Chinese armpit hair contest triggers online debate

Armpit hair: Gross or “if you’ve got it, flaunt it”?

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When it comes to armpit hair, it seems some Chinese women’s mantra is “if you’ve got it, flaunt it!”

Young women across China are raising their arms to show off their armpit hair in selfies in an online competition. The Armpit Hair Competition was started by women’s rights activist Xiao Meili on Weibo on May 26 to bring attention to the idea that women do not need to be hairless to feel beautiful.

In an interview with the New York Times, Meili stressed that she was not encouraging women to grow the hair on their underarms.

“I’m just saying if some people don’t want to shave, the rest of us should not think their underarm hair is disgusting, unhygienic, uncivil or not feminine enough,” she added.

However, some netizens think otherwise.

“This is not a question of pleasing anybody,” wrote Arnorosayang on Weibo. “According to our universal aesthetics, it’s just not elegant.”

Said Amy101: “Shaving or not is a personal choice. Why flash it? Armpits are quite private after all. I just hate being this high profile.”

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