Many women have found themselves in an uncomfortable and often embarrassing situation involving body hair.
Perhaps, a warmer day meant throwing on shorts and a tank top while forgetting to shave before leaving the house.
A woman in that position will often feel embarrassment and even shame over unshaved legs and armpits. Should it really be this way, though?
The U.K. show “This Morning” asked the question, “To shave or not to shave?” During the April 2017 episode, Kate Smurthwaite and Lizzie Cundy shared their differing opinions.
On Smurthwaite’s website, she is described as a “left-wing, feminist, atheist stand-up comedian and political activist.” She shared another aspect of who she is during her television appearance.
Unlike most women preparing to go on television, her prep did not include shaving. Smurthwaite is a woman who hasn’t shaved in over five years.
On the live show, she proudly showed off her armpit. Cundy admitted she felt “queasy” at the sight of the unshaved armpit hair.
“I think most men and women don’t like underarm hair…It’s like Flintstone Ages; we’ve come a long way since then,” she went on to explain.
Cundy’s reaction certainly wasn’t the first negative reaction Smurthwaite has received. Plenty of people have shared with Smurthwaite how unattractive they find her unshaved armpits.
The judgement she has received over hairy armpits is not of great concern to her.
Rather, Smurthwaite is concerned about the message being sent to girls and women in a society that socially conditions girls to feel they need to shave to be considered attractive or hygienic.
She questioned, “What happens when a young woman turns 12 or 13, starts to grow a few hairs, and her immediate reaction is: ‘This is gross. This is vile. This is horrible.'”
Smurthwaite then shared she is standing up for those young girls by not shaving.
She later stated how she is trying to challenge society’s concept of women needing to shave to be perceived as someone who takes care of herself.
“The idea that women’s natural bodies start off wrong and bad and you have to make an effort to render your normal human body acceptable to the wider world. I mean that’s an attitude that needs challenging,” she boldly proclaimed.
You might not stop shaving because of Smurthwaite’s discussion on the show. However, she certainly brought up thoughtful points about how society shapes standards regarding appearances.
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