Me and My Fur: All About Body Hair

I have all my natural body hair. The last time I shaved any part of my body was over three years ago.

A green razor on a brown surface. For a post about body hair

The pressure to be hairless begins early.

I first shaved my legs at the age of 11, because a girl at a sleepover told me that no boy would want me if I had hairy legs. I didn’t even like boys at the time! But somehow, even to an 11 year old who had privately decided she was either gay or asexual (not that I had the actual language for either concept then,) the notion of boys thinking I was ugly was impossible to shrug off. Less than a year later, my mum gave me an electric shaver and told me to keep my armpits free from hair at all times. She wasn’t trying to body-shame me – she is, after all, surrounded by the exact same toxic culture that I am. I think she just didn’t want me to get bullied any more than I already did.

I held out on shaving my pubic hair until I was 19. My boyfriend had been increasing the pressure for several years. After we went to an event where he saw naked women apart from me in the flesh for the first time, it became apparent it wasn’t an option to keep my hair any more. So I dutifully got rid of it and for the next five years, I pretty much kept my entire body smooth and hair-free. Whether I actually liked it that way didn’t really enter into the picture. It was just part of the package of having been assigned female, like periods and casual sexism.

Realising I had a choice

It was Mr CK who woke me up to the idea that I actually had a choice about my body hair. He has made it clear from the beginning of our relationship that he finds body hair beautiful and erotic (spot the boy who came of age in the era of 7os porn!) But he also emphasised that I had to do what felt right for ME, and that he had no more say over my personal grooming than the people who had pushed me into shaving in the first place.

So I tried going au naturel for a while. Just as an experiment, to see if I liked it. That was three years ago and I have not picked up a razor since. I credit my beloved for reminding me I did have a choice, but the choice I actually made was all mine.

Learning to love my hair

I love keeping my body hair for a number of reasons. The time and money it saves me is not insignificant. My skin is much happier since being free of razors and shaving balms and post-shave rash and ingrowing hairs. And I just fucking love how it looks. When I look at my naked body in the mirror, I love the look of my little patch of pubic hair over my cunt. When I wear my favourite sexy knickers, I like seeing the little wisps poking out. I love lifting my arms and seeing the shadow of my reddish-brown underarm hair. I love how soft and fuzzy my legs are.

If I’m honest, I also enjoy the implicit things it tells people about me. For better or worse, body hair on women is heavily coded “feminist” – because making a choice about how to groom our bodies cannot just be a choice, it has to be a political statement. Thwarting societal beauty norms feels like a simple way to wear my politics on my body.

I have to acknowledge I have a level of privilege here in that my leg hair, at least, is very fine and blonde (my pubic and underarm hair is much coarser, darker and more obvious). Would I feel different if my leg hair was thicker and darker? If I grew hair on other parts of my body? I don’t know. I suspect I might struggle if it was growing on my face, for example, but I cannot say with any certainty as this is not my experience.

The impact on my sex life

Having body hair has definitely impacted my sex life. Mr CK and I swing together, and a large number of swingers will not have anything to do with people who do not shave every inch of their bodies. Pubic hair, in particular, gets us rejected a lot. (Insert hi-fucking-larious joke about flossing during oral sex here).

It’s been less of an issue in my one-on-one sex life, surprisingly. I don’t actually play with new people by myself that often, to be honest, and when I do the barrier to entry is pretty fucking high. I remember when The Artist and I had first established that we wanted to date, asking them nervously how they felt about women with body hair. The giant smiley face emoji they replied with… well, that was the moment I let out a huge breath I hadn’t realised I had been holding. Until I asked, there was a sense of I really like this person… and I think they really like me too… but are they going to be disgusted by my body when I take my clothes off?

For this reason, I tend to disclose it to potential lovers before the clothes come off. I feel more relaxed if I know they’re cool with it rather than waiting for the reaction. I hate that I have to do this. I’d much rather it not be a big deal. I wish I didn’t have to feel like it was something I needed to disclose. But mentioning it to sex partners before we get to the sex feels preferable to how devastated I’d be if a lover said something disparaging about my body when we were already in a sexual situation.

And it’s a surprisingly good screening device, actually. Misogynists tend to self-select out of my dating pool pretty fast when they realise I’m hairy.  To be honest, pissing off sexist men is one of life’s simple pleasures for me. Having hair is an easy way to do that.

The thing I’ve actually found most helpful is sleeping with lovers who actively like body hair. I currently have four lovers who I know are extremely into it. The way they look at me when I take my clothes off,the way they run their fingers through my fur or bury their faces in it, reminds me that I can be beautiful and desirable like this. They’re not settling or putting up with it. They actually like it, and me!

