activism, Alex Andrews, body, body hair, domestic violence, Feminism, Feminist, fundraising, Gender, get hairy february, hair removal, hairy feminism, jamie macfadyen, misogyny, sexual assault, shaving
Some of you may have realised by now I have feminist leanings. If you haven’t you haven’t been paying attention.
I recently came across a campaign called Get Hairy February. Founded by Alex Andrews, the concept is simple; grow out your body hair for the month of February, spruik the bush, get people to pay you money for it, and the money gets donated to organisations working with people experiencing domestic violence and sexual assault.
For more info about what the campaign stands for, background and further reading, go to their beautiful website.
A while ago a Facebook group I’m in put out a call for women who choose not to remove their body hair to model for this campaign.Of course I put my hand up!
The shoot was held in an enormous warehouse/photography studio in North Melbourne. There were seven women involved, including the founder Alex. Photographer Jamie MacFadyen was behind the camera and, under direction from Alex, helped with the art direction.
As well as individual photos I participated in some group ones, you’ll have to follow GHF to see those. The two photos in this post will be used for publicity for Get Hairy February on social media. Everyone involved volunteered their time, and were lovely to work with.
I also had the opportunity to speak with Alex about what my hairiness means to me. Talking with her, I realised how much internalised misogyny I carry around with me, especially about the hair. Externally it may appear that I don’t care what people think of my gender presentation and my hair but I do. I don’t want to be shouted at in the street because I don’t see the point of adhering to beauty standards that involve painful and time consuming removal of my natural hair.
Then again, I frequently wear make-up, I wear sleeves and stockings at work, but I tell myself it’s to cover the tattoos on my arms, and not the hair under them. I guess how I present myself is not an all or nothing affair.
Now that I’m one of the faces of the campaign, I’ve signed up to fundraise. Go here to donate to my page: https://www.gethairyfebruary.org/fleur-blum
I encourage you to free the bush, even if it’s just for February. If your bush is already free wave it in the wind! If you have some money, give it to the campaign, it’s good.
Let’s raise awareness of oppressive standards of beauty and help end gendered violence.