Hairstyles go in and out of fashion, upstairs and down, if you catch my drift. For most of my 30-something years, the sphinx cat (read: a bald pussy) look has remained en vogue. Sure, I’ve gone bare for periods of time, but never stuck with it for various, unimportant reasons. How I wear mine is my own personal pubic preference, just as everyone’s nethers should be. It’s not up for debate—it’s pubic property, not public property. This isn’t a new concept; we all know this. So why does the pubic hair shaming still exist?
Time for a related anecdote. I’ve never been much of a hooker-upper. Between my painfully low self-esteem and struggling to shed the sex-shame from my Christian upbringing, I’ve not often felt confident enough to seek some random strange. I was in my mid-twenties and out for some drinks with a friend one night, when one of her former coworkers showed up and joined us for a few drinks. He and I hit it off, and a few (many) drinks later, the vibes were clear. I summoned the courage to shake off my insecurities and bang the guy in the bathroom. It was fine. It was neither great nor terrible; it was sex in a bathroom. Once the deed was done, we ventured back to the bar and ordered another drink. That was when he leaned over and whispered in my ear, “you know, you really should shave down there.”
I was mortified. No, I wasn’t rocking a cue ball, but my shit was trimmed and tidy. I slammed back my drink, excused myself, and went home. The embarrassment and shame soon mixed with rage. How dare this asshole feel like he has the right to comment on how I choose to wear my pubes? How dare he comment on my body at all? His audacity to use my body for sex and then immediately shame it made me feel disgusting and worthless. I would love to tell you that I transformed that anger into vigor to never allow a partner to body-shame me again, but the truth is that it mostly just added to the deep-rooted insecurities I already felt over sex and my body.
Over the last few years, we’ve seen a blessed uptake on body hair acceptance and positivity. However, it both amuses and slightly infuriates me that pubic hair shaming still exists, especially within our own female community. I still hear women professing that they find pubic hair “gross”, or “unclean.” To those sisters who feel this way, I guess if you can’t keep your pubes clean, maybe it is best for you to remove them? Myself, a frequent partaker of showers, I have no issues keeping that zone clean, fuzz and all. But I don’t believe most of us actually think pubic hair is “gross”. Rather, we’ve been conditioned to see and communicate about it that way by partners, media, porn, etc. So, I ask my fellow havers-of-pubes, can we please stop using derogatory language towards our bushes? Wear it short, wear it long, wear none at all, but let’s stop referring to our pubic hair, something that naturally evolved on our human bodies, as “gross.” My bush isn’t gross. She isn’t unclean. And she’s finally confident enough to tell whoever thinks she owes them hairlessness to fuck off.