When I told the rest of the Byrdie team in an editorial meeting that I'd never had a wax before, they were pretty shocked. I assume they were half wondering how I'd made it to 26 without one, but what they seemed to find crazier was the fact that I, a beauty editor, had never tried a beauty treatment so many women do on a fortnightly basis. (Or is it monthly? Weekly? See, I haven't got a clue.)
I wasn't really surprised at their disbelief. In fact, I'd waited this long to tell anyone at all—I knew people would find it weird. I assumed that if I told someone, they'd have more questions—ones they might ask out loud, or worse, ones they might ponder in their own heads. If anyone asked me for a waxing salon recommendation, I'd list the places I knew my friends rated, and I'd sigh a groan of solidarity when others would complain about having to book in an appointment before they went away. I learned how to dodge the bullet.
But having told the team—and their interest in this crazy truth bomb quickly waning—I soon realised that being so precious about this stupid little secret is actually ridiculous. Fundamentally, it contradicts everything I preach about body positivity. I could convince anyone to take pride in their stretch marks or show the world their cellulite, but I couldn't muster up the courage to admit I was a wax virgin.
Although I identify as an ardent feminist, I can't proclaim that my wax resistance is an act of gender-role defiance. Because while I firmly refuse any notion that suggests a person should remove body hair for the benefit of anyone other than themselves (and I'm incredibly happy that this movement is growing), my motives aren't really that political. In fact, I'm not sure I really have any motives at all.
I entered into the world of hair removal at the same time as my peers: I dry-shaved my legs on P.E. days (never a good idea) and plucked my eyebrows, but as everyone else started to graduate to at-home waxing strips (and subsequently, the salon equivalent), I never felt the urge to follow suit. I was a massive scaredy-cat, and I didn't particularly like the idea of ripping hairs from where they were designed to be. So I just never did. No leg wax. No bikini wax. Nothing.
As I got over my other unfounded fears (like piercings and smear tests), I never felt an ounce of desire to try a wax. It's no longer an aversion, but I can't really be bothered. I'm not trying to be preachy: You can leave your body hair exactly how it is, or pluck out every last hair from your body for all I care—you do you.
It's just that I find that other forms of hair removal (Friction Free Shaving, your razors are next to none) just as effective, albeit slightly higher maintenance, and they come without the inconvenience of having to book an appointment. I'm not saying I'll never have a wax (although if I do, I'll for sure write a story about it), but for now, I'm good.
So there—I've said it. I'm a beauty editor, and I've never had a wax before. And guess what? It really doesn't matter. You in the same boat? I'd love to hear your wax-free story over in our dedicated Facebook group, The British Beauty Line.