Social Question

simonedb's avatar

My boyfriend asked me to get rid of my mustache. how should i feel?

Asked by simonedb (50points) December 24th, 2009

basically, i have a small mustache that i’ve decided is not enough of a deal to care about. i’m kind of philosophically opposed to obligatory hair removal, and also just lazy.
he told me casually today that he doesn’t like it.
i’m not sure if i should feel upset, that he’s not accepting me unconditionally – or just be a traditional woman and get rid of it.

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114 Answers

buckyboy28's avatar

Can he grow facial hair? He might just be bitter that you have a thicker ‘stache than he does….

RocketSquid's avatar

I’ve always thought that a little criticism in a relationship is a good thing, personally. It shows trust and honesty.

I’d get rid of it, unless you’re a fan of it. I’ve grudgingly shaved off my lovingly crafted goatee for girlfriends, and let’s just say the results are pleasing.

I call mine bonsai beard.

jbfletcherfan's avatar

My husband gave me a teasing remark about it one time years ago. That’s all it took for me to go buy waxing materials. It IS unsightly. Just take it off. If he’s noticed it, others have, too.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I’ll say that if you’ve gotten to a philosophical standpoint where you realize that removing facial hair just because you’re a woman is nonsensical, please stay there – we have enough people that can’t reason themselves out of obligatory gender norms. If it is something you don’t want to do, you shouldn’t have to do it. If he leaves you because of it, let him and slam the door in his face.

ucme's avatar

There’s a Groucho Marx joke in there somewhere.

asteraceae's avatar

Well, if you’re against the whole concept of hair removal, then I don’t see why this would change things any for you. Plus you already sound kind of upset to me. If you’re against obligatory hair removal, that probably includes shaving your legs and underarms and the whole nine yards, so he obviously doesn’t have that much of a problem with it. He’s dating you, after all.

But if you feel like you’d like to “be a traditional woman” and get rid of the fuzz because it’d make him happier, that’s cool, I guess.

Grisaille's avatar

I’m with @Simone_De_Beauvoir on this one (when am I not with you?).

No matter how I feel about female facial hair – purely on ethics, I implore you to stand your ground.

rangerr's avatar

Kick him in the crotch.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Grisaille right now, beautiful, you’re not with me…I’m far away pretending to be normal for the in-laws

laureth's avatar

Would he do the same for you?

Freedom_Issues's avatar

Do you have hairy pits and legs? You said you’re against obligatory hair removal. If he’s fine with that, why not get rid of your mustache? Seems like a small deal to me.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@laureth and not the mustache either…something expected for his gender…like if he had long hair, would he cut it for you?

simonedb's avatar

@Freedom_Issues it comes down to a cost benefit analysis. it’s pretty easy to shave my legs and armpits – so i do it occasionally, like if i want to please him or i’m in the mood. i’m not a very hairy person, so while i don’t think he likes the leg stubble, i doesn’t seem to gross him out entirely.
but mustaches are more complicated – shaving seems like it will only make things worse – and bleaching or waxing or any other alternative seem to be a lot more effort than it’s worth.

tinyfaery's avatar

Feel how you want to feel. I’d be offended. Ask him to change something about himself that is natural.

All this worrying about hairy females is just veiled homophobia and brainwashing from the media.

Pretty_Lilly's avatar

Tell him that it gives you that European look !!
Have you though that maybe it bothers him ‘Cuz you remind him of his Nana !

laureth's avatar

Another point to consider: hair that is shaved comes out stubbly. Hair that is just left there will soften with time. Ask him which sensation he prefers to kiss? A stubbly, poky girlfriend, or one whose ‘stache is hard to notice?

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

How important is your small mustache to you? Is it that great of an outward representation of your beliefs? If so then keep it. Personally, I’d remove it since it’s a small concession to make to a partner who might be fabulous otherwise. A little less fuzz- no problem, watch my figure- no problem, not swear so much in public- no problem… dye my hair some un-me color and wear a style of clothes I feel clownish in- no way.

ben's avatar

In a committed relationship, I think it’s reasonable to ask your partner to make some small changes to their appearance. Ultimately, mutual attraction is important. That being said, if you felt really emotionally attached to it (or deeply ethically opposed), you can always decline, but I certainly wouldn’t be offended. Openness is key in a relationship.

