Feminism Needs to Calm Down About My Pubic Hair (Or Lack Thereof)
I do not have pubic hair. I got rid of it through permanent laser hair removal because I like my lady garden to be fuzz-free.
I am not a victim of the patriarchy. I do not opt for a bare vagina to please the men I sleep with. I am not deliberately suffering, paying for all of Eve’s sins. My decision to go bald is my choice, and my choice only. The End.
The men in my life don’t seem fussed one way or the other. To be quite frank, I reckon most of my bed buddies are happy to be getting their end away at all; they literally could not care less what state my pubis is in.
Maybe it’s because I’m blessed with the knowledge of my own value that I’ve never been faced with a boyfriend who dared suggest his preference for my pubes. It’s no more their business than it is the Prince of Wales’, and if they thought it was? I’d be sure to make sure the door knocks some sense into them on the way out.
It makes me feel cleaner, fresher. I like to see what’s going on down there.
It’s practical. For me. For my body. Me, mine, I.
Apparently that makes me a bad feminist, but remind me again how my cooch is anything to do with yours? I feel no social pressure to get rid of my pubes- but dear God there are some fanatic fems out there making me feel like shit for not keeping ‘em. See Women Against Non-essential Grooming, for one.
I thought Feminism was choice, but maybe Feminism is only about choice if I do what you say I should? IDK. I’m struggling to figure out the rules.
Body hair removal is no new thing. The ancient Egyptians went silky smooth by waxing with a sticky emulsion of oil and honey, a bit like today’s “sugaring”.
Upper class Greeks got rid of their pubic hair, as reference in statues throughout the world’s museums. Romans began getting rid of their pubic hair as soon as it began to appear in adolescence.
According to Get Waxing, as early as1520 Bassano de Zra was writing about the hair removal habits of Turkish women. The worldwide trend for depilating waned after queen of France Catherine de Medici forbade her ladies in waiting to carry on the tradition.
Generally The West ignored hair removal until post-war fashion saw swimsuits become bikinis, and thus ways to remove straggling and escaping hairs became vogue again. See? Practical.
Some research suggests that full body hair removal originated in Middle Eastern countries, as a response to lice, fleas and other parasites, as well as body odour, prevalent in hot climes- and occurred irrespective of gender.
Patrick Bowler of London Laser Hair Removal Specialists Courthouse Clinics wrote on The Huffington Post that “Everyone has something to say [about bikini line hair].”
“Caitlin Moran is an outspoken advocate of the full female bush. Gwyneth Paltrow went on record to say a Brazilian wax changed her life.
“BBC Newsnight dedicated a whole segment to the issue in 2011, physicians have condemned the practice, and beauty salons report that as many men as women are now seeking advice on removing hair from down there.”
We’re still learning to understand ourselves, I suppose.
And yeah, feminism is a team sport. We’re girls, it’s what we do best: chat and debate and discuss and Figure It Out. I’m not saying we can’t have a dialogue about all the things that affect us as women, from workplace woes to feminist fashion to anything in between.
But what I am saying is that ultimately, Feminism is about empowerment. And if you try to dis-empower me by dictating what, exactly, my manifesto of independent womanhood should and should not be, then that makes the Matriarchy as bad as everything else that finds ways to oppress us.
So pack it in.
Image courtesy of dull hunk http://flic.kr/p/crVcxd
Written by Laura Jane Williams
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