This Woman Stopped Shaving for a Year to Promote Body Positivity—and Here's What She Learned
This article originally appeared on InStyle.com.
After years of shaving, fitness blogger Morgan Mikenas was tired of adhering to societal norms.
So, she put her razor to the side and decided to stop removing the hair from her underarms and legs for a year. Last month, Mikenas explained in a YouTube video why she decide to make the change, saying, "I guess my number one reason that I stopped is that [shaving] took so much time."
"It took up so much of my time to get in the shower and have to shave everything and then wash my hair and then wash my body," she continued. "One day I was like, 'Why am I doing this anymore?'"
"I was worried that if I let my hair grow out, I would feel dirty and ashamed because I didn't feel feminine," she added. "Then, I would feel obligated to go shave my legs so I would feel good and feel sexy. Not anymore."
Mikenas went on to discuss a time when she was in middle school and was teased by other girls for having hairy legs. "I came home to my mom, I was crying, and telling her to teach me how to shave my legs. That's when it all began," she said. "I would shave my armpits and my legs. It felt good, it felt silky."
She's even teased now for having hairy legs by kids who are way younger than that—kindergartners at a school where she works. "[They say] 'Eww, you look like a man. You didn't shave," she said. But, it doesn't phase her like it used to. "What does that say if that is how these kids are being taught," she continued. "I've even seen children in childcare, in the third grade, who are shaving their legs. I didn't shave my legs until middle school."
Mikenas who thinks it's "unfair" that women have to adhere to the "societal norm" of shaving. "I just think it's unfair to people that think they have to be in this culture norm," she continued. "You should just do whatever makes you feel good."
And now that her hairless year is up, it doesn't look like she's going back to a clean-shaven look any time soon. "I love my body hair," she said. "I love the hair that grows on my body."