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To dye for: Coloured body hair among grooming trends

Celebrities touting coloured body hair as celebration of self expression

While Ginnifer Goodwin and Kelly Ripa both recently unveiled boldly dyed locks, other women are broadening the boundaries of self-expression with colourfully tinted hair above and below the belt.

"Once Upon A Time'' star Goodwin showcased her grey pixie cut at Comic-Con International in San Diego, while talk show host Ripa revealed her bright blue bob on Instagram. But there are a rainbow's worth of options for those seeking a less visible hair colour experiment.

Wax Hair Removal Bar offers bikini tints in hues like pink, green, red and orange. Keeping in step with the "something borrowed'' bridal tradition, blue is a popular option during wedding season, noted founder Luba Sasowski.

Sasowski said tinting is favoured by older clients not opting for full Brazillian waxes who are seeking grey coverage. They've also sold many take-home products to bachelorette parties for women wanting to test out different shades.

She said 40 per cent of their clientele are men, and many are opting for lash tinting.

"We're the official salon to Chippendales and we have a lot of the guys that come in because it just makes their eyes pop,'' she said.

"Honestly, it just really makes your eyes pop. It coats your eyelashes to make it more intensive without using makeup.''

The company also offers a pair of sparkling post-wax options: the application of Swarovski crystals down below with ''Bling Your Thing,"or the waterproof tattoo ''Glitter Your Thing`` which lasts up to a week.

"People are looking for fun ways to spice things up or even feel better about themselves,'' said Sasowski, whose company has locations in Vancouver, Burnaby, B.C., Las Vegas and Henderson, Nev.

Some women are ditching their razors and eschewing waxing to let their body hair flow freely.

Pop star Miley Cyrus has proudly flaunted her coloured armpits on social media. Cyrus and "Girls'' star Jemima Kirke have also made headlines for flashing hairy underarms at red carpet events.

As leader of the Free Your Pits movement, Roxie Hunt has become a vocal advocate for women to be empowered in their grooming choices, and to not feel pressured to adhere to particular beauty standards _ regardless of whether or not they shave.

Having become tired of shaving – a process she admits she never liked – Hunt said she decided five years ago to grow out her underarm hair after having kids.

Hunt has not only embraced her growth, but has coloured her own pits pink. The hair colourist does the same for the underarms of clients at Seattle-based salon Vain, which charges US$65 for the service.

"We don't have to fit into this box. And in fact, we need to challenge these things,'' said Hunt, DIY hair and style blogger at How-to Hair Girl.

"In so many ways as women it keeps us down to think that we need to look a certain way or be or act a certain way. There's not a lot in our society that honours our individual unique traits.

"So for me, freedom is about grabbing onto those things and expressing them and having fun with them and not worrying about judgment from others.''

New York-based beauty historian Rachel Weingarten said for nearly every generation of women, beauty trends have evolved in part as a form of rebellion _ and coloured body hair is no different.

"What seems so outrageous to us ... 'Oh my gosh, she has aqua underarm hair,' you have to understand that in the '70s someone having long hair and no makeup was as shocking and rebellious. It's our historical perspective that makes things just as interesting as they are,'' said Weingarten, author of ``Hello Gorgeous! Beauty Products in America '40s-'60s.''

"If you look at the uptight Betty Draper-type who's then evolving into the hippie type, that was shocking for that generation,'' added Weingarten, a former celebrity makeup artist.

"As our trends and acceptance evolve, so does the rebellion – and so do the statements.''

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