Liv Hambrett

Germany + Australia + Culture + Motherhood + Home


Hairy Women = Shocking!

I am up on Australian news and lifestyle site, Daily Life today, discussing body hair, namely what caused quite the buzz in the UK last month …

Recently, Irish writer Emer O’Toole issued something of a call to arms in London’s Vagenda Magazine. She encouraged women to press pause on their hair removal regimes and contemplate the idea of letting hair do what it does best; grow. An article in the Guardian followed and then an appearance on breakfast television, upon which Emer raised her arms and proudly showed the effects of not taking a razor to her armpits for eighteen months. Effects which are, let’s face it, quite natural. Because, let’s face it once more, growing hair is quite natural, despite the overwhelming belief otherwise.

Please do read on here, and let me know your thoughts, would love to hear them.


  1. The Wanderlust Gene

    28 June, 2012 at 6:49 am

    It’s all a bit much, frankly. Hairless females = pre-pubescent females = unhealthy male fantasies being aided and abetted by us silly females who diet and exercise our bodies to try to remain 18 and magnificent forever …
    On the other hand, short, or cropped, it’s easier to deal with the heat!

  2. Camilla

    28 June, 2012 at 8:23 am

    Some women wear makeup, some women dye their hair, some women wear sexy clothing, some women paint their nails. These things are all in the current popular idea of “beauty” and “femininity”, as are shaved armpits/legs. This idea of beauty is not always healthy, but I don’t understand shunning one practice and not others. Not shaving is maybe the most controversial practice, but still.

    I don’t like the “but it’s natural!” explanation. It’s also natural for the hair on our heads to grow freely, yet we cut and style it. The entire world we live in is unnatural. Everything is shaped to our needs and expectations. This is just one other expectation.

    But of course, if someone WANTS to let their legs’ or underarms’ hair grow (or if a man wants to shave it), it’s their decision, just as anything else related to their bodies. This near-bullying related to this is ridiculous, and people should respect others more!

  3. dianasschwenk

    28 June, 2012 at 11:40 am

    I’ll stick with shaving mine. That’s what I am used to I guess.

  4. Petra Z

    28 June, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    I remove my hair when it suits me. Sometimes my legs and armpits go months without waxing, so living in Germany by default is a way to keep it natural! But it is 2012 afterall- which means people (men and women) should be free to decide if they want to wax on or wax off.

  5. daisypierce16

    28 June, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    Im in the US, and it’s “normal” to shave pretty much everything in my area (New England). I usually keep up with my armpits, but I am relatively lazy with shaving my legs. My fiancé doesn’t really care if I haven’t shaved all week, so I’m less motivated to keep on top of it. I pretty much only shave my legs when I have to.

  6. thisislemonade

    28 June, 2012 at 11:35 pm

    I don’t really mind although I do think if you don’t shave under your arms, you really don’t need to raise your arms like that so it’s in everyone’s face – I don’t find it particularly attractive in men either, especially if someone’s hairy armpit is pushed up against my face on the train…

    Much like the hair on the tops of our heads, some of us have to work harder than others to keep it tidy. Poor girl, she has lovely hair on her head, but her underarm hair isn’t particularly well groomed lol, that’s why it looks so incongruous 😛

    I guess in all fairness though, on the hair vs femininity debate, plenty of men wax almost 100% of their bodies because they don’t like being very hairy. Now that’s serious!

  7. Valentine Logar

    29 June, 2012 at 9:09 am

    I guess it is what you are use to, a cultural thing. I will keep my razor.

  8. vegasmike433

    3 July, 2012 at 10:44 pm

    It is something completely within the confines of one’s personal preference. Nothing more, nothing less. Personal grooming is inevitably a matter of individual choice. Case Closed.

  9. Eireen

    5 July, 2012 at 8:32 am

    I find unshaved armpits disgusting. 🙂

  10. Post #71: Fun Runs and Hair Removal « The Rebecca Project

    7 August, 2012 at 6:58 am

    […] world, Bec! And one I have used so rarely before (yoga pants, Bec?). One of my favourite bloggers, Liv Hambrett of A Big Life, wrote a whole piece about female body hair recently. I get around looking far more like Emer […]

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