Body hair removal is one of the most frustrating, tedious tasks a woman must do. Not only does the female population have to spend hundreds of dollars on shaving cream, razors, wax and threading throughout their lifetime, but they also have to deal with the excruciating pain that comes with all of that.
So why on earth do we do it? Because society has told us that the hair on our body is gross.
Associate professor of women and gender studies at Arizona State University, Breanne Fahs, noticed the cruel judgments society puts on our body hair, and offered her female students extra credit if they agree to stop shaving their armpits for the duration of the 10-week course, while documenting their experience in a journal (via Cosmopolitan).
Fahs reportedly told ASU News (via ThinkProgress), “There’s no better way to learn about societal norms than to violate them and see how people react.”
The experience has been “life changing” for her students. Student Stephanie Robinson told Cosmopolitan, “It definitely [makes you] realize that if you’re not strictly adhering to socially prescribed gender roles, your body becomes a site for contestation and public opinion.”
Another student told the publication that a male friend described her pit hair as “the sludge in the bottom of the garbage can.”
Fahs also gave her male students the opportunity to gain extra credit if they agreed to shave their entire body and continue to keep it bare. The process will show males what women have to go through when they shave.
The entire lesson teaches students how beauty standards have a choke hold on women.