"Evoie moi tes poils #LesPrincessesOntDesPoils" reads a photo posted by French teen Adele Labo on Twitter. The call to action translates to: "Send me your hair #PrincessesHaveHair." You don't need Google Translate, however, to understand the point: It's time to remove the stigma around female body hair.
We're an ocean away here in New York, but understand the social pressures to shave, wax, laser, tweeze, whatever all too well. Female body hair has been dubbed gross, dirty, unfeminine, even shameful, while men are traditionally free to grow hair wherever they damn well please.
Labo, like many of us, is fed up with this double standard and has taken to Twitter to encourage like-minded individuals (us!) to share images of their own body hair using the hashtag #lesprincessesontdespoils. Presumably inspired by her body-positive Tumblr account of the same name, it was wildly effective — the hashtag went viral last night with over 25,000 mentions, sparking a heated discussion on the state of body hair.
But despite the overwhelming number of people who have joined the conversation by posting images, others have called the photos "disgusting." Le sigh.
"Ummm ok but this is hygiene we're talking about....." tweeted one user. [Ed. Note: We're not here to put anybody on blast, but you can see the mixed responses for yourself by clicking into the hashtag.] Suffice it to say, many refuse to see that human body hair is natural and has a number of different functions, including heat regulation. The other side of this argument? Twitter user @louisecb nails it: "Wonder if all the fuckin idiots on the #LesPrincessesOntDesPoils tag say the same 'BUT HYGIENE' crap to their hairy dads & boyfriends."
At the end of the day, your decision to remove, or not remove, your body hair is entirely your own. If you personally like bare legs, you do you! If you want to grow out your pits, more power to ya. And if you prefer to shave 'em? That's great, too. The bottom line: It's time to stop shaming women with unattainable beauty standards. It's time for acceptance, no matter where we each stand on the issue.
See all the solidarity, below:
This loosely translates to: “Oh, and by the way: My pubic hair is longer than my hair. Suck it."
This loosely translates to: “Did you know?"