24 Esther Calixte-Bea is finally embracing her pubic, chest, armpit and leg hair
After years of bullying, shaving and waxing, Esther Calixte-Bea has decided to let her chest, armpit and leg hair grow — and she says she feels “sexier” than ever.
“I don’t want hair to be an obstacle anymore,” the 24-year-old artist from Montreal, Canada, told Caters News. “It has taken me most of my life for me to accept my body and embrace who I am.”
Although she may have more body hair than most women, it’s completely natural: Calixte-Bea’s ancestors are from the Wè Tribe of Ivory Coast, Africa. “The women in my great-grandmother’s time were very hairy, and it was seen as beautiful,” she said. “There is no medical explanation behind my hair — I am just a hairy person.”
For years, Calixte-Bea felt extremely insecure and depressed, even suicidal at times. “I obsessively shaved in school to make sure nobody would see my hairy chest,” she said. The artist would break out the razor if even one hair broke through. Hair removal — especially waxing — was “tremendously painful. It was more hassle than it was worth.”
But in May 2020, enough was enough. She ditched her razor and started embracing her natural look.
“I had to push myself at the start by walking out with short shorts with leg hair,” said Calixte-Bea.
After a few weeks, she felt better.
“It is the best thing I have ever done, as I feel sexier and comfortable in my own skin,” she said.
It hasn’t been the easiest transition. The young woman is sometimes met with stares from strangers. Once, someone filmed her. But online, she’s received nothing but support.
“I have received thousands of messages from women all over the globe who thought they were alone,” the Canadian said. “I have shown them that facial and body hair is nothing to be ashamed of.”
Calixte-Bea wants others to know they’re beautiful just the way they are.
“If women weren’t supposed to have hair, we wouldn’t grow it,” she said. “It is the society that tells us to shave.”
Her paintings often feature women that look like her, with hair on their bodies. It’s just another way for Calixte-Bea to normalize female body hair.
“I refuse to victimize myself because of it,” she said. “I have decided what beautiful is for me.”