Let’s face it ladies, when the worst comes to the worst, we’re probably going to have a harder time adapting to our new situation than men will. Not because we’re weaker or smaller or can’t function without high heels or whatever, but because our bodies are generally more high maintenance than men’s’ are. I don’t mean more high maintenance in the sense we take longer to get dressed in the morning, but once society has broken down it’s going to be a lot harder to find things that we’re used to having, or alternatively, getting used to things that we’re not used to having.
Yes, I know we usually portray ourselves as graceful magic nymphs, all soft skin and smooth legs, but once the SHTF, your leg hair isn’t going to go anywhere in a hurry. While men will be relishing in the chance to finally grow a big ol’ manly face beard, the majority of us woman are not looking forward to growing our very own armpit beards.
So, ladies, what are our options? Well, if you’ve got enough money I’d recommend Laser Hair removal as a precaution. It probably won’t stop hair growth forever, but after a regime it reduces the total amount of hair in the treated area permanently. Intense pulsed light (IPL) is another option. It’s cheaper and faster, but potentially not as effective.
If you have an epilator, it could work for a while. These pull hair out by the roots (ouch) and help prevent regrowth. However, they are powered by electricity and while you can get battery operated ones, I’d much rather put my batteries in a torch than in an epilator.
A pair of scissors can be used to trim away the worst of the hair (e.g. underarms) and have you looking generally well groomed for the post-apocalyptic world.
In the end though, I think we’ll have to eventually come to terms with our newfound hairiness. I mean, if men can grow forests on their legs, then why shouldn’t we? It’s not like anyone is going to see our legs under our thermals anyway.
Ah, our crowning glory. A well groomed head of hair is often what makes us feel human in the mornings. I sure as hell feel a lot more attractive when my hair is in place. Now think of all the things we have for our hair: shampoo, conditioner, dryers, straighteners, curlers and enough hair product to choke a colony of sea lions. I know this might not seem like a big deal to guys who can get out of the shower and shake their hair dry in 1 minute flat but long hair is quite high maintenance.
There is a very simple solution to this, however: chopping it off. I for one am going to hack my hair down as short as possible. Now ladies, I know it might be hard to cut your gorgeous locks off in the event of an apocalypse, but there are quite a few reasons why you should.
1) 1) Tangles. Unless you have a hairbrush with you, your hair is going to snarl up pretty quickly. Tying it back won’t help- I’ve seen girls with ponytails they haven’t brushed in a week and they basically have a knotted mat hanging down their back. Plaiting and finger combing might get you through for a while but eventually your head will be a mess.
2) 2) Dirt. Yep, seeing as you won’t be washing your hair anymore it’s going to get dirty pretty quick. How often do you wash your hair normally? Once every two days? Every single day? You know how horrible your hair feels when you skip a day of washing- all that grease and grime- and that’s basically how your hair is going to feel forever if you keep it long. It will also turn into a health hazard. You could be carrying around anything from radioactive ash to the cholera virus in your tangly, greasy hair.
3) 3) Bugs. If anything is going to survive the apocalypse it will be the nit because sometimes, the world just likes to make us miserable. However, nits won’t be the only thing taking up residence on your scalp. A nice warm nest of long hair will be the perfect home for insects looking for somewhere to survive, and that’s going to itch like a bitch.
All in all, shorter hair is better hair. It’s cleaner, easier to look after, and you probably won’t get sticks and stuff caught in it. You might even look cute with a bob- think Emma Watson, but grimier.
This might be a section the guys will want to read too. Your teeth are so useful, and you’ll definitely need a good set of gnashers to survive for any length of time. Now, stockpiles of toothpaste, toothbrushes and floss only last for so long and eventually you’re going to have to use more basic methods to keep your teeth in good working order.
Swilling your saliva around your mouth and licking your teeth often can be a good way to keep tartar build-up at a minimum, but you’re really going to need something a bit scratchier to truly help your teeth. Early ways of ensuring good teeth included powdered pumice stone and scrubbing with sticks. The plant sap will replace toothpaste.
