STOCKHOLM, Oct 7 — A Swedish model says she has received rape threats after posing for an advert with unshaved legs.
Arvida Byström appears in a video and photographs promoting Adidas Originals’ Superstar range.
She received dozens of abusive messages after the advert was released on YouTube at the end of September.
In an Instagram post, she wrote that she was threatened with rape in direct messages on social media.
“Me being such an abled, white, cis body with its only nonconforming feature being a lil leg hair. Literally I’ve been getting rape threats in my DM inbox,” the 26-year-old wrote.
“I can’t even begin to imagine what it’s like to not possess all these privileges and try to exist in the world. Sending love and try to remember that not everybody has the same experiences being a person.”
As well as being a model, Arvida is a photographer and digital artist and is well known for posing with her body hair on show.
Adidas described her as someone who “questions femininity and gender standards using so-called ‘girly’ aesthetics”.
In the Adidas video, Byström says: “I think femininity is usually created from our culture so I think everybody can do feminine things, can be feminine. I feel like in today’s society we are very scared of that.”
But for every troll bombarding both Adidas and Byström’s social media pages are words of support from women thanking them for supporting “a girl who is against traditional beauty standards.”
Watch the clip that has ignited a firestorm below: