• Sweden edition
 
Swedish woman's hairy armpit hurrah goes viral

Swedish woman's hairy armpit hurrah goes viral

Published: 13 Mar 2012 12:41 GMT+01:00
Updated: 13 Mar 2012 12:41 GMT+01:00

The incident took place shortly after Swedish singer Loreen had been announced as the artist who would represent Sweden at the Eurovision Song Contest finals later this spring.

Seconds later, cameras from Sveriges Television (SVT) swept over the audience and showed fans' arm waving jubilance, panning past one female fan whose clearly visible underarm hair appeared momentarily on live TV and in the living rooms of an estimated 4.1 million Swedish television viewers.

One avid Facebook user in Sweden managed to take a screenshot of the woman, which he posted online – an image which then spread like wildfire across the site.

Within hours, thousands of people had “liked” the image, and hundreds had shared the image on their own Facebook pages, with an overwhelming number of crass and bullying comments attached.

Daily Aftonbladet even ran a story “Sweden’s most famous unshaved armpit” which sparked people’s interest even further, and prompted Lina Ehrin to come forward as the armpit’s owner.

Ehrin, a 32-year-old librarian from Ludvika, central Sweden, has shot from oblivion to nationwide fame overnight - and can’t understand why.

“This is absurd, very absurd,” she told The Local.

“I mean, there are wars going on in the world, yet crazy people are sitting here commenting on this.”

However, the bullying has not succeeded in fazing Ehrin, who claims she is too old to be affected by people who sit at home and write comments.

“Everything is so fast on the internet, people don’t think they can hurt people but then can. I’m fine, but I’m also glad I’m older, if I were 15 I would be really hurt right now,” she said.

“I can’t believe a little bit of hair on a woman is such a big thing, especially not after it was International Women’s Day last week,” she said.

One of Sweden’s most prominent bloggers, Hanna Fridén, a self-described feminist, took issue with the reaction of the Swedish public.

“Most people aim to bully. With words like that she is disgusting. Retarded. Should be ashamed. That she was embarrassing. Some aimed to defend her, but the majority bullied," wrote Fridén on her blog.

“It's disgusting when people write these things, just because she’s going against the standard appearance. She has chosen not to shave under her arms and people are incredibly provoked by it.”

“The fact that the image includes her face makes it even worse. She has not chosen this. It’s extremely problematic and bullying.”

Since the online storm, the original posting and all its comments have been removed from the internet.

Meanwhile, a pro-hair group continues to soar in popularity, with armpit-hair enthusiasts having started their own Facebook event to stand up for non-shaving and share images of themselves proudly showing their own hirsute pits.

In the description of the group, “Ta håret tillbaka!” ('Reclaim the hair), administrators have expressed the positive body image goal of the group.

“We decide ourselves how our bodies look. Fight against net-hate and net-bullying. Love conquers hate,” they write.

The online event organized by the hair-happy Facebookers has already attracted 6,000 people, with many more thousands invited.

When told of this, Ehrin chuckles.

“Well, that’s nice to hear. Maybe we can turn it into a positive thing. Maybe this will get people in Sweden to think,” she told The Local.

“It’s 2012 for goodness sake”.

Oliver Gee (oliver.gee@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

13:23 March 13, 2012 by Flappytango
"The incident took place.." haha
13:49 March 13, 2012 by petpet
That´s simply showing that the an important part of the population in Sweden are as as mediocre as in any other country, guided by the philosophy : *if you re not like me you re an enemy*. There is lots of room for improvement.
14:16 March 13, 2012 by glenquagmaire
Problems of sweden!!!
14:57 March 13, 2012 by millionmileman
When I went plane-spotting as a youth this is how we identified the Air France Planes under their wings. But never with SAS!
15:06 March 13, 2012 by foxpur
@petpet

Sadly the battle cry of many wars, racism, and just about any other discriminations....
15:16 March 13, 2012 by Tanskalainen
I'm surprised it wasn't braided.
15:25 March 13, 2012 by Tamm O'Shanter
...or plaited
15:29 March 13, 2012 by oldonpalouse
Equating her armpit with Women's International Day says it all.

