A debate on pubic hair censorship for women is heating up after Instagram removed photos posted by an Australian magazine called Sticks and Stones. The photos were of two models wearing two-piece bikinis that had their pubic hair peeking out the sides.
According to Identities.Mic, both women had an unshaven, natural look in the lower regions of their bodies and it didn’t fare too well with the social media network. Instagram deemed the images as offensive and removed the account despite the number of followers the magazine had, which was 100,000.
The agency’s director, Ainsley Hutchence, doesn’t think their account would’ve been censored if the pubic hair was on a man.
“Unfortunately Instagram has ruled out natural hair that appears on all bodies of women that don’t trim their bikini lines. This hair occasionally does spill out of the sides of swimwear as it does on men in their underwear. But Instagram seem to be ok with man pubes. Clearly this is absolutely sexist. Instagram believes that women should wax or get off their platform.”
The full images can be viewed here of the pubic hair photos Instagram removed.
Jessica Lewis is a model and body image expert in NYC who believes Instagram’s decision on the pubic hair censorship is a big double-standard. She compares the incident with the latest Calvin Klein ad that Justin Bieber did in his underwear.
“Why is it inappropriate for women to show natural REAL pubic hair in images when we have Justin Bieber having his photoshopped in for his most current Calvin Klein campaign with Lara Stone? If a male can be enhanced in post to look more masculine by way of pubic hair, why can’t a woman feel accepted in society to be feminine in showing hers?”
Instagram issued an apology on January 24 over banning the models showing pubic hair in their photos. A spokesperson from the social media network explains that they “don’t always get it right.”
“We try hard to find a good balance between allowing people to express themselves creatively and having policies in place to maintain a comfortable experience for our global and culturally diverse community. This is one reason why our guidelines put limitations on nudity, but we recognize that we don’t always get it right. In this case, we made a mistake and have since restored the account.”
Lifestyle Magazine cites a study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, the majority of men surveyed prefer hair-free partners. This isn’t a big surprise by societal standards. The majority of women in the survey wax or shave their pubic hair. The data was gathered from 1,110 college-age participants total — 671 women and 439 men.
[Photo Credit: Sticks and Stones via Identity.Mic]