He probably had to go out on a limb to say something, though, so you can be sure it does bother him. Basically, you now have some knowledge of something you can do to make your partner happy—I say go for it.

I may be in the minority here.

nebule's avatar

just… oh MY!!!.... that’s just not nice… tell him to get a hair cut and a boiler suit so that you don’t have to keep explaining him to your friends! x

StupidGirl's avatar

When I’m crazily in love with someone, my boy owns me. So I’d get rid of it.

hug_of_war's avatar

If my partner prefers me to do or not do something in the looks department I try to accomadate him not because I think he’s wants me to be what he thinks a woman should but because we all have our preferences. Not that one should do whatever their partner asks, but I’m happy to make small sacrifices, even if I know he would accept me anyway.

ben's avatar

@hug_of_war Well said. That’s a more eloquent version of what I was trying to say.

StupidGirl's avatar

Instead of you doing him a favor, you could also look at it as if he’s just done you a favor.
The devil (witch is basically just God in a scary costume, for marketing reasons) uses weird tricks to hold you back.

galileogirl's avatar

@simonedb It’s purely a cultural thing, so forget the hygiene. Hair on any part of the human body does not mean unclean.

Do you want someone else to decide what you should alter in order to be acceptable. All women have facial fuzz and as we grow older it becomes more noticeable. For some women it is denser and darker. You didn’t say where you are on the spectrum, whether you have a lush black cookie duster or just a light pale few short hairs that can only be seen when you are nose-to-nose If you don’t like it, change it. If it doesn’t bother you, don’t.

tinyfaery's avatar

LAME! I am attracted to my wife as she is, not with stipulations.

So if someone said your dick is too small get an implant, or you are getting wrinkles so you must get botox, that’s okay?


StupidGirl's avatar

@tinyfaery That’s not in the same category IMHO. What if your wife said “you smell funny, let’s get you a bath, comb your hair and put you in some fresh clothes”. You’d go “no I like it smelly?”

Fluthermucker's avatar

Someone is asking to be ball-punched for Christmas.

galileogirl's avatar

@StupidGirl We took hygiene off the list.

casheroo's avatar

I’d have to know how thick this mustache is. Because, everyone has hair above their lip, sometimes it’s just not as noticeable in people. I recall messing with the hair above mine, even though it’s blonde and barely noticeable. Then I found it ridiculous that I even cared (and wondered WHY I cared in the first place)

Futomara's avatar

How could you be uncertain of how you feel? Why would you ask others how you should feel?

Obviously, it hurt you that he asked. Why are you with an insensitive jerk anyways?

Make him a deal… Tell him to shave where the sun don’t shine and you’ll shave your lip. Maybe after he itches for a while, he’ll know to shut up.

deni's avatar

I would at first be shocked that he had the balls to bring it up, but then I would be glad he did. Its better than him being grossed out by it or whatever but never saying anything. At least he’s honest. Get it waxed and forget it ever happened.

LeotCol's avatar

Well as a guy I’m just not attracted to facial hair on women. I’m trying to be honest btw so please don’t hurt me. I wouldn’t have the guts to say it. But its just an attraction thing. If somebody asked me if I liked somebodies new hairstyle I will give them an honest answer. Yes or No. I personally don’t find facial hair attractive on women. Besides now you have a perfect chance to get back at him, tell him the things about him that you don’t like that he could change. It works both ways.

tinyfaery's avatar

Exact same. The size of a dick, being hairy and getting wrinkles are in the DNA, bad hygeine is not.

tinyfaery's avatar

I find it pathetic how many women are willing to change themselves because some guy doesn’t like something about them.

StupidGirl's avatar

@simonedb is It black or white? It didn’t matter to Michael Jackson but sometimes it’s really impotent.

scruffpuff's avatar

Just wax it off. People should be able to communicate and be honest in a relationship.

