How much do you know about hair? As the weather heats up and we start to sweat, many women begin to consider hair removal as a way to feel fresher. But is hair really necessary for us?
Our bodies are born with something called "hair," with around 5 million individual strands found throughout our bodies. While some people go to great lengths to eliminate this hair, others try to regrow it. So, what exactly is the function of the hair that grows from the top of our head all the way down to our toes?
Why do we need hair?
First of all, hair helps minimize friction on our skin and protects our bodies from shocks. The same type of hair, known as terminal hair, grows on our faces, armpits, and genitals. While many people choose to remove this hair, it actually plays an important role in protecting our skin from chafing during exercise or movement. Similarly, pubic hair helps protect our genitals from the friction caused by external stimuli like sexual intercourse. This is why hair often regrows after it's been removed, even with different depilation methods.
Hair is a natural shield for our body
Hair also acts as a natural shield to maintain the hygiene of our bodies. Pubic hair, in particular, functions like nose hair to block out sweat, dust, bacteria, and other germs from intruding the vagina through the vulva. This barrier also helps protect us from sexually transmitted diseases like chlamydia, HPV, and herpes. Depilation can actually irritate the skin and leave small scars that may trigger other infections like folliculitis.
Hair regulates our body temperature
Another important function of body hair is to regulate our body temperature. Our hair stores heat and makes our bodies warm, which is why our hair often bristles when we're cold. Hair can also cool our bodies by emitting heat.
Hair induces sexual tension
Hair can even induce sexual tension, as the hair follicle has very small extremity nerves that, when stimulated, can produce feelings of pleasure. So, depilating our body hair may mean missing out on a potentially new sensation.
Despite all these functions, many women still choose to remove their body hair. Why?
First of all, hair can lead to excessive sweating, which can be uncomfortable and embarrassing, especially during the hot summer months. Hair tends to hold onto moisture, and sweat can get trapped in areas where skin touches, leading to damp and uncomfortable clothes. Depilation can actually help reduce this problem, as products with sweat-restraint ingredients can be easily absorbed into the hair follicle holes.
Reduces body odor
Hair can also contribute to body odor. Since hair holds onto moisture like sweat, it can create a moist environment where bacteria that produces bad smells can thrive. Removing hair can help reduce this odor.
Ease and comfort
Additionally, removing hair can help maintain cleanliness and avoid discomfort in certain areas of the body. For example, pubic hair can sometimes get caught in clothing or cause pain when it's suppressed by underwear. Removing hair can help eliminate these problems and reduce the smell caused by vaginal secretions. During menstruation, hair can also get stuck to the adhesive part of winged pads or mix with clotted blood.
Finally, removing hair can even increase satisfaction during sexual intercourse. When there is less hair, there is more direct skin-to-skin contact, which can lead to elevated sexual satisfaction. In fact, a survey conducted by UCSF found that many people choose to depilate in order to satisfy their partners and enjoy more comfortable and clean sex.
Ultimately, the decision to depilate or not is a personal one that should take into account individual circumstances. While depilation can enhance the quality of hair and smooth out skin by removing dead cells from the outer skin layer, it can also cause irritation and folliculitis in people with sensitive skin. It's important to take care of your body after depilation to prevent hair from growing