Any part of the body is fair game in erotica, for any part can be erotic under the right circumstances, even for people with average tastes. However, the existence of fetishes really open up the door for a variety of different kinds of people, different body types, different levels of hardcore and vanilla.
When I finally started psyching myself up to shave my head, I learned of the existence of bald fetishists. And strangely enough, this was comforting to me. I’m not the most attractive person, although I think I have quite a lovely face. I’ve never felt objectified or desired in any capacity. Some people may say that’s a good thing, and in a way, it can be. I haven’t had cat calls or creepy people hitting on me or gropes from strangers. But in other ways, it’s not so great, in that I can’t be objectified when I want to. I can’t put on a sexy skirt and a corset and go out and feel eyes on me, at least with the right kind of gaze for my ego. It’s part of the reason why I support a woman’s right to allow herself to be objectified, to wear sexy clothing, to wear things that make her feel powerful and sexy. (I do expect a man to respect that a woman’s power in sexiness doesn’t necessarily mean an invitation. Objectify from a distance, unless explicitly invited on every level of sexual encounter. Being allowed to stare is not the same as being allowed to kiss, and being allowed to kiss is not the same as being allowed to grope, etc. Better to know.) Having never felt that power myself, it was somewhat odd to realize that just shaving my head would make me an object of sexual desire.
I’ve never encountered a bald fetishist who did more than discreetly look (to the point I didn’t notice him or her), and I’m of the opinion that I don’t care how a man fantasizes as long as he doesn’t push that fantasy on me. I’m okay with a certain amount of objectification, but only if it isn’t to the degree that the person ceases to think of me as another person.
Not being able to grow my own hair out anymore – since my trichotillomania makes it impossible for me to grow my hair longer than about an inch without pulling it out – I’m quite attached to long-haired woman in my stories. I used to have long hair, and I wasn’t happy about relinquishing it. I think it is beautiful. It helps that short-haired women only recently became common, as far as historical fashion goes.
I’ve never written a bald woman in a story before, although now that I’ve had the thought and plenty of the experience (and I love it, thank you), I’ll probably do so in the future. I don’t consider myself hardcore for doing it myself; in fact, a full shaved head has a surprising vulnerability and softness that a partially shaved head doesn’t. Also, I don’t dress the part of hardcore. Wish I could, but I can’t, so I don’t. I alternate between conservative and casual. With a bald or shorn head of no hair. Similarly, I’m not sure if the baldness in a future story would be a sign of badassery. I think it would be fun if it were something else entirely – maybe alopecia, but maybe by choice just for the hell of it, or maybe practical for some such reason.
However, the politics of hair extends in every direction that hair grows, and while I try to remain conscious of those politics, I do have my own preferences. I shaved between my legs before I realized it was actually fashionable. I figure that I’ve challenged hair norms enough with my head hair, and I do tend to prefer hairlessness in general, at least where the hair is thicker. Trimming, shaving, or waxing the bush and shaving the legs and underarms. I have my own personal pubic hair issues that I’ve unfortunately internalized, but it’s hard to apologize for my preferences. We all have them. I wouldn’t force them, but if a partner asked, I would have to be honest. In my defense, I’m not personally attracted to very hairy men either. I prefer sleek body hair on men, if any.
When I write, hair is an interesting component. When I reference to times before shaving legs was popular, I do what a lot of writers do about the lack of bathing – I just don’t talk about the hair the same way they don’t talk about the smell. I’m actually not much for physical description of characters because I like for readers to fill out their preferred appearance themselves, but the color of skin and the quality of the hair always seems to come up.
However, in spite of my personal preferences for feminine topiaries, my characters tend to vary in that respect. Some are bald, some are trimmed, some are bushy – if it’s something that doesn’t personally appeal to me but definitely fits the character, I simply don’t linger in the descriptions. Even for my characters, I consider it none of my business, and as long as it the characters don’t mind, I’ll let them do whatever they want and enjoy it the same as I enjoy my own hair rituals.
From top to bottom, women and hair can be a touchy topic. So while I do go the direction the story wants me to go – whether it’s popular, politically correct, conformist, or nonconformist – I am obligated to think about my decisions regarding follicular decisions of my characters. In my novel FRIGID BITCH, MC Renee shaves between her legs, but her girlfriend doesn’t even trim. In my upcoming NaNo novel, I get to explore a hirsute woman, which in this particular case appeals to me in spite of how I prefer hairlessness in general. The whys and wherefores of characters’ hair choices may not make it textually into the stories, but I still need to have an answer on the odd occasion when I might be asked why I denuded someone’s cunt, or why I didn’t.
If I sound paranoid, I am. I just want to make sure I’m not caught off guard by a person asking me a question that is sensitive to them, to which I must be equally sensitive. It’s something that I worry about, not having a good answer or having an insensitive one. But at least on the subject of hair, I know I’m good.