Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

This Instagrammer hasn’t shaved for a year: “I refuse to stop sharing my natural self”

fitness blogger leg shaving 1.PNG

Somewhere along the way, our society began to see body hair on women as not attractive, not feminine, not right. And, having grown up with magazines and advertisements drumming the idea into us, many of us internalised it.

But funnily enough, it continues to grow, so we pluck, we shave and we wax on a regular basis, starting a hair-removal habit in our teens that lasts a lifetime, spending time and money in salons and showers ridding our bodies of an entirely natural part of ourselves.

As award-winning author of The Power, Naomi Alderman, told stylist.co.uk just this week, shaving our legs is not inherently wrong of course, but it’s worth considering whether we do it for ourselves or others.

“Do you feel like it’s not OK to leave the house if you haven’t shaved your legs? And can we think about how men are not under that pressure?” she asks. “It’s absolutely delightful to get dressed up for a lovely evening, but when it goes from being a fun thing to being a chore, and a chore that men don’t have to do, then we need to think about it differently.”

Morgan Mikenas, 20, has not shaved her body hair for a year, and in and amongst her Instagram selfies celebrating gym visits and yoga positions, her distinctly hairy legs make the occasional appearance, catching the attention of her 80,000-plus followers.

Under a post in February, Mikenas writes: “I'm fully aware that my body hair is clearly visible in this picture, and that's the whole reason I posted it. I've have been getting beautiful emails from females who I inspired to stop removing their body hair and have helped send them on their journey of self love. For that reason I refuse to stop sharing my natural self.”

She told i-d.vice.com that she stopped shaving because she found it an inconvenience, and hoped her stance would continue to inspire others.

Her pictures attract a mix of admiring and horrified comments, with many apparently male users seeming to be uncomfortable. One writes, “Damnit this girl is hairier then I am and I'm a guy. I bet she ends up shaving it all off again soon though. This is just for publicity is it not?” while another said “There you got your attention [now] shave that hair off you animal”.

In a video on her Youtube channel with more than a million views, she addresses some of the criticism she’s received, saying, “Thank you for putting your hate out towards me because it’s made me a better person”, adding: “Beauty is your own choice.”

She goes on to say: “Shaving my legs makes me feel powerless. When you make decisions for others, specifically a decision that will make others see you a certain way, a way that culture has designed as ‘sexy and beautiful,’ you lose your power.”

A post shared by Morgan Mikenas (@i_am_morgie) on

Having recently moved from Midwest America to Las Vegas, in another caption she says she’s seen a change in how people have reacted to her.

“I am not afraid of my truths, of who I really am. I am not afraid to be exposed […] Since moving to Vegas I have gone into public in shorts/tank tops/ bathing suit.. fully exposing my body hair. It was a pleasant surprise for me! People out here look at me like I am no different/look directly into my eyes and acknowledge me as an authentic human being.”

In December, she said she’d “never have the urge” to start shaving again and described it as helping her “break free from expectations that society has of me and other women. Not shaving is a lifestyle in itself. Because society tells us that our body hair is disgusting”.

However the Instagrammer insists she’s not a feminist, captioning another video with the message: “Also I forget to mention I AM NOT A FEMINIST. I am just a human being who believes we are all equal no matter gender and want respect and acceptance for each and every human being out there.”

Although that sounds exactly like feminism to us.

I am not afraid. I am not afraid of my truths, of who I really am. I am not afraid to be exposed. What you see is what you get. This is me. I will not take away part of myself to make YOU feel more comfortable. I 👈🏼👈🏼am comfortable!! I'm completely comfortable in my own skin. Don't fear what will become of you, depend on no one..Because once you let go of what someone else might think of you, you are free..🌼✨ Since moving to Vegas I have gone into public in shorts/tank tops/ bathing suit.. fully exposing my body hair. It was a pleasant surprise for me! People out here look at me like I am no different/look directly into my eyes and acknowledge me as an authentic human being.☺️🙏🏼💖 (And that's how it should be) Completely a full 360 from the Midwest. Out there, if I went into public exposed, a trail of whispers/ laughter/ judgment/ negativity would follow.. but the negativity has taught me how to be fearless and confident.. and that's all you need to beat the negativity:) And I'm sure I will encounter negativity out here sometime, because negativity is everywhere and unavoidable..but I'm feeling super lucky that I haven't had to deal with that yet!:) All Im hoping to do is to teach acceptance. Practice acceptance, not judgement.💝✨🌸#onelove #inspireothers #befree #bebold #beyourself #selfcare #spreadlove #fitness #confidence #namaste #loveandlight #gratitude #bodypositive #bodyhairdontcare #positivity #passion #iloveyou #weareone #summerready #acceptance #notjudgement #physique #healthylifestyle#wlyg

A post shared by Morgan Mikenas (@i_am_morgie) on

Related

insta.PNG

This woman’s ‘born fit’ husband taught her to love her curves

school bra dress code canada.jpg

Teens take high school’s rules on bra straps and vest tops to task

halle berry.jpg

Halle Berry forced to respond to false pregnancy rumours

More

This massive star was very nearly in Hocus Pocus

Oh sisters, how very different things could have been

by Nicola Colyer
20 Oct 2017

Quentin Tarantino on not doing more to stop Harvey Weintsein

“I knew enough to do more than I did”

by Nicola Colyer
20 Oct 2017

Lupita Nyong’o says she was harassed by Harvey Weinstein as a student

“He told me not to be so naïve. If I wanted to be an actress, then I had to be willing to do this sort of thing.”

by Moya Crockett
20 Oct 2017

Mary Berry takes part in heartbreaking film about child bereavement

“I would thank him for being a brilliant son.”

by Amy Swales
20 Oct 2017

Margot Robbie writes stirring open letter to Hollywood

by Nicola Colyer
19 Oct 2017

Gabrielle Union shares a powerful message about rape and harassment

The star says she’ll “keep talking out” for survivors like herself

by Susan Devaney
19 Oct 2017

Why the singer has opened up about her mental health

The singer says it was “really, really bad” during her time with the band

by Susan Devaney
19 Oct 2017

The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Madonna’s touching tribute to a Cruel Intentions reunion

by Nicola Colyer
19 Oct 2017

Anna Faris understands why people were obsessed with her relationship

She and Chris Pratt were often hailed as #relationshipgoals

by Amy Swales
19 Oct 2017

Cher is starring in the Mamma Mia! sequel and we can’t wait for 2018

Can you hear the drums, Fernando?

by Susan Devaney
18 Oct 2017