I am all for supporting equality between the sexes; splitting the cost of a restaurant bill, being career driven and independent financially. In this day and age, I think that the work of the suffragettes has completely proven its worth, as we stand at the threshold of a whole new age, with equal rates of pay for women, and the rise of career-driven, and powerful women such as Angela Merkel in politics. It is certainly far from perfect, with misogyny still bearing its ugly head at every opportunity, but it cannot be denied that positive change is on-going.
However, certain protests to promote feminism and reaffirm the equality that women have been striving towards for generations seem somewhat extreme in my opinion. On Thursday 3rd October “Project Bush” goes under-way, generated by creative agency Mother London and calling to action women to stand up to the pressures of modern society and present their bushes in all their glory, whether that is waxed, shaven or never before tended to.
Call me narrow-minded, but I happen to disagree with this form of empowerment. I can see the basic principle behind the concept. In a media world where women are brainwashed into needing the perfect figure, the perfect hair, the perfect smile, the perfect make-up and the perfect attitude towards their role within society, I can understand why such hostility towards airbrushed, photoshopped photography can have arisen. It could be seen as a way of seizing back the way that women are photographed and allow women to feel entirely comfortable with their bodies without the pressures of pruning and grooming themselves to fit in. The waxing culture has become so mainstream that many young women now do not see it as a CHOICE. They deem it as a requirement within society, and “Project Bush” wants to celebrate the attractiveness of choice.
Aside from the fact that controversial images of ladies’ lady-parts are sure to make people – including the participants – highly uncomfortable, it is also contradictory of their intentions. Starting a much stressed-upon debate about the do’s and don’t’s of pubic hair is unlikely to achieve its desired results. Regardless of the animosity of these images, using pubic hair to protest women’s rights within society seems outlandish, taking away the privacy of women that is so protested against. Rather than celebrating women’s inner beauty, it is using it as a means of exposing the flaws in the media and the representation of women.
Admittedly, participation within “Project Bush” is entirely voluntary; however I feel that it reinforces a whole new kind of pressure for young women to strive for individuality. What is wrong with simply doing what is best for you, rather than feeling inclined to either fight against the system or find yourself swallowed within it? I believe that women should follow whatever suits them the most; whether that is waxing it all off or letting their gardens grow.
The only way to feel truly comfortable within your own body is to follow the beauty regime that makes you feel the most fulfilled. As the old saying goes, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”