Does your partner have a right to comment on your body hair?

Does your partner have a right to comment on your body hair routine? [Photo: Getty]

Beauty standards surrounding body hair have been changing of late, thanks, in part, to female celebrities proudly rocking their hairy bits and other women finding their body confidence after ditching the hair removal. 

But for one women deciding to go au-naturel hasn’t been a completely smooth (pardon the pun) ride.

Taking to parenting site Mumsnet, the mum asked for advice after her husband complained about her hair removal routine following the birth of their child.

In a post detailing her predicament she explained that her de-fuzzing routine before she had her two-year-old daughter used to be: “Underarms – most days, might get a bit stubbly if I left if for a few.

“Legs – only really bothered for a night out, so maybe shaved once a month.

“Vag – never. Or maybe once or twice as an experiment, never liked it, hate the feeling, find it uncomfortable plus too much faff.”

The mum-of-one goes on to say that when she got pregnant she stopped shaving pretty much everything and has never resumed post partum.

“I will still occasionally do it for a night out/special event but not always, and of course nights out are a lot rarer now with DD [Dear Daughter],” she says.

“I just don’t care any more, even as much as I used to, about what people think. If I go swimming or to the beach, I don’t feel the need to de-hair first.”

But her partner has a different view on the subject and has regularly brought up her lack of de-fuzzing.

“My issue is dh [dear husband] has brought up me not shaving a few times and I feel very uncomfortable about him doing that,” she explained.

“After an argument once he said, as part of a rant about how I don’t care, ‘you don’t even shave your legs anymore’, quickly followed up by ‘not that that’s important, but it just shows that you don’t care’.

“The other day, he was giving me a foot massage and commented ‘whoa, how hairy are your legs?!’

“I think I responded with a . . .  ‘quite hairy’, and he followed up with ‘what about your armpits? Have you shaved those lately?’ Or similar.

“He has also said several times in the past that he prefers a shaven vag.”

The mum concluded her post by asking if she was being unreasonable to manage her body hair in the way she chooses without asking her husband’s opinion.

She also asked what other people do with regards to their own body hair.

And people were quick to offer their opinions on the divisive subject.

Some thought that how a person opts to manage their own body hair was a personal decision.

“No one should expect you to shave or not to shave,” one user commented. “You do what you like. I don’t know why anyone gets worried about what someone else thinks about it.”

“I’ve not shaved in decades and if my husband didn’t like my body the way it is, his access to it would be revoked,” another woman agreed.

Others thought the woman’s husband was within his rights to feel the way he does.

“I think the word ‘attractive’ is the key here. It’s important to feel comfortable around our partners, but there’s a line on both sides where ‘comfortable’ can become ‘unattractive’,” one user wrote.

“When there is a loss of attraction in a relationship, it can be a slippery slope. There has to be some compromise on the comfortable vs attractive in a relationship, putting too little (or too much) effort into looks on both sides can cause issues.”

A woman has turned to the Internet for advice about whether her husband is right to criticise her body hair [Photo: Getty]

Others could see both sides of the argument.

“You are entitled to do what you want with your body hair. He is entitled to feel however he feels about your body hair,” one user wrote.

“I totally think you can do what you want with your own body hair I don’t think women should feel under pressure to shave if they don’t want to,” another added.

“But I feel that this is more about attitude than choice which means I can see your dh [dear husband] point as well.”

“It is everyone’s choice what they do with their body but equally people can’t control what they find attractive,” another user added.

“So if I decided to shave my head tomorrow, DH would say it was my body, but likely he wouldn’t find it especially sexy as it doesn’t do it for him. I find him more attractive with a beard, but he prefers to shave so again, his choice and he knows my preference and will sometimes skip it for a while.”

“My point is that you have every right not to shave, but he has every right not to find that attractive and be honest about that too. What isn’t good are the little digs and comments about it that are designed to pressure you into shaving,” she added.

The subject of body hair has been courting plenty headlines of late. Last summer photographer Ben Hopper set out on a mission to normalise body hair.

His Natural Beauty photo series saw women showing off their fully grown armpit hair in a bid to break down body hair beauty boundaries. 

And just last month Halsey hit back at an online troll who criticised her armpit hair. 

To shave or not to shave, that is the question?

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