Man Arms Strikes Again

Author: Single. Approachable. Girl.
October 28, 2011

Back in the 3rd grade, our desks were not organized in perfect rows. Instead, we sat in pairs with two desks right up against each other. I was seated next to a boy and on the first day of school, he turned to me, pointed, and said, “you have man arms!”


Girl at Desk


(I realize this girl is not in 3rd grade, but too cute to pass up)


He was not referring to my “guns.” Sorry to say, he was referencing the long, dark hair on my forearms, which I inherited from my Bulgarian grandfather. My mother’s brother’s kids got the gorgeous olive skin. I got a uni-brow and dark arm hair. But it’s not like I have a softball-sized goiter on my neck. Luckily, these attributes are fixable.


The arm situation was handled that very first week of school. After I came home crying, my mom decided it was “time to bleach those bad boys.” She promptly introduced me to Jolene Cream Bleach and I’ve been using it regularily ever since.


At least, I had been, until the this Fall-O-Weddings/Work. For the life of me, I have not gone to pick up the magic bleach creme. I even went one time 2 weeks ago, but got a call as I waited in line and had to put it back on the shelf and leave.


But what’s the big deal? I’m sure no one even notices or cares. Sure, I have crazy pale skin which only highlights the 3/4 inch hairs (yes, I just measured for accuracy).

Point is, I assumed my dark arm hair went unnoticed by all but me.


I was wrong.


I met an attractive cinematographer while out with a girlfriend and we exchanged numbers. We met up the next night (big mistake, btw. Don’t make plans within the same 24 hours).


Everything seemed to be going well until I caught him staring at my arms. And I mean staring.


I can’t explain it, but a flip switched in that moment and the night went downhill from there. He started watching ESPN on the bar TV and I got awkward and asked if he had any siblings. The date lasted another 45 minutes and I was in my car by 9 PM.


My mind keeps telling me that dive-bomb date could have been offset by any number of happenings; He was never that interested and only asked me out for a work connection (which I do have), I didn’t brush my hair that day, we both seemed a lot more interesting after 3 drinks the night before, etc.


But no. I saw him glaring at the man arms and was instantly transported back to that paired-up, elementary school desk. 20 years later, and the Man Arms have tainted yet another first impression.


I must not care that much. I still haven’t bought the secret bleaching sauce.


Ok ok ok…I have worn long sleeves ever since.


3 Responses to “Man Arms Strikes Again”

  1. Nt Says:

    Remember Marilyn Monroe? Same issue. Not a problem at all. Keep in mind-California perfection is different from perfection.

  2. P Says:

    oh my goodness. I had 1+ inch arm hair for my whole life until about one month ago (I’m almost 30). I finally bit the bullet and shaved both arms. It’s one of the best decisions I’ve made about beauty related things. yeah, it’s a little prickly sometimes and does require upkeep…but the payoff is wearing a tank top and not having to worry about my arm hair while I’m sitting across from a guy on a date when I pick up my glass of wine to sip.

  3. R Says:

    Okay S.A.G, reading this may help you ? I totally empathize with you, ‘coz I’ve the same issue.Thick, dark, long hair on my arms, and not only that, on my chin as well. I’ve got to pluck my chin hair daily,else it looks like stubble, so I’ve stopped worrying about my arm hair or leg hair, thinking if I don’t have chin hair, my life would be a lot easier. I’ve had one man ( who I wasn’t dating btw, he was a married man and just met him few weeks ago in a ballet, we both dance ) telling me it looks like my chin is shaved ( I only pluck my hair ) ! He also pointed out how my lips were pale in color and not blushing red,( yes, I don’t wear any make up ‘coz make up already spoiled my natural lustre and I’m regaining it back ) and pointed out how my hair is a little thin in certain places on my head ! I lost my respect for him !

    For crying out loud, he’s balding and has a pot belly ! ( I still didn’t point them to him after all that, ‘coz I can’t stoop that low ) And who the heck gave him permission to embarrass someone as if he’s perfect ?

    Also,I’m petite and have an A size or lower sized breasts ! I’ve had few girls point that out to me, telling me I’m flat ! And, a classmate, a guy pointing out to a fuller sized girl with big breasts, and blatantly looking at her boobs told me, now that’s a girl ! We’re both guys !

    When I shared it with my girl friend, she said I could escape from such comments by girls and guys by wearing padding, so I used padded bras, but I’d feel so uneasy when I find an attractive man being attracted to me in return thinking what if he finds out I’m padded ? So I stopped using them and I now feel so good in my own body and not having to wonder if someone likes me for me, or for the looks which is not real me only to escape few thoughtless clowns remarks or looks !

    So I look petite with small breasts, have dark arm hair ( I don’t shave or bleach – I used to shave my arm hair, but not doing it anymore ), but I can’t help plucking my dark chin hair, ‘coz it looks too unfeminine.I wish I could find a permanent solution for it !

    ( Besides all this, lot of people find me very attractive and tell me, I’m very beautiful – guys and girls alike ! ) Girls tell me I look beautiful, guys tell me I look great, all ‘coz of a shift in my attitude !

    With padded bras and shaving my arm hair, I never got those kind of compliments ! I now don’t take care of my outer body as much as I do from within, that means I do my yoga, I eat healthy(lot of fruits, greens, veggies, protein ) and my skin glows naturally now.Even without shaving my dark arm hair and with small boobs and with 0 make up,I look better than before.

    Some guys are just after physical perfection in girls ! Just like some girls are also about physical perfection in guys ! I know few girls who’d date only men of 6″ ft or taller and they’re 5′2 or less ! Good riddance though it hurts a bit !

    Please don’t feel bad for any perceived shortcoming by others, though we can’t help it at the moment.No one’s perfect, NO ONE ! By being yourself, you’ll attract people who like you for you ! Life gets very much easier that way !