of solidarity with my QPP, who would've been forced to wear a dress if he'd gone because his family was being really awful about his gender. Otherwise, I would have just straight-up worn a suit, or whatever approximation thereof I could've thrown together out of the vests and dress pants I had because I wasn't out yet and didn't have any money.)

 

Speaking of which, what is it with the whole obnoxiously gendered prom culture thing? Is that a thing outside the US? Because here, at least, the amount of expectations of conventional femininity that are attached to the whole affair is more than a little horrifying. Just flip through a prom dress catalog or talk to a "normal" high school senior, I swear it's like the whole thing is some sort of cult initiation ceremony or something.

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I shave my armpits because to me it feels nice, and less sweaty. I also shave my legs. I used to do it to please other people, but now I just do it because I like the way it looks and feels. I only do it if I feel like it. It doesn't matter to me if other people do or not--anyone is allowed to do whatever they want with their body!

 

Standards of femininity and of feminine beauty are probably... one of the biggest reasons I don't feel completely comfortable in being a cis girl. I just want to dress, act, talk, do whatever however I want regardless of my gender. I hate how femininity is so closely tied to the (straight cis) male gaze and how I'm expected to be a certain way in order to be a "normal girl."

 

I hate swimsuits and the way they make me feel, and I hate makeup, and I hate feeling like I have to put on a costume for other people. When I go to the mall with my friends, sometimes they want to look at clothes, which is fine because I like clothes well enough, but I don't feel comfortable shopping with people because I cannot bring myself to fit the stereotypical feminine narrative. And I just get so sick of being judged for it! "Just wear the swimsuit, you'll look great, don't be self-conscious!" It's not that I'm self-conscious, I mean that's part of it, but I just hate the way it feels and feminine gender roles just make me want to scream.

 

And I hate when people try to force stereotypical feminine roles of softness, delicacy, and motherhood onto you as if I'm supposed to be soft and nurturing by default. No, get that away from me.

 

I don't have that many feminine features. I'm an extremely small-chested individual, I'm lanky and awkward looking, and I chopped all my hair off a year and a half ago. I've embraced it as part of my increasingly more androgynous aesthetic. And I can't stand when people, even friends, draw attention to it like I'm some kind of enigma instead of a regular old human being!

 

4 hours ago, Dodecahedron314 said:

Speaking of which, what is it with the whole obnoxiously gendered prom culture thing? Is that a thing outside the US? Because here, at least, the amount of expectations of conventional femininity that are attached to the whole affair is more than a little horrifying. Just flip through a prom dress catalog or talk to a "normal" high school senior, I swear it's like the whole thing is some sort of cult initiation ceremony or something.

 

wooooOOOOOOOOOO don't get me started on prom! I'm fine wearing more casual dresses, but prom dresses for some reason make me want to rip off my skin and throw it into a fire. Prom culture is the bane of my existence. Junior prom wasn't even that fun and I wanted to rip my skin off for half of the night. I want desperately to wear a suit this year but Traditional Gender Roles(TM) dictate that I can't do that unless I want to have a stressful and long-winded argument with my parents. /shrug

 

That turned into a rant. Enjoy that mess.

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4 hours ago, Dodecahedron314 said:

Speaking of which, what is it with the whole obnoxiously gendered prom culture thing? Is that a thing outside the US?

Prom/ball culture is a huuuuge thing in Australia. It's so gross and gendered! Sure a girl could wear a suit, if they wanted to be ridiculed. Not to mention of my friends was a lesbian and wasn't allowed to take a girl, so she took a gay guy so they could share the pain of homophobic private schools together. I couldn't even believe that rule existed, it was absolutely disgusting.

 

School balls are basically the final ritual for conforming to cis/heteronormative culture and hardly anyone seemed to be bothered by it???

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1 hour ago, aussiekirkland said:

Not to mention of my friends was a lesbian and wasn't allowed to take a girl, so she took a gay guy so they could share the pain of homophobic private schools together. I couldn't even believe that rule existed, it was absolutely disgusting.

 

They actually did that? Ugh...

 

I've pretty much ignored everything people do, especially stuff like prom. Also, I've spent most of high school so far in independent study and online school. So, I haven't really spent much time with 'normal' high school stuff.

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