The Civilized World we live in.
15:34 March 13, 2012 by Svensksmith
Looks like the gal I had to dance with in gym class.
15:52 March 13, 2012 by Steggles
Big deal!

One of Sweden's most loved idols,'Agnetha'..... always had hairy armpits!
16:49 March 13, 2012 by gpafledthis
That DAMN SVT just gave the Finns ANOTHER good laugh !! Next week the norwegians might respond ?? Go to it swedes !! Make us SMUG !!

An American- AN AMERICAN (thank Odin)
17:00 March 13, 2012 by HYBRED
Glad to see it. I think a woman with hairy armpits is very sexy.
17:06 March 13, 2012 by DAVID T
hairy armpits = hairy bush
18:30 March 13, 2012 by Svensksmith
hairy bush = Willy Nelson
19:09 March 13, 2012 by Tanskalainen
@HYBRED You're supposed to stick it a little lower.
19:50 March 13, 2012 by libertarianism
The "problem" of women's underarm hair in the West is often traced back to 1915 when sleeveless and sheer-sleeved dresses were popular for US and UK women of status. An ad in "Harper's" featuring a bare-pitted lass told readers it was necessary for women to remove objectionable hair. Razors were soon marketed specifically to women, with adverts claiming underarm hair was unhygienic and unfeminine.… The legacy of advertising: convince people there's something wrong with them so you can sell them the solution.
20:44 March 13, 2012 by wbs
Interesting that Friden condemns the internet bullying of this woman by calling it "retarded". So it's not okay to mock women with hairy pits but okay to use a derogatory term for mentally handicapped? Good to know.
00:53 March 14, 2012 by diegoveggie
most men shave everyday, so who cares? hairy armpits are gross anyways
06:56 March 14, 2012 by Decedo
eww....dirty hippys
09:13 March 14, 2012 by J Jack
Better a smiling hippy than a boring PC woman with a shaved cave.
12:07 March 15, 2012 by psnack
After Sweden becomes a moslem country, she will wear a burqa and can have armpit hair, missing teeth and multiple chins, and no one will care.
15:31 March 16, 2012 by jomamas
The real problem is this:

'They are trying to bully. They say it is ugly'.

NO. MOST PEOPLE FIND IT GROSS. THEY ARE NOT TRYING TO BULLY YOU.

THEY JUST FIND IT GROSS.

I find it gross. I don't hate women. Reasonable people can grasp that there is no contradiction in that statement.

In the new 'PETA-like' feminism - people have lost their minds.
19:18 March 16, 2012 by tadchem
body hair = testosterone = libido

We evolved from primates. Deal with it.
19:53 March 16, 2012 by Playethic
Baffling that underarm hair grows naturally on both men and women, and women must pretend it is not there, must remove it, else be considered 'gross', yet the same natural feature on men is not?
02:09 March 18, 2012 by Exolon
I have to wonder about the people who react so strongly to armpit hair, or even bush, both of which are natural in adult women.

It seems a lot of people have an obsession with pre-pubescent women, who do not have hair in these areas. Closet paedophiles, perhaps?
01:59 March 19, 2012 by Liandra Dahl
Under arm hair is beautiful. I particularly love the http://hairypitsclub.tumblr.com/ blog of women celebrating their under arm hair.
10:57 March 20, 2012 by stevo1
hey ladies, do what you want, but when you cant attract a guy or keep one, you'll know the answer, it wasn't him, it was your stinky, embarrassing armpit hair.

The Feminists will deny this as a valid reason, but in actual fact, it is the truth, so make sure you take ownership fully while growing your armpit hair!
17:59 March 25, 2012 by Adam_H
It is gross and you need to remove it.