Cruiser's avatar

Ask him to shave his armpits everyday and maybe you can strike a deal!

strange1's avatar

if you want to please your man and come to a compromise then just bleach it

stemnyjones's avatar

Well, how much do you love HIM? More than the mustache?

mrentropy's avatar

As usual, I don’t see what the big deal is. If it makes you self-conscious then you’ll do something about it; if it doesn’t then leave it be and tell him to deal with it.

I don’t think I’ve ever been in a relationship where something about me wasn’t criticized. And even if something about a person isn’t liked, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a deal breaker.

deni's avatar

@StupidGirl I love you for the MJ reference. Owwwwwwww!

La_chica_gomela's avatar

Honestly, when I read this question, I thought you were gay man until I read the last line. If it was me, I would get rid of it just because if he’s noticed then so have other people, and to someone like me that would be extremely embarrassing. If you’re not someone like me, it’s different.

If it’s a principle thing, then think about where you stand, and stand you’re ground. If it’s just because you’re lazy, get rid of the thing! I bleach a lot of my body hair, and I can tell you it’s really easy. You just get a box of the Sally Hansen stuff at Walgreens, and follow the directions. It doesn’t take longer than 15 minutes from when you open the box to when you’re done rinsing it off. It just smells bad.

rooeytoo's avatar

I think it is up to you.

I wouldn’t like it on myself so I would get that permanent hair removal done so I wouldn’t have to bother waxing or shaving.

If the way it looks doesn’t bother you, then I would let it be and tell him to live with it.

I guess a lot too depends on the way he told you. I wouldn’t like a demand.

Val123's avatar

To hell with wax! Wax hurts! Shave it!
I just had a thought….if he grew a beard, and you didn’t like it, would he shave it off for you?

csimme01's avatar

Based on your question you don’t mind not having the hair but you do mind the work it takes to get rid of it. Tell him if he pays for perminant hair removal you will go get it done. That way you will both be happy!

StupidGirl's avatar

Trade for him shaving his pubic hair.

FishGutsDale's avatar

It is about what your attracted to. I hear all this feminism stuff like don’t do it because the media tells us woman should not be hairy…blah blah blah…you know why its in the media that woman shouldn’t be hairy? because men don’t find it attractive, sexually appealing etc, etc. Please note, im not anti feminist and i believe in equal opportunity for woman and all that new age jazz, but i like my woman to have less facial hair than me.

Also, im not a closet homophobic or some other freudian mentality. I just like what i like and know what im attracted to and maybe your boyfriend is the same. IMO

Val123's avatar

@FishGutsDale Weal….it’s not for biological reasons that men don’t find it attractive. It’s because of social conditioning. But, regardless, they don’t find it attractive in this society, and to me, it’s not that big a deal to conform.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I don’t understand why this declaration of his is considered honest, open, taking balls…yeah seems like a real person of character, that one…please…so what? so he said he doesn’t like her mustache and I’m supposed to be impressed with this outburst?...not only did he say he didn’t like it, but he said to change it of all things…what, what is possibly so impressive about expressing a culturally held belief that is supported (as you see in the above thread) by most everyone around him…yeah he’s a prince of courage, that one…I’m jealous

Polly_Math's avatar

Nonjudgmental and inquisitive.

smashbox's avatar

I’d get rid of the dang mustache. Apparently, he doesn’t find it attractive, it doesn’t mean he doesn’t love you, or he isn’t accepting of you as a person. He just doesn’t like your hairy upper lip.

It’s no different than a woman wanting a man with a hairy back to get his hair removed, or hair hanging out of his nose and ears to be clipped, or removed. A man has a right to ask a woman not to have a hairy upper lip, just as a woman has the right, not to want her man to be hairy in certain area of his body.

I’d get the mustache removed.

timothykinney's avatar

To answer your actual question (how should you feel?), you shouldn’t feel one particular way. Just be quiet, still your mind, and see how you feel.

As for what you should do, that is entirely up to you as well.

