Both sexes have a love-hate relationship with removing body hair. We’ve been pulling, plucking, burning, tweezing and ripping out undesirable hair since the dawn of time. It’s believed that as far back as 4,000 B.C., women were using dangerous substances like arsenic and quicklime to get the job done. Meanwhile, the Egyptians, who never did anything halfway, removed all of their body hair from head to toe. They really liked the sleek look, but it also had a practical purpose. Being hairless discouraged the spread of disease and vermin such as lice and other icky creepy-crawlies. By 500 B.C., Roman ladies had learned how to use pumice stones and even a primitive version of the razor.
Let’s fast-forward to more recent times. When did our modern-day obsession with silky-smooth armpits and legs first take hold? As far as armpits are concerned, we can pinpoint it almost to the day. In May of 1915, the upscale magazine Harper’s Bazaar ran an ad featuring a young model in a sleeveless, slip-like dress posing with both arms over her head.
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