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Why Getting Rid Of Your Pubic Hair Is Overrated

Shaving down under is more work than it's worth.

Photo Credit: Sergi Lopez Roig /


Things that make me want to laugh and cry, sometimes simultaneously, number in the hundreds, including remarks like this: “Did prehistoric women shave their pubic hair? We'll never know, but you can be sure some prehistoric males were urging them to do so.” This is from  BeaverShaver, which sells exactly what you think it would—devices for removing pubic hair.

Hmm… I’m not sure about prehistoric males idealizing shaven pubic areas, but we are apparently drowning in the newest wave of an old aesthetic concern.

I’m sure I know what all the pube-groomers among you are screaming. “Pubic hair is nasty!”

Is it?

Yes, yes. I’ve been to the water park too, and have been a little disgusted by the overly furry human form, stray pubes extending like the legs of a spider (or dozens of them) out from under the elastic of a bathing suit. But that’s a visual concern, not a health concern. And let’s be clear about this: removing your pubic hair does not make you healthier. There is no real reason (at least that I’ve read) that your pubic hair should be there, making a perfectly groomed nether region more of a visual preference than anything else. But not too long ago, pubes were plentiful.

In old issues of  Playboy, you’ll find forests of pubic hair, bushes you could braid. But as restrictions on nudity relaxed and full frontal nudity began to be regularly featured among the magazine's glossy pages, removing pubic hair really started catching on. Years later, fictional characters like Carrie Bradshaw of  Sex and the City and famous vixens like Victoria Beckham and Kim Kardashian started singing the praises of going bald. And not just bald. These girls are removing pubic hair with wax—a full "Brazilian wax," which rips hair out by its follicles from the most sensitive area of their bodies. Why? Oh, lord, why?

“There was a bit of a story that it was a nice and decent thing to do for your partner, for both men and women,” Virginia Braun, a researcher at New Zealand’s University of Auckland told  Metro magazine. “This idea that getting a mouthful of pubes is unpleasant.”

No one is going to argue that it’s an unsettling sensation, a mouth of pubes. But, come on, is it really the hair that’s so gross… really?

Think about it. When you grunt in disgust over your dog or cat licking their bums, it’s not, “Oh my god, I can’t believe they’re licking the hair around those holes.” It’s, “Oh my god, I can’t believe they’re licking those holes.” You know what comes out of them. To make your dog or cat cleaner, you’d clean the hole—not shave them.

And this is part of what can make sex gross—full stop. It's not the hair. It's the holes. What goes in and out of the holes the rest of the day. All those fluids. All that sweat. Don’t forget  how truly un-sexy we look while engaged in sex. The ridiculous faces, the noises, the fact that when you orgasm you look like you may be having a seizure, aneurism or stroke, one eye twisted up, a drop of drool teetering on your hanging lip. And while we’ll go ahead and take the organ and its fluid into our mouths—pubic hair is the thing that makes it gross? Those holes are gross. We’re okay with licking the holes, but damn that hair?

This evident misplacement of disgust on the poor pubic hair is just the first thread that unravels in this hairless trend. An article that appeared in the Atlantic in 2011 reported, “Full pubic hair removal… is most common among sexually active women, and specifically women who report having frequent oral sex and women who are not in monogamous relationships.”

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