DEAR HARRIETTE: My family is very, very Italian. With our heritage comes darker, thicker hair. I consider the hair on my head a blessing, but have recently gotten comments regarding my arm hair -- typically, girls do not have dark arm hair like mine. I was bullied about my arm hair in elementary school, but then grew nonchalant about it. I am not getting bullied now, but casual comments such as, "Did you miss a laser appointment?" or "Shouldn't you wax your arms?" have been making me feel insecure. I do not mind it, but do not want boys to think I am gross because of how my arms look. Should I get rid of it for the sake of silence, or continue to deflect the comments? -- All About That Hair, Brooklyn, New York
DEAR ALL ABOUT THAT HAIR: You have to do what is comfortable for you. It is true that in our culture, many women and even men choose to shave, wax or even permanently remove body hair, including from the arms. There are safe treatments for conducting this procedure. But that doesn't mean that you should do them. Your decision should be based on your comfort level and your aesthetic choices.
Since hair does grow back under most circumstances, you could experiment and have it shaved once to see how you feel and how you feel about reactions to you. If you like it, you can continue. If not, you can simply grow it back. It is your choice.