Is women's body hair due for a comeback?

Clothing retailer American Apparel recently made headlines for a window display featuring mannequins with visible pubic hair. And actress Cameron Diaz turned heads by describing hairless nether-regions as a fad. Both stories draw attention to the paradigm of "unwanted hair" and how North Americans came to take it so thoroughly for granted.

Emer O'Toole, author of the forthcoming book called Girls Will Be Girls, has discovered first hand how people react to modern women who do not shave. Guest host Gill Deacon speaks to O'Toole about her experiences, her recent piece in The Guardian, It's the year of the bush.

"The question is why does the issue of female body hair evoke such passionate surprise when you suggest to people that the hairless female norm might be a cultural construction?" she says.

What's wrong with women wanting 'unwanted' hair?

With pubic hair back in the spotlight, O'Toole thinks 2014 could be the year women embrace body hair.

"This is my body. I'm not ashamed. I refuse that shame," she says, adding that the taboo would weaken if more women simply ditched the wax and razors.

"You don't get to sell me my femininity. My femininity is not something I have to buy."

To the women who have reacted defensively to her perspective, saying it is their choice to be hairless, O'Toole responds by re-framing the question of choice in a "coercive" context.

"What kind of a choice is it if, when you're 12, you know that the choice is between removing all your body hair or being laughed at and having everyone think you're disgusting and weird?"

Some curlies down south are one thing, but an all out hair-pie like that? Phone Post 3.0

I could accept a trimmed bush, but if those legs or armpits aren't shaved, I will not stick around

I'd love to bury my face in that mannequin's bush.

Do want a forest, but can't stand bald. Phone Post 3.0

That Emer O'Toole chick has never had an orgasm brought on by a man.

DonFrye_Fan - Do want a forest, but can't stand bald. Phone Post 3.0

So, you are all for the full on bush then, huh?

God no Phone Post 3.0

WHere's the armpit or leg hair and the hint of moustache?

If you're trying to make a point do it properly instead of some faux attempt at being edgy. Phone Post 3.0

Are feminists always hideous?

I banged an ex last weekend who clearly hadnt shaved, im not a fan at all. Phone Post 3.0

Smells like pee Phone Post 3.0

I like a little hair down there just not amazon.


I dont mind some bush. Dont mind bald neither. I just tell my ol lady to mix it up now and then.

You shouldn't have to part the black sea of hair just to find the goodies down there Phone Post 3.0

hair on top...lips clean is my preferred

hair on lips = smells like pee

marketing failure imo. when a mannequin sports a carpet like that what do you think is the first thing that gets noticed? the shades?

someone's either trolling or an advertising exec needs to get fired.

See I never minded at all. Granted it was rare and only one full on bush, but it just adds to the variety.

I'm also a fan of big lips. If there was a hook up site for that I would pay whatever was needed for it.

Don't judge.

Fuck no. Shave that shit or gtfo Phone Post 3.0

I prefer bald, but that's because I'm half a pedo. I don't mind, though, if my girl has a thatch.