17 different women, 36 crazy children, 0 babies in utero
Adventures, Advice and Questions from a group of Mormon women who met in Queens, NY and have now scattered all over the place.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

A Hairy Situation

So I'm just going to come right out and ask - and this is really and truly important stuff here, so prepare yourself for a deep and soul-searching discussion: Was there a secret class in middle school on how to shave your legs? Because I must have been absent that day. I'm an intelligent, (almost) 30-year-old woman, accomplished in many areas of her life, who is entirely deficient when it comes to hair removal.

Okay, so that might be a bit of an exaggeration. I've got about 90% of the legs down pat. My problem? My knees. I don't think I have EVER properly shaved my knees, and I'm really not exaggerating here. I end up either with cuts or, quite possibly worse and much more often, thinking I have done it well only to find completely hairy patellas when I emerge from the shower. And when you're a mommy like me who doesn't get a nice long (shaving time) shower very often, doing it well the first time is pretty darn important!

I really don't think I have horribly misshapen knees, but I'm not going to rule anything out here. Seriously, this isn't brain surgery, you'd think with closing in on 2 decades of regular practice I would have worked it out by now. But it's time for me to humble myself before you, fellow women with smooth and glorious legs, and beg for your assistance. So, what's my problem? Thoughts? Tricks? Advice? Tutorial video clips? And yes, I'm serious here. My knees deserve better than they're getting in my care.


  • I must have missed out on that class too. Or maybe it's something you learn when you have a lot of sisters and you learn together or learn from the older one. But growing up in a house full of boys (well besides my mom) there are many areas I think I missed classes on and don't feel I'm as well informed as others. I look forward to what others have to say, since most of the time I too get out of the shower to have to go over them again, that is if I even have time to shave
    posted by Blogger Erin at 8/02/2006 11:12:00 AM  

  • There wasn't a class but there should have been!

    My advice is to try several different brands of razors - I personally like the Venus ones.

    My trick with my knees is I completely relax my patella and go very carefully over it - works everytime. If I try shaving my knee while it's bent or locked straight it's a recipe for cuts.
    posted by Blogger chloe at 8/02/2006 12:12:00 PM  

  • I second the Venus razor! Or any brand that seems sort of bendy (if that's a word?) and can handle the round knee area.

    Yeah, no class... but I don't think you're the only one out there with this problem!
    posted by Blogger Beth at 8/02/2006 12:45:00 PM  

  • Personally I've always found razors marketed to women to be completely inferior to those marketed to men. All of the women in my family (and men, too, of course) use the Mach 3 and it's a dream. I go over the area once and the hair is gone. Relaxing the patella is a good tip, though.
    posted by Anonymous Emily at 8/02/2006 01:21:00 PM  

  • I like to use something like Nair, or i guess those Veet razors do the same thing. Its a great way to get rid of the hair quickly without cuts. I usually lay it on and then walk around the house doing other things for the 5 min. it needs to be on. then quickly wipe it off.
    I remember SO SO often in my teenage years walking around with bandaids all over my legs to keep the cuts from bleeding. Its makes me cringe when i remember. owwwie!
    posted by Blogger ksl at 8/02/2006 01:56:00 PM  

  • The only thing my mom told me was, "Be careful not to cut yourself." She had a nice solid razor herself. I don't know why I didn't pick up on that tip.
    I dread shaving in summer.
    I have had good luck with cheap razors, as long as I change them regularly, but I always cut myself. I never had good luck with Nair. Does it work better on certain types of hair better than others?

    You know the thought of not shaving crosses my mind, but then I remember my mom fitting an off the shoulder prom dress to an Austrian exchange student and decided that shaving my armpits was better than growing little bushes in there.

