Female body hair has always been a contentious issue, especially in recent years. Gone are the furbikinis of the 1970s, now women are expected to be clean-shaven everywhere, even if it means spending their evenings wrestling with waxing strips and razors in the bathroom.
It doesn’t matter what the unshaven women look like either. When one of 2017’s hottest models Gigi Hadid went “au naturel” for LOVE magazine’s advent calendar, she polarized opinions – with some people praising her look and others encouraging her to shave.
Whilst most decent partners accept that shaving all of the time is unreasonable and are willing to accept a little body hair, every time a female celebrity dares not to shave, they are shamed for their choice on social media, reinforcing this potentially damaging expectation.
Here are 10 famous faces who unapologetically flaunted their body hair…
1. Miley Cyrus
Former Disney star Miley Cyrus has gained quite a reputation for being outrageous over the past few years, so it probably didn’t come as a surprise to fans of the singer that she wasn’t going to live by gender norms. Despite receiving a lot of hate for her decision, Cyrus has openly flaunted her body hair on a number of occasions. She captioned this particular photograph, “It’s Friday, and I have pink pits.”
2. Ashley Graham
A great body-positive role model is Ashley Graham. She’s not frightened of embracing her wobbly bits on social media, showing people that it’s okay not to meet society’s impossible beauty standards, and it turns out that she doesn’t conform in the hair department either.
In an interview with Glamour magazine, she said, “Honey, I have a full bush. Period. It’s about your preference and your partner’s preference.”
Graham makes a good point about taking your partner’s opinion into consideration when it comes to personal grooming. Like I’ve said, most reasonable people won’t expect their partner to be clean-shaven all of the time, but some won’t mind a full bush either.
It also works both ways. Whatever gender your partner is, if you’re not a massive fan of their current body hair, providing that you’re nice about it, you can make suggestions about what you’d prefer. After all, it really does take two to tango.
The Queen of Pop is a busy lady, so she’s not got the time to shave incessantly. She’s got no qualms about flashing her body hair on social media and captioned this photograph, “Long hair…… Don’t Care!!!!!! #artforfreedom #rebelheart#revolutionoflove.”
4. Bella Thorne
Most Snapchat stories are boring, but Bella Throne surprised everyone when she posted a snap of her leg hair captioned, “OK fine. I’ll shave.” It was proof that people can happily go a long time without shaving their legs, especially in winter when that extra fuzz comes in handy!
5. Lady Gaga
Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga are arguably two of the world’s most popular shocking female musicians right now so, obviously, Gaga wasn’t going to conform to female beauty standards either. I mean, she did dress up in drag for her You and I music video!
Gaga also showed the world that it was possible to turn female body hair into, well, art. That’s the most well-groomed underarm hair I’ve ever seen!
Aside from taking a lot of time, constant shaving can cause a number of other problems. It will damage skin, and it can cause ingrown hairs which are painful to remove. Generally speaking, skin becomes smoother and softer when it’s not shaved all of the time.
It’s one thing to bare body hair on social media, but few celebrities have had the nerve to do it on the red carpet. Mo’Nique is one of the exceptions, and she showed off her leg fuzz at the Precious premiere. Afterwards, she reportedly said that she was just “a hairy woman.”
7. Jemima Kirke
No one can deny that Girls star Jemima Kirke is absolutely glowing in this picture, but what makes it so much better is that, on closer inspection, you can see that she’s decided to go au naturel too. You go, girl! It just goes to show that female body hair can be understated.
8. Amber Rose
Supermodel Amber Rose went one step further than most body hair positive celebrities and she posted a picture of herself with pubic hair on Twitter and Instagram. Unfortunately, it was removed from Instagram, but it stayed up on Twitter and was retweeted over 50,000 times.
“When IG deletes ur fire ass feminist post but you really don’t give a f*ck because everyone picked it up already #amberroseslutwalk #bringbackthebush” she wrote in response to the social media website deleting her picture.
Pubic hair is all about personal preference. Whilst society definitely pressures women into going bare downstairs, a lot of women actually prefer it too. In the journal JAMA Dermatology, it was revealed that 62.1% preferred having no pubic hair.
9. Lourdes Leon
This is definitely a case of like mother, like daughter. Madonna’s daughter Lourdes Leon was shamed on social media for her decision not to shave, but I think her eye roll in this clapback picture sums up how we all feel about people being shamed for their personal choices!
10. Julia Roberts
Social media might have encouraged a lot of women to ditch their razors, but one celebrity who decided to do it long before the days of Instagram was Julia Roberts. She showed that women can be beautiful and hair at the premiere of Notting Hill in 1999.
Featured below is a short about women who’ve decided to embrace their natural fuzz. One thing’s for sure, thanks to celebrities normalizing female body hair on social media, more and more people are feeling comfortable enough to defy this ridiculous beauty standard.
At the end of the day, a woman’s decision – or indeed a person of any gender’s decision – about what they do with their body hair should be their choice and their choice alone. The only other person’s opinion that should be taken into consideration is a partner’s.