Mollie Hawkins
February 20, 2015 12:20 pm

It’s typical to see celebs on Instagram getting primped and fabulous pre-red-carpet events. It all looks the glammest — glowing make-up-free faces, and glitz and glamour before any of the accessories have even been applied. But we also know that’s not real. It’s curated and filtered and we never get the imperfect shots that might be a little more relatable. Until now.

Actress Thandie Newton just took the realness to a whole new level of awesome when she posted an Instagram selfie showing her pre-red-carpet routine: mid-lip-bleach. “Dealing with the tash in readiness for the Royal Premier tonight!” she wrote, thus bringing to light one of the feminine-care taboos we’re just not supposed to talk about: those pesky lip hairs.

With her casual Instagram post, Thandie opened up a discussion — why don’t we ever talk about this lady-care taboo? We’re human, and humans have hair; we’re not scientifically created to be smooth, plastic dolls and a lot of us spend both time and money on dealing with hair that sprouts up in unwanted places.

The harsh truth is there’s still a pressure for we ladies to always be on our physical A-game (see also: perfectly hair-free in all designated areas), and simultaneously to never talk about the steps we took to get there. If you think about it, that’s pretty silly. We spend so much time being our best selves, why not share our humanness with each other?

On Thandie’s site which she (wo)mans with make-up artist and friend Kay Montano, Kay wrote a blog inspired by Thandie’s selfie detailing her own ‘tache routine. She writes, “Neither of us are at Tom Selleck mouth-hedge levels but we do, like most women have a little non-blonde down (okay – alright – hair) above the upper lip. More surprising is that it’s clearly still a little taboo, otherwise it would not have gone as viral so quickly, with women high-fiving Thandie for her candour with the facial fuzz.” And it’s totally true! We seem to be ok with chatting about our bikini waxing regimens but for some reason that lip hair sitch is still kind of kept a secret. And it shouldn’t be! Stuff happens. We deal. 

Our Instagram feeds are so often filled with physical idealism that Newton’s real-talk quickly received both empathy and praise from her followers, with comments like “I’m not alone,” and “you’re so awesome!”

Here she is, post-tash-treatment at the premier for The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and she looks like a regal queen.

We’re applauding Thandie’s simple, yet powerful statement that tells the world it’s ok to break the feminine taboos. Rock your ‘tash bleach, praise your favorite shaving cream, give your lip threader a high-five, or don’t — au natural is gorgeous too. The point is, let’s get these taboos out in the open. There’s nothing on our bodies we should feel ashamed of.

[Images via, via]