    Ah, the joys of womanhood, or rather American womanhood.
    posted by Anonymous A Normal mom at 8/02/2006 02:30:00 PM  

  • I usually don't get all the hair off my knee either. I don't worry about it though!
    posted by Anonymous JKS at 8/02/2006 02:33:00 PM  

  • I concur with the Venus razor and the "relaxed patella"...
    posted by Blogger Cheryl at 8/02/2006 02:44:00 PM  

  • Funny story: One day my mom asked me how much of my leg I normally shave. I told her (up to my knees, it's too much hassle and who really sees my knees anyways?) then asked why she was curious. Apparently my brother asked her how much of the leg most women shave because his wife has been insisting that most women only shave up to their knees.
    Now, for my SiL that may well be true, but even if it's not true, how would her husband ever really go about finding out? He daren't look too closely at other women's legs. And the only woman he could ask was my mom, an individual woman that my SiL could brush off as unusual. She never has to shave more of her leg than she really wants to, because the only man who would care, will never know the difference!
    Sheer Genius.
    posted by Blogger Starfoxy at 8/02/2006 03:01:00 PM  

  • I liked that last comment. I shave my whole leg. I hate feeling hairy. I do like Venus too but use whatever I can get sometimes! I never had luck with things like Nair either and I just keep my leg relaxed but pretty straight going over the knee. I don't think ANY woman gets them all but who cares! We are beautiful with or without!
    posted by Blogger melissa c at 8/02/2006 03:47:00 PM  

  • The other thing to be careful of is to rinse your razor often. Sometimes the shaving cream, or just cut hair, will get stuck in the blade and will cause you to miss spots all over your legs not just on your knees.

    The other thing I do is skip the shaving cream all together on my knees. On the uneven surface of my knee the cream will sometimes make the razor slide sideways, which leaves a long nasty cut. Of course my skin is really tough, I don't get razor burn easily.

    Has anybody tried the new Veet stuff? I didn't like the Nair when I tried it 8 years ago, I felt like my skin was burning. Is the Veet any different? Or basically the same?
    posted by Blogger Trivial Mom at 8/02/2006 06:30:00 PM  

  • My other trick is I use hair conditioner instead of shaving cream. After I get out of the shower I don't even need to moisturize my legs because the conditioner has them all ready to go. I've also found that I have a little more control of my razor with something other than shaving cream.
    posted by Blogger chloe at 8/02/2006 08:00:00 PM  

  • I appreciate everyone's comments and it's good to know I'm not alone in the war with my knees!

    I've been using a Venus razor for a while now, maybe I need to try something else though - I think Emily's suggestion of a men's razor would be a good direction to go.

    I'll have to try "relaxing" my patella... what the heck does that mean anyway? Naw, I get it, I just think the concept is pretty funny.

    I've tried Nair once, but it was just icky and messy and I didn't really like it. I know I put a lot of chemicals on and in my body, but that just felt like going over the line for me. I've tried the conditioner route (like Chloe mentioned) and I actually really like that over a special shaving product. Plus it's a great use for my vast collection of hotel freebies! I don't know that I got better results from it, but I liked the feel of shaving with that over a cream or gel, which sometimes feels like overkill.

    Thanks for your tips! Let me know if you think of anything else next time you shave.... :-)
    posted by Blogger marian at 8/02/2006 08:16:00 PM  

  • I'm all about the mens razors. I have never figured out why womens are subpar??? Anyway, go with the Mach 3 - it's great.
    I am also really bad at shaving my legs. It takes me forever. My roomate in college was 6'2 and could shave her legs in a few minutes. I am 5'1 and when I shave my legs my showers stretch soooooooo long. Ugh.
    posted by Blogger Melissa at 8/03/2006 09:11:00 AM  

  • I remember sitting in 8th grade gym class being so self concious of my hairy legs. Every other girl in my class was already shaving and my mom hadn't even mentioned it to me (and I was too scared to ask her about it). I went home and found my older sister's pink daisy razor in the cabinet and tried to shave. I proceeded to take a nice sized slice of skin of my right shin and then another slice off the skin over my achilles tendon. It was horrible. I didn't try again for a while.
    posted by Blogger TftCarrie at 8/03/2006 10:07:00 AM  

  • The knee thing happens to me all the time. I swear they just hide until the razor is gone and then they pop out again.
    posted by Blogger Aimee "Roo" at 8/08/2006 10:51:00 PM  

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