Reasons for Excess Hair Removal
The reasons for removing hair are generally personal. For one it's a fashion statement, for another a desire to feel cleaner and for another a need to increase confidence to fit in more with the norm of the time and culture.
Hair Removal for Hygiene Reasons
Hair removal by various methods has been carried out for centuries - certainly the Ancient Egyptians are known to have used the practise, removing hair from all over their bodies to reduce infestation by lice, fleas and other parasites.
Hair is often removed even today for hygienic reasons - for example the removal of underam hair helps prevent odor caused by the bacteria normally trapped in the hair working in combination with natural sweat.
Social and Cultural Reasons for Removing Hair
There is usually an idea in each culture of what constitutes beauty and this usually includes an ideal amount of hair for both men and women. Those whose level of body or facial hair does not conform to the ideal, tend to feel that they need to remove hair to conform to what is seen as socially acceptable.
Many men in the West remove facial hair daily by shaving although sporting a beard is reasonably acceptable. Sometimes this is because it feels more comfortable to be clean-shaven or because of a dislike of the look of the beard when it grows.
Removing Hair for the sake of Fashion
Hair is often shaven from the whole head by men (less often by women) as a fashion statement and it has also been fashionable for men to leave a partial beard on their faces in various forms for example a goatee or a thin elongated sideburn.
There was shock, horror and astonishment when Julia Roberts dared to show an unshaven armpit on the red carpet. The fashion dictates that designer evening gowns require a bare armpit and skimpy bikinis require no hair peaking out at the edges.
Hair Removal for Sexual Reasons
As well as for fashion reasons (and the wearing of tiny swimwear) women may also remove some or all of their pubic hair for sexual reasons. Pubic hair removal is done to increase visual exposure of the genitalia and/or facilitate access to the genital area by removing the barrier of hair, and for the purpose of cleanliness.
Male to Female Gender Reassignment
Transsexuals usually often go through a painful process of removing facial and body hair to conform to the norms of their new female gender. When surgery is done to create a neo-vagina from the skin of the penis and scrotum, hair is removed from these areas to prevent the problem of hair growth occurring inside the neo-vagina after surgery.
Hair Removal for Religious Requirements
There are a number of religions which either require a shaven head or forbid the shaving or cutting of particular areas.
Hair Removal in the Military
Most military institutions require males to have short hair and be clean shaven. This is to increase uniformity among the troops and also ensure that equipment can be more easily employed without the interference of hair.