Deal with it, feminists.
19:11 March 29, 2012 by Sulizhen
Even though I wax almost every inch of my body (it's my choice; being dark-haired comes with a price), I can't see the problem. So what if she has a hairy armpit? I can't believe that people had made such a fuss out of this...
Today's headlines
Dad jailed for assaulting his infant twin sons
Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Dad jailed for assaulting his infant twin sons

A man in central Sweden was sentenced to prison for aggravated assault on Friday after doctors noticed that both his twin sons had sustained serious and unexplained injuries. READ  

Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial
Clocking in. File photo: Shutterstock

Swedish city all set for six-hour workday trial

Officials finalized plans on Friday for the "Gothenburg guinea pigs" who will test out the six-hour workday, a move it's hoped will cut down on sick leave, boost efficiency, and ultimately save Sweden money. READ  

Armed royal guards caught drunk on the job
Photo: Gunnar Lundmark/TT

Armed royal guards caught drunk on the job

Three Swedish soldiers risk prison after they were found to be drunk while guarding Stockholm's Royal Palace. The men, who were all armed at the time, were charged on Friday. READ  

Stockholm
What do the Swedes do when summer's over?
Photo: Isabela Vrba

What do the Swedes do when summer's over?

The heatwave is well and truly over, the days are getting shorter, and winter is coming. With this in mind, The Local's Isabela Vrba chatted to ten Stockholmers about how they plan to tackle the autumn. READ  

Swedes spend fortune on nail polish trend
Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

Swedes spend fortune on nail polish trend

Swedes are spending more than ever on makeup - and a growing chunk is going directly to their fingernails, new figures showed on Friday. READ  

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops
The pharmacy section of a grocery store. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops

After a drastic increase in the number of paracetamol poisonings in Sweden, authorities have said the drug should only be available in pharmacies. READ  

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden
File photo: Andreas Hagerman/Flickr

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden

After finding traces of listeria in ham sold in Sweden, food companies decided on Friday to recall several Danish cold cuts. READ  

Sweden Floods
More rain expected as floods hit day four
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

More rain expected as floods hit day four

UPDATED: Sweden's floods showed no signs of abating over Thursday night, with highways closed, emergency teams working overtime, and more rain on the way. READ  

Ikea opens first store in the Balkans
An Ikea city centre store in Hamburg. Photo: TT

Ikea opens first store in the Balkans

Swedish furniture giant Ikea has opened its first store in the former Yugoslavia, near Croatia's capital Zagreb. The move marks the company's first step in an expansion to the Balkans market. READ  

Elections 2014
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Jimmie Åkesson. Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'

With national elections around the corner, political scientist Stig-Björn Ljunggren says there's a hive of activity behind the scenes, and that the right-wing nationalist party could end up being the key player. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Politics
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Society
Swedes celebrate first day of smelly fish season
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching August 20th
Society
Did you know the Bronx in NYC was named after a Swede?
Blog updates

17 August

Sea Fever (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I’m going to keep this post short and sweet as its not something I take any pleasure in writing. After much deliberation I have made the heartbreaking decision to abandon my trip after 1200km due to reoccurring injury. It is not a decision I have made lightly and it is one that has been truly devastating..." READ »

 

17 August

St. Louis strong (Blogweiser) »

"It’s typically a bad sign when my hometown makes news in Sweden. St. Louis was in the headlines here a few years ago when a tornado struck the airport. The city also caught attention after a politician talked about ‘legitimate rape’. Now, shooting and riots this week in Ferguson, a part of St. Louis, are..." READ »

 
 
 
Politics
"Iraq reminds me of the Yugoslav wars. It's the same story."
Society
Swedes slam Danes for 'racist' art
National
Majority of Swedes favour more or just as many refugees
Society
Lock your bathrooms: Swedish toilet invader on the the loose
Politics
'Assange will not leave until safe'
Gallery
See more images from the southern Sweden floods
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Society
Serial chicken smuggler caught at Norway border. Again.
Society
This gold coin may be the key to solving a Swedish massacre
Shutterstock
Lifestyle
The Swedish mentor (and why you may need one)
Politics
Reinfeldt calls for tolerance to refugees
Gallery
People-watching August 16-17
National
Sweden celebrates 200 years of peace
Society
Top ten literal Swedish words
Politics
'Terror training should be illegal': Liberal Party
Gallery
Swedes talk about 200 years of national peace
Politics
Islamic extremist shakes Sweden with TV threat
National
Teacher fined for 'Hitler salute' in German class
Features
Kiruna residents talk life in a town on the move
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

714
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se