Good luck!

andrew's avatar

I think we’re totally jumping to conclusions in decrying the boyfriend for subjugating the OP into heteronormative gender binaries.

We can debate tact, possibly, but I find no real context in the question about the reasons behind asking for the removal of the hair.

@tinyfaery While I often agree with you, I think your comparisons are unfair. Hair removal isn’t the same as dick size. At all.

I’ve had girlfriends ask me to cut my hair, to shave my beard, to shave my moustache, to shave a goatee, to trim…areas. Etc. Sometime’s I’ve complied, sometimes I haven’t. But vilifying the boyfriend without more context is unfair. Yes, there is a bit more weight because this is a woman (I assume) and therefore is more gender-charged, but saying you don’t like something about someone, tactfully, is a far cry from reinforcing cultural oppression.

@simonedb If you feel compromised by shaving your upper lip hair, then don’t do it. Be truthful to yourself, first and foremost. But I wouldn’t jump to think that he doesn’t truly love you—unless there’s something else you’re leaving out.

AnonymousWoman's avatar

What’s the difference between that and a lot of girls wanting their s/os to shave off their beards/moustaches/etc? There is none. Get rid of it if you want to and ONLY if you want to.

laureth's avatar

For guys, facial hair is a choice, as in, it’s socially acceptable to have it, not have it, style it into a fu manchu or goatee or even leave it feral. They can change it from day to day and get compliments.

For a woman, it is pretty much socially verboten to have any kind of facial hair – it singles you out as some kind of hormonal freak (at least to the majority of society who are still shocked by ladyhair). And having someone say something about it is far more hurtful than just asking a guy to shave (or grow) his socially optional ‘stache. I bet there’s not nearly as much ‘stache baggage for a guy as there is for the hairy woman, who is probably mortified by the same shave request as would, at most, irritate a guy.

AnonymousWoman's avatar

@laureth I see your point, but I still don’t see the difference. These social rules are really, well, stupid. It’s not like she’s hurting anyone by having a mustache and she should not be judged for it. I remember sitting on a bus once with a guy who was talking about one of our mutual friends at the time and he made a mention of a razor as a Christmas present and her mustache. It’s so sad what people judge people for these days.

Val123's avatar

I think we’re making a mountain out of a mole hill. We do things for our S/O’s and they do things for us.

gtreyger's avatar

What is more important to you, your mustache or your boyfriend? I’d say lose one or the other. I would suggest you lose the stache.

Axemusica's avatar

@deni did anyone notice your avatar? lol

proXXi's avatar

You should feel glad you’re not an hyperpolitical overcompensating heterophobe like one of the posters above.

Violet's avatar

well I’m on the fence about this, I think it is rude of him to say that to you, but I personally think women should be well groomed. If your boyfriend said something, it is probably very noticeable. Imagine who else has noticed that. He may have done you a favor.
Get a waxing kit from a local beauty supply store.

liliesndaisies's avatar

It would depend on how he said it. And if he said it in a way that he was careful, i would appreciate it.

Just_Justine's avatar

I would feel offended but I suppose in his mind he thinks he is being helpful. Bottom line if you don’t mind it there, leave it. The day I start changing my appearance for a man the day I realise I’ve become desperate.

evil2's avatar

obviously its probably not a deal breaker for him, and it all depends on how he said it , but overall if your with someone and they have a preference why not do it, i am sure he grooms in a particular way to appease your likes and dislikes

Val123's avatar

@Just_Justine I don’t know about that….I mean, if he’s asking you to wear revealing clothes and that makes you uncomfortable, but he keeps bugging you, I would say that is a problem. Or insists on you doing things in bed that you don’t like. But…a mustache? I mean, is that any different than saying he likes your hair up (or down) or whatever? Sometimes we just do things for people because we love them, not because we’re desperate.

Anyway, what’d you decide @simonedb (Oh. She has 24 points. Um, I don’t think we’ll ever know the answer)

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Val123 sometimes I think a random person that doesn’t like me made up this pseudonym that is like my fluther name and asked this q to make fun of my gender expression and opinions and thought people would make fun but instead the discussion got to be pretty awesome…so whoever it was just felt stupid and let it all go

Val123's avatar

Ah! Actually, that sounds right!

simonedb's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir No, I just was looking at a picture on my wall of her and sartre.
this is the place i ask questions i’m not ready to publicly associated with identity.

