To Brave the Bare or Rock a Bush
Merit Club guest blogger, Robyn Christine Waite, turns to that taboo topic of body hair in this week's post on braving or barring the bush.
DISCLAIMER: If you know me personally, but don’t want to know me that personally, do not read this!
For those of you reading on – you might know that I am not shy. In fact, I love a good dive into a topic that some of society might see as taboo. Today I want to talk about women’s private parts – more specifically, the act of trimming and pruning our lady gardens.
I was literally going to head to the salon today to get some “hollywood” treatment (pun intended), but then I read this article and got thinking. Why do I wax down nether, and, should I?
The article grabs your attention quickly, asking “how do you tell a gold medal winning cyclists she needs to stop getting bikini waxes”? Throughout the read you learn that leaving nature in it’s place and having a good old bush actually helps prevent saddle sores. How you might ask?
removing hair (i.e. shaving or waxing) typically damages the skin, making the area prone to further irritation and more at risk of infection
believe it or not a thick bustle of hair adds a layer of protection between your precious parts and the cycle saddle, and
hair helps with the wicking away and evaporation of sweat.
Given the above, and imagining the intense, sweaty, non-stop training lifestyle of a competitive female cyclist, it becomes pretty evident how hair removal might just cause more trouble than pleasure. But what about for all us moderately active or straight up couch potato women of the world?
Athlete or not, boxes get hot and sweaty! The groin area is packed with both apocrine and eccrine sweat glands. This means that we can get sweaty down there for pretty well any reason. I’m sweating my cooch off just writing this blog! Now, remember we said hair removal practices typically cause damage to the skin, increasing risk of infection? Well this includes STIs like herpes, warts, or HIV. Where nasty little viruses and bacteria have easy access to the body through skin lesions (these may be microscopic btw), risk of infection is always elevated. The list of potential health concerns associated with shaving and waxing go on. To me, this, + the pain of the process of getting a wax, provides sound reason for leaving my bush in place. So why do we young women go for the bare look anyways? We sure as hell aren’t doing it for ourselves (ok maybe a few of you truly are).
Thank you society! Yet another unhealthy way in which you have interfered with the perceptions of women and beauty. I can’t even begin to imagine what persuaded Playboy to move from bush to bare, but it sure has created a generation of young men that see the “bare” vagina as the “norm”. To be honest, I just don’t get what the “positives” association with this imagery of the ideal vagina are. Personally, the bare freaks me out. The image it generates in my mind, is youth, and I’m not so sure I can (or should) hold on to that title for ever (especially in the bedroom). Pubic hair is a natural part of womanhood. Heck it’s almost as if our bodies knew a bundle of hair down south would come in handy … and I’m sure it even tickles his pecker a little, adding to his pleasurable sensations, so really society, what is the big problem with hair down there?
This “modern” phenomena of hair removal definitely presents me with a dilemma. I write this blog, and have these questions, yet I am not sure if I will abandon the wax or not. Maybe I need some flower power support in my mission towards rocking a tamed bush. Any other young ladies with me?
If you enjoyed this post, why not take a look at other MC discussions about body hair, looking to activists such as Emer O'Toole in Body Hair: New Year New Rules and Gender Performed, A Conversation About Sex, Gender, Theatre and Politics
Words by MC Guest Blogger Robyn Waite
Avid writer and activist, with particular interests in social justice, political reform, and health and well-being, who is nearing the completion of her PhD in international development studies, and is currently working on entrepreneurial interests.