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Cover image: Billie
Words by Casey Vassallo.
The rhetoric in entertainment (albeit movies, magazines and porn) has long been to – at the very least – groom the nether regions. Whether you’ve had a Sex and the City, Samantha Jones-inspired lightning bolt, been waxed raw into a smooth Brazilian, or lasered a long-term landscape, our pubic hair is not something many of us have left to the Gods.
In 2020, we shave, wax, laser, cream and groom it, or let it run wild. Perhaps one might put down the array of hairy preferences to that of social media’s people power, and the rise of female-made entertainment showing there’s more choice than what we’ve seen fashioned on actresses, models and role-playing sexperts.
Most of us would have had a moment (or several) in our lives when we took a stance on pubic hair; whether that be to keep it, get rid of it, style it or argue for it.
Dolly Doctor was my first introduction to learning about 'down there', in more ways than one. But it wasn’t until things started to escalate with my first seriousboyfriend that I became aware of my options when it came to pubic hair. If memory serves me right, I recall a pivotal moment when he asked – rhetorically – ‘You don’t shave?’. I promptly dealt with it.
For me, it was after seeing Emma Watson reveal her love for Fur Oil on Into The Gloss amid Lena Dunham’s let-it-all-out direction for Girls that I realised there was a choice even to keep it. In an interview with Vogue, Paz Stark of Stark Waxing Studio in the US likened the bush renaissance to “the rise of thicker eyebrows.” Maybe going au naturel is ‘in’ because it’s a trend in itself?
Trends aside, what are the health facts?
The pros for keeping your pubic hair
General health, and even nature. What is part of our body tends to have a role to play. We have eyelashes to protect our eyes, and the same goes for your bushy cushion. Pubic hair protects against bacteria, viruses, rash and infection. There’s also the fact it can heighten sexual stimulation.
The cons for removing your pubic hair
Then there are the risks from inflicting hair removal: infection, ingrown hair, hyper-pigmentation and cuts, which can also be associated with a higher chance of contracting STDs (as some studies allude to). Bad hygiene during the act of hair removal also opens another can of worms (a topic for another day!).
And the reasons for ditching it
It boils down to one thing: preference. Your preferential reasoning could come down to feelingclean, sex-appeal, aesthetics or even your partner’s taste. Point is, it's really up to you - your body, your hair, your choice. (Though there’s also some talk of it removing the potential accommodation for pubic lice).
TLDR: At the end of the day, for the love of your pubic hair, it’s your choice if you want to remove any or all of it. But if you do, do it safely and be aware of the associated health risks (which can occur if you don’t remove it properly and maintain good intimate hygiene in general). When in doubt, ask you GP or gynaecologist for the best option for you.
About the writer
Casey Vassallo is a writer, among other things. Not wanting to be pigeonholed, she works across several genres in the media world, covering everything from restaurant openings, to how women spend their money, and the facts about intimate hygiene for Moxie.
(And in case you’re wondering, she also has a BA, double majoring in professional writing and creative writing - Girl's Got Moxie!!).