A woman has revealed how she finally decided to stop shaving her body hair – because she feels society puts pressure on women to stay smooth.
Secretary Sonia Cytrowska, 28, from Gdynia, Poland, first started to de-fuzz when she was just 12 and says airbrushed images in magazines left her feeling insecure.
However, in 2017, Sonia says she decided to ditch the razor for good – and hasn’t looked back, thanks to the support of her husband, who she says took a little while to appreciate her new look.
Sonia Cytrowska, from Gdynia, Poland, has let the hair on her body grow after making a stance against society’s expectations of women
Her Instagram account regularly sees her posting beautiful images of her body with natural hair
She now hopes that the beautiful images of her hair-adorned body that she posts on Instagram under bodyhairmovement will help others fight against the unforgiving beauty standard.
She adds: I choose not to shave because I find myself beautiful and it’s very comfortable to live that way but of course days where I question why I choose to fight with all these beauty standards and ask why I am so stubborn.
‘I receive a lot of messages from women who are at the very point where I was one year ago. I talk with them, sometimes we send pics and we support each other.
Sonia says she would spend at least three hours every week trying to remove her body hair from her armpits, navel and legs.
Sonia admits that her husband of three years, Tobiasz, struggled with her natural appearance at first but said that their love conquered any of his confusion on the matter.
The 28-year-old explains: ‘I was looking at other body hair positive accounts and it was much easier for me to start my new, hairy life with support of others, both men and women.’
Sonia admits that her husband, Tobiasz, took a little while to appreciate her new look but he fully supports her campaign against making women feel like they should shave their bodies
Insecurities: Sonia says it hasn’t been easy posting images of the hair on her body but that she now feels liberated
At home, with my husband or friends I feel safe and accepted. But it is still hard when I meet new people to explain it…
‘I’ve been shaving since I was twelve and all my life I was feeling worse and less worthy than other girls who didn’t have so much hair on their bodies.
She says she started her Instagram account because she felt like other women must be feeling the way she does – and that plenty of men would also appreciate her look.
‘At first my husband was shocked because he’s known me for eight years and I was always shaving all my body.
‘And actually, he prefers a shaved appearance but we talked a lot, I explained to him that it is so important for me, to live with my natural body hair and he decided to accept me and support me.’
Plenty of other women have now got in contact with Sonia to say they too have been inspired by her online movement
Sonia says searching for new jobs can be intimidating because she feels under pressure to look a certain way
‘There were tough times but conscious love and commitment won. The hardest thing was to accept myself and to feel confident with my hairy body in front of others, even if they whisper and stare at me.
‘It was hard to accept that sometimes people can reject me if they will know how I really look like. Body hair in my society is a taboo’
Sonia admits that she does still have days where she feels under pressure to look a certain way but she hopes that through social media she can show other women that having body hair is both normal and beautiful. She shared her advice to others.
‘At home, with my husband or friends I feel safe and accepted. I can easily show my body hair and it is natural for me.
‘But it is still hard when I meet new people, for example when I was searching for a new job or going to lectures at university.’
Her dream is, she says, to see women shaved and unshaved, feeling comfortable in their choice
‘I hope that my account shows to other women that body hair is beautiful and normal’, says Sonia
Sonia says she’s choice is the key factor: ‘My biggest dream is to see women shaved and women with unshaved body hair in the streets of big cities.
‘Both accept each other, because what they do with their body is their choice.
‘I hope that my account shows to other women that body hair is beautiful and normal. You can be an independent woman, working in a large corporation, studying in your dream direction, be loved by husband and still have a hairy and natural body.’