It’s important to remember to clean between your teeth after meals to reduce bacteria. Get a sharp stick and a scrap of mirror or something and spend a few minutes picking the food out of your teeth and you’ll be a happier person for it. Toothache isn’t fun at the best of times so getting it when you’re traveling across a post- apocalyptic wasteland with your crew (or your faithful dog) is the last thing you want.
However, girls and boys, to ensure good dental health in the future you have to have good dental health now. If you can afford it, go to the dentist once a year. I don’t care if you’re scared of the dentist, do it. A professional clean and check-up is the best thing for your teeth. And honestly, your dentist is not that scary. They’re mostly nice chaps who are just tired of you screeching whenever they pull out a tool. If you can’t afford to go to the dentist, and I realise that some of you would be, take very, very good care of your teeth. Dental floss, mouthwash, toothbrushes, the whole shebang. Always use a soft toothbrush as harder ones can damage your gums. Brush your teeth for at least five minutes twice a day, swill regularly with mouthwash and use dental floss religiously and you should be golden.
I think it’s important to dedicate a section of this article to our boobs ladies, because let’s face it, they’re going to be a whole lot of trouble post-apocalypse. Once you get past how sexy they are (aww yeah) they’re basically just jiggly bags that are going to make our lives harder, from accuracy with weapons to having CPR administered to running. Who has run without a bra on before? I have, and it hurts! I’m not even particularly generous in the chest area so I feel sorry for all those D-cup and over ladies who have to hold their boobs when running lest something unfortunate happens.
Honestly, the best advice I can offer is to stock up on some really good quality sports bras, the kind that basically strap your boobs down, while remaining relatively comfortable. They exist, I promise- I own some. You might have to fork out a bit of cash for them but they are so worth it, in your everyday life as well as for your emergency stockpile. Basically, your aim is to reduce jiggle.
Depending on how big your ta-tas are, you might have problems with manuvering. Your ability to fit through tight spaces, climb things and even lie on your stomach for long periods of time will be reduced the bigger your boobs are. Now, I know there isn’t much you can do about this, except get a breast reduction If you’re a serious survivalist but it is important to know your body’s limits and not, say, get stuck and starve to death because you couldn’t squash your upper body through a gap. I, for example, don’t have to worry about my boobs much but I do know exactly how big a space has to be if I’m going to have any chance of squeezing my hips though.
There’s not a lot more I can offer in terms of boob- management, apart from the legend of the Amazonian women. It’s said they used to lop off their right breast in order to increase their accuracy in archery, but I’m sure we won’t have to go that far.
I’m sure at least one girl has read through this and thought “how superficial does this chick think I am? I don’t care about body hair or whatever, none of this applies to me” but no matter how dedicated to survival you are, this next section applies to all women and in that vein, dudes, you may want to look away now. That’s right, the next section deals with…
Your moon time. The red tide. Yes, your period. I’m sorry. I know this subject squicks a lot of people out and I’m going to try and keep it as brief as possible. The fact is, pads and tampons just aren’t going to be readily available once society breaks down and you’re going to have to find an alternative unless the idea of a red river flowing down your legs appeals to you. Well, look no further, for I am your guide!
If you’re a regular pad user and can’t abide the thought of sticking anything in you, menstrual sponges or cotton pads are available. These can be washed and re-used but you really should boil them before you use them again to get rid of bacteria. This can be problematic if water is at a premium.
Another option is the menstrual cup. This is emptied several times a day and should also be washed, but is smaller and will need less water to be cleaned effectively. These are a good option as they last for years and are non-toxic.
Now, you might think that with the breakdown of society the regulation of your menstrual flow won’t be important. I mean, women in some African tribes just let it run, and what’s so bad about that? Nothing, inherently, but you have to remember that post-apocalypse we’re going to be living in a very different world and it will be so important to keep yourself as clean as possible. You wouldn’t walk around with dried blood down one arm because it would attract bacteria, flies and other nasties. This is the same principle. Also, you will always want to keep your clothes as functionally clean as possible and, let’s face it, layers of blood on the inside of your trousers is not good.
Well, that’s about it! Feel free to post more advice, other alternatives or correct me in places because I am by no means an expert and don’t pretend to be. However, I noticed there wasn’t an article like this on the web and I really wanted to get some ideas out there because I thought it might help, and because us ladies are important, of course.