Did you know????
Underarm Hair (also called axillary hair or armpit hair) is the composition of hair in the underarm area. This hair, as most of the other body hair, normally starts to appear at puberty and growth is usually complete by the end of teen age. The release of pheromones from the axilla at this stage of human development suggests association of armpit hair with sexuality. The positive response to olfactory stimulus in mammals and the consequent intensification of the sex drive caused by release of pheromones offers useful clues as to the purpose and importance of axillary hair in humans. It has been suggested that the hair itself acts with a natural “anti-friction” quality between the upper arm and the thorax. More importantly, armpit hair naturally wicks moisture away from the skin, which aids in keeping the skin dry enough to prevent colonization by odor producing bacteria.
Today, in many countries, especially in much of the Western world, it is more common for women than men to shave off their underarm hair regularly for aesthetic reasons, a practice that may be connected to the overall body hair distribution of sexes. Prevalence of this practice varies widely, though. Religious reasons are sometimes cited; in Islamic culture, both men and women practice the removal of underarm hair for religious guidelines of cleanliness.
Competitive swimmers remove all body hair, including underarms, to make their bodies more streamlined before taking part in races. It is also common amongst bodybuilders and in erotica for aesthetic reasons.
Hipsters on the other hand, in order to emulate the hippies of the 60s as well as primitive cultures, prefer to let their underarm hair flourish and thrive. This is common for both females and males of the culture, and often they will wear clothing that is loose and exposes the underarm hair as an alternative fashion statement. The growth of underarm hair in women is also considered a feminist statement, breaking down social gender barriers.
It is a commonly believed myth that shaving hair will cause it to grow thicker over time. There is nothing about the practice of shaving that produces new follicles for hair to grow out of; this myth most likely persists because stubble does not taper like hair that is allowed to grow long and because short hairs feel coarser than longer hairs of the same thickness. However, shaving does increase the likelihood of developing ingrown hairs. Armpit hair removal must be performed more frequently than leg shaving, as underarm hair grows faster than leg hair, and if not done consistently, stubble can appear. The armpit area can darken over a period of time and even with a close shave, a “5 o’clock shadow” may be visible. Because hair under the skin can contribute to a dark appearance of the underarm, waxing, by removing the hair from the root, can effectively reduce this darkness. However, removing armpit hair, whether by shaving or any other method, increases the amount of moisture allowed to cling to the skin and if combined with a disturbed acid mantle caused by the use of most soaps (basic pH), may lead to increased body odor. Thus, the theory that having shaved armpit hair reduces body odor is invalid.