Wondering whether you should grow some fuzz and join the female liberation? Read on to debunk the myth that body hair is "unhygienic" and not "feminine" if you're still not sure lovelies.
You may have noticed that body hair has been making a huge comeback within social media following the fourth wave of feminism. Here at Neon Moon, we posted on our Instagram (@neonmoonco) that nearly 1 in 4 women have stopped shaving their underarms completely as reported by Mic.com, and our post went viral! It's a sign of the times that women are feeling liberated by proudly showing their body hair. Empowering, right?
Those amongst the movement include a wide variety of feminist and body positive Instagram influencers and celebrities, such as fitness blogger Morgan Mikenas with her hairy legs to Amber Rose with her recent controversial Instagram post of her full bush, which was removed from the platform (p.s. #bringbackthebush). There are also many reasons why a woman may want to free her body of hair, from aesthetics, hygiene and feminism. Along with the progression of societal changes and the decisions that us women are entitled to make about our own body, also comes a lot of unwanted criticism (it's 2017 people!).
Maya wearing our SELENE bra
So, where did this standard of beauty come from?
It's interesting to note that thousands of years ago, women were made to feel unclean for growing body hair (you know, as a human being should) which triggered them to want to have a hair-free, smooth body. As hemlines were raised progressing through the 20th century, women felt obliged to shave their legs for example due to societal standards. The birth of the bikini in 1946 put even more pressure on women to shave all over their body. It's been noted in the 1990's, American Comedy series "Sex and The City" influenced women to wax their bodies. Some will argue pornographic content plays a major part in women being made to feel they should be hair free. But as of 2017, we are happy that so many women are saying "eff you" to being told what they should do with their bodies. Let's debunk the myths and the beauty standards.
"Ew! It's unhygienic!"
Hair that grows on YOUR body? How can that be unhygienic? Well, some people seem to think so. A popular opinion amongst those who opt to shave claim that letting the fuzz flourish is bad for your health, especially for your vaginal health, including being vulnerable to contracting STI's. However, that is not true. According to Dr Vanessa Mackay of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, removing pubic hair ultimately removes the barrier which naturally keeps you clean. If you're embracing your natural bush, then you're decreasing your chances of bacteria entering your lady parts. As long as you regularly wash and use protection during sex then it's okay (and you definitely will not smell!). The NHS also state on their website that shaving too much can do more damage than good, as shaving can make you more prone to skin irritation and infection because you are removing that barrier of hair. Methods such as laser hair removal, hair removal cream and waxing can also cause damage to your body as a lot of products in the beauty industry are not regulated to be safe for your skin. Yikes!
"Women are supposed to be hairless!"
Do not get us started on this one!
There is no right or wrong way with how you deal with your body hair darlings. What's important is that you are allowed to make the decision about what you do with your body. It's no shocker that western beauty standards have made society conform to ideals such as women needing to be perfect, and within that ideal of "perfect" comes no body hair. If a woman is hairy, it could be because of her genetic inheritance, in which she should have the absolute right to be proud of where she has come from and show off her body hair if she pleases. Femininity should not be associated with being shaven. That's why more women are continuing to break down the barriers of gendered social control and today's beauty standards that say only men should have body hair and us women shouldn't. Here at Neon Moon, we couldn't be more proud!
So, should I stop shaving my body hair?
Babe, only YOU can answer this one. If you decide to ditch the razors and the waxing and grow your body hair, it will not affect your health! As long as you keep your body clean, then you do what the hell you please girl! If you prefer to feel smooth, great! Try not to go overboard with shaving and give your skin some rest from the razor and use the right products for shaving to decrease your chances of irritation. Ultimately, body hair is not unhygienic. You do you and don't let any societal opinions stop you from being otherwise. Be the hairy queen that you are and keep kicking today's beauty standards in the arse!
Where do you stand on shaving your body hair? Do you shave yours? If yes, why? If no, why?
Let us know in the comments darlings!