Former 'Bachelor' star didn't shave legs for red carpet — why it's a 'big deal'

"I grew up HATING the hair on my body," Bekah Martinez wrote on Instagram.

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/ Source: TODAY
By Alyssa Newcomb

Former "Bachelor" star Bekah Martinez recently hit the red carpet without shaving her legs and decided to share the photo on her Instagram account to spread a message of self-love.

"This may sound really dumb, but it was a big deal for me. I’ve finally gotten to the point where I feel (almost) totally comfortable like this," said Martinez, who gave birth to a daughter, Ruth, earlier this year.

Martinez wrote that she stopped shaving her legs and armpits nearly one year ago, a big step after feeling ashamed of her body hair from a young age.

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"I grew up HATING the hair on my body. I was teased for it, snuck my mom’s razor at age 9, and would pray that God would remove my hair from the neck down. I would panic every time I got invited to go swimming and hadn’t shaved," she wrote.

That all changed, she wrote, when she got pregnant and decided to work to "overcome this insecurity."

"It’s not about 'not believing in shaving', it’s about believing I AM BEAUTIFUL, ATTRACTIVE AND 'FEMININE' NO MATTER WHERE I HAVE HAIR ON MY BODY. It’s about showing girls you don’t have to listen when society tells you your natural features are ugly or gross," she wrote. "It has taken months to get used to it. The horrible online comments don’t help. But I’m getting there."

Martinez has used her Instagram account in the past to defend mom bods, combat body-shamers and empower people to feel beautiful, no matter their size or societal beauty standards.

"Remember, if someone has a problem with the way you look, that’s an issue with THEIR mentality, not YOUR body," she added.