@val123 i ended up not doing anything about it. maybe one day. thanks for all the input!!

Val123's avatar

@simonedb Interesting choice of user names…..

Sophief's avatar

Why would you want a mustache anyway? You should of got rid of it before your boyfriend even noticed it.

JeffVader's avatar

I think you should do as your boyfriend says & shave the damn thing off. Why in hell would any woman want a Femtache? Tache’s look crap enough on a bloke!!!

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Dibley @JeffVader A mustache on any person isn’t something they want – it just grows, naturally, normally. You’re talking more about whether or not one would want to keep it where it is.

JeffVader's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir There’s nothing normal about a tache…. they’re purest evil I tells ya!!!

Violet's avatar

@JeffVader shave?! Nooooo! Women should wax

JeffVader's avatar

@Violet In sooo many places :)

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JeffVader Well then shave your own, but don’t tell anyone else to :)

Violet's avatar

@JeffVader I shave my legs, “bikini area”, and underarms, everything else I wax. I’d eventually like to get laser hair removal.

Val123's avatar

I’m with @Simone_De_Beauvoir on this one. I wonder where this American “shaving” thing came from….is it so it’ll make us look more….child-like or something? Pre-pubescent or something?

And @Dibley… it’s “should HAVE” not, “should OF”

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Val123 Yep, here – there’s definitely a societal pattern at play here but most people will say it’s just about preference…they don’t really analyze much else in terms of larger trajectories.

Fernspider's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir – On a side note, I did see the corrolation with the usernames and instantly thought of you…

My partner commented and teased me a little about my mustache (I am part Italian and Native American so I tend to follow suit with the ‘ol hair department). I was a little hurt because I have come to accept his unattractive belly and certainly don’t tell him that he should get in shape to please me. I want him to be happy and love him for who he is. If he out and out asked me if I found it unattractive, I would be honest but I don’t feel that it is fair to make him feel unattractive and potentially insecure over it (his belly). So I expect the same level of respect from him.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Rachienz As you should, my friend, as you should.

Val123's avatar

@Rachienz and @Simone_De_Beauvoir I find it amazing what women will put up with in terms of unattractive and fixable traits in mates vs the criticism that women tend to face from their mates in similar situations.

I gotta go to bed Alana. (? Been a long, long, long since-Dillon-time long ago.) I’ll look at the link tomorrow. It’s something I’ve thought about quite a bit!


Val123's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Ah heck! What’s a vowel or two among wary friends! Noted and filed :)

Val123's avatar

It coulda been much worse you know. I could have come up with Aloopa or somethin’! I just never know what my brain’s gonna do!

JeffVader's avatar

@Val123 I always find it strange that people make the suggestion that if a fully grown woman shaves or waxes it’s in order to resemble a prepubescent child. Firstly, it doesn’t. & almost all of the women I’ve ever spoken to about this say it’s much more of a matter of hygiene than anything else. Obviously from a males perspective it will be a good thing as men are very visual creatures….. In all honesty, I think that the inability to twig that one says more about your hang-ups than in does about the rest of us.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JeffVader What does shaving one’s mustache have to do with hygiene – why should females have some sort of special hygiene that doesn’t apply to men…and who’s this ‘rest of us’ you keep talking about?

JeffVader's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Sorry, didn’t realise you were @Val123 perhaps thats why you haven’t followed the argument…. @Val123 picked up on a cheeky comment between me & violet about the merits of shaving / waxing all sorts of things. At which point @Val123 brought up the whole prepubescent thing. & it’s ok, you can jump off your high horse, by the ‘rest of us’ I meant all those who dont think waxing / shaving has anything to do with wanting to look like a little child. I understand you are abit prickly about a few things, but as we say here in England, wind ya neck in love!

