Hair- The Body’s Landscape
While I was going through instagram an ad for a shaving company popped up on my feed. It was very different than any other shaving ad I’ve seen. First of all, the women in the ad had hair on their body.
The ad was from a company called Billie, a “female-first shave and body brand” who embrace the idea of shaving or not shaving. Watching this ad made me think about myself and my own body. I felt welcomed, I felt accepted to see women of all shapes, sizes, colors, and hair. For example, the bikini line. I’ve always struggled with it. Whenever I would go swimming I would feel self conscious because I forgot to shave my bikini line. Don’t even get me started on my back hair- thank god for high waisted…..right? But why, why should we cover up or hide what our bodies naturally do. All those thoughts and fears faded when I saw these women walk around in bathing suits- all hair in all places.
Before I saw this ad I was already going through an experiment on myself. In the past two months or so I decided to stop shaving/hardly shave. I decided to focus on the bottom half of my body. I stopped shaving my pubic hair altogether. Next, I hardly did my legs, only when it got too itchy in the back of my calves and never around the knees. Now, I’m not one to have peach fuzz and light hair. When my hair grows, it grows dark and thick. But I really enjoyed seeing the peek-a-boo of hair on the inner part of my groin. I even felt better about my own back hair, which I have been made fun of before.
“I felt confident, even sexy with my body hair.”
I started to notice that I sure can grow a lot in two weeks to a month. The next step was my upper half. I was already lacking in removing any of my facial hair so that was fine. My upper lip was “questionable”, and I couldn’t remember the last time I plucked my eyebrows. I will say, that my most favorite hair to grow out was my armpits. I think it was one of the best decisions I made. For starters I stank less and sweated less. I’m not lying! I didn’t have to reapply deodorant as I would if they were shaved. It was liberating to not worry about shaving for standards. I still felt beautiful.
I extended this experiment further-I visited my hometown for about a week . Now things are a little bit different than Austin, Texas. South Texas isn’t deprived of creatives, arts, liberals, and I guess you can say hippyish lifestyle, but in some ways it is. I felt a lot of looks while I was in public. Strangers rolled their eyes and others stared or did a double take when I would lift my arms. I didn’t feel embarrassed, just disappointed. For all I know, they probably thought it was gross or unhygienic for me. Which it isn’t. Hair is the landscape for your body. It naturally grows and thrives, protecting it. I wore myself proud and didn’t pay mind to others. Back in Austin, there was other women like me, carefree hair and all.
A few days ago, I shaved my body. Hold up! Not because I was discouraged, or scared at what people thought. I just wanted to relive the journey again. I enjoyed growing it out and seeing the process that I want to do it again and hopefully you can do it with me too. With this experiment I now know what I do and don’t want to shave. It showed me how to love my body and what I love about it. I know that I love my armpit hair and my bikini line- whether or not I want to shave there is my decision.
I want to challenge you to grow your hair. See the lengths your body can go. Don’t be ashamed and remember that other women are doing it too, in their own ways from head to toe.
This is part one to a new series of body love, stay tuned for part two. Let me know about your stories and insecurities of your body you have been though and your method of love and acceptance.