Fear of judgement… and sometimes actual judgement

Sure, I’ve been judged for being hairy. I’ve had gaggles of girl whisper and point and take pictures on the Tube because I had the nerve to get my legs out in public in 30 degree heat. I’ve had disgusted, sidelong glances thrown at me in the gym locker room. When I was regularly nude modelling and dared to go on camera with body hair on display, my picture comments went from “beautiful!” to “nice body but please shave that fur”. (No longer wanting to put myself through things like this is one of the many reasons I quit modelling not long after I stopped shaving).

I’ve had couples cancel dates with me and Mr CK at the eleventh hour because they had assumed that of course I was going to shave, and then realised I actually wasn’t. I’ve had guys comment on my pictures on Fetlife, saying “if you were mine you’d shave!” (Good job I’m never going to be yours then, isn’t it, dickbag?) The implication is there that Mr CK is somehow less of a Dom for allowing his sub to go unshaven.

The fear of judgement used to go with me everywhere. Sometimes it still does. When we start messaging a new person or a new couple on the swinger dating sites we use, I worry they’re going to pull out the “ew, pubes are gross” schtick. When we go to new clubs and I run around naked or in lingerie, I’m bracing myself for the “you’d be so pretty if you’d shave!”

Every summer, I weigh up the choice between being unbearably overheated in my oven of an office, or the daily fear of being pulled into a manager’s office and told that my natural leg hair is unprofessional. I sit there quietly while a female colleague bemoans being a woman and having to shave your legs every day in summer. I do not shout “YOU HAVE A CHOICE YOU KNOW!” even though I want to. It’s a constant fucking balancing act between asserting my right to exist in the world with my natural body, and just being tired of it all.

I don’t think I’m good at responding to the judgement yet, when it happens. I usually just want to cry or shrivel up in shame. I’m trying to be better about not letting it get to me, but as someone who grew up bullied, brushing it off is really hard.

Amazingly, no-one has ever actually shamed me – to my face, anyway – in a sex club or kink event. But I’m waiting for it. I’m always waiting for it. Because at most events, I’m the only one – and I see the looks I sometimes get. I see the “ooh, hot girl, nice boobs… oh, never mind” eye-swoop over my body.

I know what you’re probably thinking. “If the judgement bothers you, just shave!” But if you’re thinking that you’ve missed the whole point of what I’m trying to say. The problem doesn’t lie with me. I’m not doing something hugely out there and subversive and wild just by having my body on display in its natural state. I should not have to change it. Nor should I have to constantly defend my choice not to change it.

I like my body like this. The world does not get a say.

Femme identity and body hair

My relationship to femininity has been fraught and complex over the years, but I now sit fairly happily with my femme identity. It’s been a healing way for me to play with my aesthetic and my presentation. To find ways that reflect who I am as both a woman and a queer person. However, for a while I wrestled with the question: can I be femme if I don’t remove my body hair?

Ultimately, I approached this from the same angle as the question about whether you can be femme without wearing, say, lipstick or high heels. There are many trappings that are culturally coded feminine, and femme is about reclaiming these things (which society has often deemed frivolous) and playing with them, making them our own. For me, femme is a way to pick and choose the pieces of feminine presentation I want to embody. A way to escape the rigid codes society enforces about “what a woman should do/be”. To say “in order to be femme you must do X, Y and Z” is just trading one kind of oppressively strict standard for another. Femme is about fun and happiness within your own skin, not following the rules.

For a while, I jokingly referred to myself as “#lazyfemme” for not shaving and for sometimes going out without makeup on. I stopped this, though, because I realised it’s actually playing into the patriarchy to continue coding myself (and by implication other women) who choose not to do these things as “lazy”. As I once furiously ranted online “I have worked sixty fucking hours this week, but sure, I’m LAZY because I’m not wearing lipstick.”

So yes. I am a happy #sparklefemme who chooses the aspects of feminine presentation that work for her, and has decided that shaving is not her thing.

So do I think women who shave are just pawns of the patriarchy?

No! I believe in the absolute right to bodily autonomy for everybody. That includes the choice to shave/wax/tattoo/pierce/adorn/decorate your body in whatever ways you like, or not.

What I wish is that it was a more free choice. I wish there wasn’t such immense societal pressure on women and AFAB people to present themselves in a certain way. That razor companies weren’t constantly trying to sell us the solution to a problem they’ve convinced us we have. That wider representations of beauty were common in our media.  I wish, to be honest, that shaving or not shaving wasn’t such a politically loaded and socially fraught choice.

