Sheila Santiago for 'Natural Beauty' by Ben Hopper (2018)
“I stopped shaving my armpit hair about 5 years ago, and the rest of my body hair 4 years ago. I was tired of constantly getting rid of my body hair since the age of 11.
I started wondering "Why?”
- Why do we go through a painful process to get rid of something we were born with that keep growing? Why is being shaved considered to be more feminine? Why is body hair seen as something dirty?
...It’s all about these ideas society has put into our heads and it doesn't even make sense, so that was it for me, no more painful process to remove my natural hair.
It made me feel more myself with body hair. I feel beautiful and it has helped me accepting and loving my body, feeling comfortable in my own skin.
At the start, I was scared of what people would say and I found most of my friends being really supporting about it. I've had people telling me I look "dirty", "smelly" and that no one would have sex with me if I didn't shave... But I've also had people encouraging me and telling me it's natural and beautiful.
I would like everyone to allow themselves to do what feels best for them instead of looking for someone else's approval.”
– Sheila Santiago (2018)