Women in Kazakhstan are protesting a soon-to-be enforced ban on lace underwear in the country. Yup, lace underwear. If you’re wondering why anyone, including a government, would ban lace underwear (much of which is made from synthetic fabrics), it’s apparently got something to do with moisture. The Moscow Times reports:
The law, which went into effect in the Customs Union in 2012 but not yet enforced, will ban underwear that does not reach a 6 percent threshold for moisture absorption, which aims to prevent products potentially harmful to consumers. Moisture absorption in many of the most popular synthetic material mixtures for lace panties is reportedly around 3 to 3.6 percent.
So, it’s all about making ladies’ ladyparts less wet and swampy? That seems…extreme. The proposed ban is supposed to go into effect this July and it’s proving quite controversial. Women protested in Kazakhstan’s largest city of Almaty over the weekend, some wearing synthetic lace panties on their heads.
So far only two young women arrested for lacy panties pic.twitter.com/C3kjmqHDdM
— Dina Baidildayeva (@baidildayeva) February 16, 2014
Now, I don’t know much about Kazakhstan or their government. I don’t presume to know anything about the presumably complicated economic reasons for the customs agreement between Kazakhstan, Belarus and Russia, of which this ban is a part. And I’m not trying to be all xenophobic and “OMG other countries have crazy limiting laws god bless America where I can smother my vagina in Lycra cause at least I know I’m free.” What works in Kazakhstan works in Kazakhstan. But it seems kind of strange that Kazakhstan would care so much about the moisture level in the panties of their female citizens, especially since there are more than a few women who are speaking out against the panty ban.
I understand making laws about the levels of mercury or chemicals in food or personal care products, laws that are designed to protect consumers, but I don’t understand this one. Is it so dire and so important that women’s underwear be absorbent? I will say that I usually don’t wear lace underwear because of this very reason, though. It doesn’t absorb enough moisture and makes me feel itchy and uncomfortable.
Still, I think that women (Or men! Or people who identify at other points along the gender spectrum!) should be able to wear lace and/or synthetic underwear. I mean, wear them at your own risk or whatever, but wear ’em if you want to.