And I wish we were not teaching little girls at 11 that the most important thing in the world is whether or not boys find their bodies aesthetically acceptable.

Oof – that was a long one with a lot of emotional energy behind it! If you enjoyed it, please consider buying me a virtual coffee!

[Toy Review] Temptasia Bling Bling Silicone Butt Plug with Clear Crystal

I have a complicated relationship with anal sex. For years, it was the hardest of the hard limits – partly thanks to undue pressure put on me to engage in it when I had barely begin exploring my own sexuality. However, I gradually opened up to exploring it with my now-Primary-partner Mr CK. Now I love it. I’m not able to do it often, but when we do I always really enjoy it.

My collection of anal toys is steadily growing (largely thanks to my sweetheart buying them for me as presents when we started exploring anal play together). But it’s much smaller than my collections of dildos and vibrators. So I was delighted when Peepshow Toys offered me the Temptasia Bling Bling silicone butt plug with a crystal to try out.

The Nitty-Gritty

The Temptasia Bling Bling butt plug on a bathroom sink.The Temptasia Bling Bling plug is manufactured by Blush Novelties, who produce a huge range of toys (they’re behind the Gaia, Real Nude and Aria toy lines, among many others).

The plug is made from silky-smooth silicone, which feels wonderful in the hand and the butt as well as being completely body-safe. The base is heart-shaped and embedded with a clear, sparkly faux-gemstone (the gem is made of plastic).

This plug is available in 3 sizes, so whatever your ass is up for, there’s a sparkly plug for you. I chose the medium, which is 2.8″ in insertable length and 1.4″ diameter at widest point. The small is 2.6″ x 1″, and the large is 3.2″ x 1.75″. None of them are huge. If you crave really big things up your butt, they might not be for you.

Each of the plugs has a tapered tip for easy insertion and a slim neck for comfort, as well as a large enough base to make them anal-safe. (You wouldn’t believe the amount of toys I see marketed as “for anal play” that don’t have a decent base/handle. The golden rule is, if there’s nothing to stop it disappearing all the way inside, don’t put it in your butt).

The Temptasia Bling Bling plug retails for $11 (S), $13 (M) or $15 (L) at Peepshow (this equates to about £8/£9.50/£11). Honestly, they could cost twice as much and I’d still say they were good value. Peepshow’s selection is living proof that good quality, body-safe toys do not need to cost an arm and a leg. I wish all the companies selling unsafe products “because people want cheap things” would catch up.

In Use

We used this plug after quite a long break from any kind of anal play, so I was a bit nervous. (“Shit, should have asked for the small!”) I said on taking it out of the packaging. But with some deep breathing and a generous helping of my favourite anal lube, it slipped inside comfortably.

Once it was in, I found the size perfect. It was large enough that I could feel it every time I moved, but small enough so as not to cause any unnecessary stretching or pain.

I’m happy to say that this is one of the most comfortable plugs I’ve ever worn. The silicone is lovely and soft and there are no seams, ridges or imperfections to cause discomfort. The neck is long enough that it sat comfortably, and the base didn’t chafe or rub against my butt cheeks. I wore it for about an hour while we did other things (see this review for details of that session!) and I could happily have worn it for much longer.

It was just so comfortable, you guys.

I also love how pretty these plugs look in use. The heart shaped gem is super cute and just appeals massively to my #Sparklefemme aesthetic. I’m sure they will be a hit with femmes, babygirls and lovers of shiny things everywhere!

Some Notes on Care & Cleaning

Normally, I recommend that you clean silicone toys without motors – especially anal toys – by boiling them in a pan of water for a few minutes. Unfortunately, you cannot do that with toys like this. The boiling water will ruin the glue that holds the gem in place and cause it to pop out.

The best thing to do is this: Give it a rinse to get any obvious butt-gunk and lube off. Then soak it in a 10% bleach solution (9 parts water to one part bleach) for a few minutes. After that, give it a really thorough wash in warm water and gentle soap, dry thoroughly, and store.

The joining line where the gem is glued into the base could definitely be a home for bacteria to hide. For that reason I recommend fully sterilising this plug between uses even if you’re not sharing it with a non fluid-bonded partner, and taking extra care around that area.

So do I recommend it?

Yes. I particularly recommend this plug for those new to anal play. It’s a safe, quality product at such an affordable price. You could even buy all three and use them as a beginner training kit, if you’re interested in conditioning your ass to take bigger insertables. A great product at an absolute steal of a price.

