Thursday, 12 May 2016

Body hair

I took these photographs on a long hot day last summer as part of a project that subsequently didn't happen (I won't name names...) Anyway I didn't ever post them because I for a while held out that it might happen and then it was Winter and it felt terribly unseasonable to post such sunny photographs. I was pretty happy with this set of images; the theme was the biggest insecurity in your body that you've overcome. I wrote a little piece at the time to go alongside it: 

I've spent years taming it, struggling to get it under control; my biggest insecurity is my body hair. A small amount of very prominent Italian genes means I'm blessed with quite a lot of it. I've felt impossibly awkward about it since  hitting puberty and have spent far too much time obsessing over it. Over the last years I've started to deal with my demons. I've grown my underarm hair for extended periods (I still sometimes cave and shave it all off). Under arm hair has always been the most scary for me. Mine is very dark and fairly noticeable. What made me have a change in heart? Seeing women like Petra CollinsMolly Soda and Miley Cyrus wear theirs with pride and promote a positive attitude towards it. I've started to slowly realise that everyone has it, it's not gross or scary but part of being a woman. Many chose to rid themselves of it completely. I find shaving such a bother, in fact I find it completely tedious, that it's such a relief to no longer feel the pressure to have to ALWAYS do it! I really only ever shave it so others don't stare but recently I've started to care a lot less about that too. I bought this dress last year and a year ago I wouldn't of dreamed of wearing it out without shaving my armpits. Now I'm throwing caution to the wind and doing just that... I appreciate that body hair isn't for everyone but for me relaxing my routine has made me much more comfortable in my body.

A year on not a lot has changed I still feel like it's good to be chiller about these things, sometimes I rid myself and that's fine, other times I can't be bothered and that's fine too. Either way I think nobody should be made to feel gross//uncomfortable//sad about their choices because both are great! It's all about what makes you happy in this life, so embrace your right to choose - we are after all very lucky have that right (which is not afforded to all women out there).

This dress is pretty magnificent I purchased it from a friend and vintage seller in Falmouth, she told me it had been specially made for a dear friend in Mexico in the 1970s. On buying it I wasn't sure if it would fit but it did/does and I couldn't be happier. It's the perfect summer dress, I'm so looking forward to parading around the South of France in it (I'm off there in June- send me tips for St-Paul de Vence!) The embroidery is amazing, very intricate and SO vibrant - my favourite sort.  It does have a couple of stains on the top and skirt and I had planned to embroider over these but I actually rather like them, (I always like garments that show their history)...maybe in time I'll cover them up but for now they're safe.

I'm interested in everyone's reactions to this, body hair is always a conversation divider...  Whatever your choice I think you are all delightful, thank you for always reading and commenting such lovely things, I always read them all and feel honoured to know so many fab and vivacious women!

Outfit Details

1970s embroidered dress - Kitty Gubbins Vintage Flea Market
Gold hooped earrings - Urban Outfitters
Floral headdress - Penny MacBeth


all paintings by me



  1. I just don't get the hate that under arm hair gets. Why is it such a big deal that it causes so many people to go off? You look lovely, by the way. Was that dress made for a wedding?

    1. Me either! it's crazy. I'm not sure if it was, quite possibly, I'll have to ask the girl I bought it from. X

  2. I don't like armpit hair on myself - see, I don't use antiperspirant or deodorant, but if I have hair then I am smellier. (I'm not very smelly if I shave). Not that I have a problem with BO - in fact, some BO is wonderful, but shaving keeps me at the BO level I like!
    On others, it is all up to the individual!
    Now shaving one's nether region is a whole 'nother topic of conversation - I'm on the 'trim a bit but why do you shave everything to look like a prepubescent child?"

  3. That dress is gorgeous, I love it! Is that a peacock embroidered on the waistband? I die!
    I've never really given body hair much thought, I'm quite fair and rarely bother with shaving especially during the festival season when my access to running water is sporadic! Like Carol I think shaving off your pubic hair is far more weird. xxx

  4. Good for you!! I have never understood why it has been deemed unacceptable for woman to have bodily hair. I have fair hair so it hasn't been an issue for me really but I have friends with dark hair and have had similar issues like yours. I think you should be able to do what ever you want, hair or no hair, that is the question! That dress is absolutely gorgeous by the way.

  5. I have pretty much the same story with my own body hair: it's dark and thick and I've been shaving it since I was 12 which has always felt like such a chore. I've been embracing it more these past few years with the media attention body hair has gotten, and it's made me feel so much more secure. Sometimes I chicken out and get rid, but I'm far more comfortable with it than I used to be. I've always found it so strange why womens body hair gets a reaction of "Ewww!" when mens goes barely noticed. It's all the same? I do find it a bit disturbing as it's like women are supposed to look prepubescent or something. I remember reading once that the body hair stigma was created by Gillette to sell razors to the other half of the population, I don't know if that's true but it's interesting!
    I really love that dress, it looks gorgeous on you!

  6. Simply radiant! these photos so artistic and full of color improves my mood! thank you!

  7. The Mexicans make the prettiest dresses, don't they? You look magnificent. As we used to say back in the day, let it all hang out. You're a natural beauty. Own it.

  8. I've always wondered why it was "gross" for women to have hairy armpits/legs but it was perfectly fine for men. I am not yet comfortable enough to go without shaving, but I would love for it to become more normal for women not to shave. You look amazing and are completely rocking this colorful summer look!

  9. body hair is fab. when you see a little kitten you don't think about shaving it so why can't women see how cute their furry bits are?
    not sure if you remember, but you used to follow my old blog back in the day. I've just started a new one if you'd like to take a look ^^

  10. Magnificent dress, and thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on body positivity and under arm hair, you've obviously come a long way in accepting it and owning it like a badass

  11. I love that dress & the very Kahlo-esque floral headress!
    The cut & embroidery on that dress are like it was made for you. Just stunning.
    Frida certainly wouldn't have shaved her pits either, so there.