Sophief's avatar

@JeffVader Are we just talking about mustaches here? I haven’t got one, thankfully! But the minute I ever do, it will be straight off. I’m female and happy to stay that way.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@JeffVader I have absolutely been following your argument but if you think I can’t answer a question you pose to another user, you let me know.
@Dibley So the mustache that naturally appears on your female form as is doesn’t make you female anymore?

Val123's avatar

I don’t get the hygiene part….hair on the body is no less hygienic than hair on the head. Or..are you saying all men with beards are unhygienic? I don’t get it.

The only reason we do it is because our society expects us to. We’ve been convinced that hairy women just aren’t very attractive. It’s an American social thing. The women in other countries don’t shave.

JeffVader's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Chastisement accepted…. now excuse me while I wind my neck in too ;)

JeffVader's avatar

@Val123 Mmmmm, well, personally I do think beards look a little dirty. However I can understand the hygienic feeling idea…. now for an embarrassing revelation. One of my previous gf’s hated body hair with a passion & insisted I got rid of mine, was rather odd but did give the sensation of cleanliness. I think most western societies have a similar social perspective on this… even the French!

Val123's avatar

The Europeans are a lot less anal about it than we are, though.

JeffVader's avatar

@Val123 Hahahahahaha…. they do have a certain je ne sais quoi :)

Val123's avatar

I don’t find it attractive of course! But, I’m a ‘Merican.

JeffVader's avatar

@Val123 Well, quite…..

Nially_Bob's avatar

I have retained this question in my active folder for quite some time under the delusion that I would eventually conceive a complex and thorough answer. Unfortunately this has not proven to be the case for which I apologise.

This is an issue confined to your relationship and as such is unlikely to require an evaluation of sociological or anthropological concepts. I would instead suggest a basic but comprehensive consideration of the value of your principles and preferences and how they are “ranked” relative to the sexual preferences of your partner and how each choice will affect him and you.

If it were my partner requesting that I, for example, shave my legs I would have little issue with it, but I tend to care little about such things. Typically as I don’t have the memory nor the perceptual skills to remember or notice that such differences are present. Accordingly, it’s probable that you would have different feelings to the situation.

TheOnlyException's avatar

Shave it off. A little criticism in a relationship is a good thing. It shows he feels your relationship is secure and stable enough and he thinks you are mature enough to accept how he really sees you.
Its not really a big deal. Love is not blind, despite the crap hollywood spews out.

Nullo's avatar

I’ve always thought that obvious facial hair on a woman is unsightly.

laureth's avatar

I think obvious facial hair on a man is unsightly, too – most of the time.

Nullo's avatar

Vivian Wheeler, owner of the longest beard ever found on a (living?) woman.
Friedrich Engels, owner of an epic beard.

MissA's avatar

Obviously, you’ve gotten every possible answer here. I would just add that whatever you do…do it for YOU. We all have something we won’t give an inch on. But, if it’s so important to your significant other, decide whether it’s the hill you want to die on.

zenele's avatar

Six months have passed since you posted this question. My question is: do you now have a moustache and beard, or did you decide to shave it off in the end?

MissA's avatar

@zenele Good gracious, I didn’t catch that time stamp. Thanks.

xjustxxclaudiax's avatar

Just do it…its not really that big of a deal, I do. Im not ashamed of it, I rather have no mustache than to have one…All women should shave their mustache, Im not the only one that does it, and there’s millions more that do it too. hahah just read this was asked 6 months ago…oh well…

RTT's avatar

If you were my girlfriend I would like you for who you are, and not ask a quest like that.Maybe once in a while I would shave it for you in a romantic way

snowberry's avatar

You should not have to ask anyone how you “should” feel. You already know how you feel. Go with it.

judochop's avatar

Buy a t-shirt that says, “free mustache rides” when you break it off with him.

Gabby101's avatar

Within boundaries, it’s important to look good for your mate. I make my husband shave, if you know what I mean, because I’m not attracted to all that hair. I would say asking your man to accept a mustache is too much. Even most women find that kind of facial hair on a woman pretty disgusting.

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