Thanks to Peepshow Toys for sending me this product in exchange for an honest review. All views are, as ever, my own. If you buy this product or anything from Peepshow Toys, please purchase through the affiliate links contained within this post. And don’t forget you can get 10% off by using code “coffee” at checkout! This sends a small commission my way. This helps me to keep bringing adult product reviews to you all. Photos are by me and not to be used without permission.

[Toy Review] Vain Toys Laid Back Dildo

Vain Toys is a new European company – specifically, they’re based in Denmark – whose goal is to produce “unique, fun and funky” sex toys, all of which are also body-safe. I love small companies who hand-make their products and really care about their consumers, so I was delighted when owner Alex reached out and asked to commission a review of the toy of my choice from their collection.

My choice of toy…

Vain only carry 10 toy models currently, 7 dildos and three butt plugs, but they all look so good it was hard to decide. After much deliberation, I chose the Laid Back dildo. Like all Vain toys, it comes in a choice of any one of twenty (20!) colours, and you can also add gold or silver glitter and choose between a suction cup or flat base. I went for deep purple with silver glitter (because of course I did, have you met me!?) and a suction-cup base.

The Vain Laid Back dildo, in purple, sitting on an open notebook with two little purple silicone hearts.It’s absolutely beautiful, as you can see from the picture. The purple is a really vibrant, rich colour which goes perfectly with the silver glitter, and the hand-poured silicone gives a gorgeous swirly effect. I cannot even tell you how happy this toy makes my little #SparkleFemme heart.

My toy arrived within 8 days (impressive, considering that they’re all custom-made to order) and discreetly packaged in a plain box. Inside, I was really impressed with the presentation. The toy came in its own draw-string organza bag – perfect for storage! – and with it were two little silicone hearts (presumably made with the leftovers from the mold) and a little bag of sweeties. Really nice, thoughtful presentation. I have already asked my partner The Artist if they can make one of the little hearts into a necklace for me.

Stits, stats ‘n’ safety stuff

The Laid Back dildo is a sizeable beast. The insertable length is 6.5″ and the diameter at the widest point is about 1.8″, or a 5.5″ circumference. The base is about 3.5″ wide, which makes the toy completely safe for anal play, and the suction cup enables it to stick firmly to any solid surface. It’s made of lovely premium silicone, which is non-toxic and non-porous, and the colours come from “body-safe cosmetic mica made from natural minerals.” In other words, no nasties that can harm your body!

Being pure silicone and without motors or anything, the easiest and most thorough way to clean this toy is to boil-sterilise it. Just pop it in a pan of boiling water on the stove for ~10 minutes, then rinse off and leave to dry. If you do this, it’s completely safe to share this toy with a partner even if you’re not fluid-bonded. If you want to share without sterilising between partners, the shape of this toy is very condom-compatible. Given the size, I recommend using a larger condom to ensure against breakage.

So how did I get on with it in use?

I love the feeling of Vain’s silicone. It’s really soft and squishy and bendable. I found these qualities ideal in use, because the Laid Back is definitely at the large end of the type of dildos I like to use. With a generous slathering of my favourite water-based lube and taking it nice and slowly, I managed to get the whole toy inside me comfortably. If you like very rigid toys, these products might not be for you. But personally, I found the silicone to be exactly the right blend of firmness and flexibility. Matte texture silicone can be a little “grabby” against skin, so lube is highly recommended. (Then again, with me lube is always highly recommended).

The large base made the toy easy to hold and manipulate when I was using it by hand, and I found the suction cup sturdy and reliable for hands-free use.  The base is a little too wide and thick to use comfortably with my harness, so if you’re wanting to use a Vain toy for strap-on play I recommend getting the regular flared base.

The curve is absolutely gorgeous and is mainly what drew me to this toy in the first place. I orgasm really easily from G-spot stimulation, and so I gravitate towards toys that curve in just the right way to hit the sweet spot. In this regard, the Laid Back dildo definitely didn’t disappoint. The shape is what I would describe as semi-realistic – the shaft and head shape somewhat resembles a bio-cock, but the curve of the head is more pronounced than your average factory-installed bits – though, of course, bodies vary tremendously!

The Laid Back dildo retails for €62 (about £55) which is a really reasonable price for a hand-made toy of this calibre. The rest of the range varies from €48 to €70.

Verdict: ★★★★★

Recommended for: folks who like G-spot stimulation, anyone who likes curved toys, fans of semi-realistic designs, people who want their toys bright coloured and glittery, and length/girth combination lovers.

Thanks to Alex and Vain Toys for supplying me with this product and sponsoring a review. All opinions are, and will always be, my own. Please consider buying from small companies like Vain Toys – it’s so important to support independent, ethical companies who prioritise customer happiness and body-safety. Photo is by me. Do not steal my pictures.

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