Sex and the University: The hair down there
Published: Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, October 9, 2012 23:10
Pubic hair, though it seems largely irrelevant in the grand scheme of things, is a hot issue in the bedroom. Although being unshaven does not seem as if it would put a damper on the sexual experience, the boys I questioned said otherwise. “It’s gross,” said the first male student that I asked. “Like, maybe if she’s a ten out of ten it’d be different. But maybe not even then. Girls have a code to uphold.”
The “code,” apparently, is maintaining a relatively hairless body from the neck down. There is a belief that girls who do not shave are somehow “dirty,” and that it retracts from their femininity. A full bush is deemed repulsive, while even stubble makes the men shudder. Another male student grimaced and retorted, “Not even if she’s hot, man! It’s gross. I want it completely shaven.” This statement was agreed upon by other male students, although a female student commented that she would prefer men to have pubic hair because it seemed “more natural than just having it waving there without anything to cover it.”
The double standard regarding pubic hair maintenance is absurd; if it is deemed acceptable for men to have their pubic hair any way they want it, then why are women being pressured to be bare underneath their clothes?
One possible answer is the images of women that men are confronted with before their real-life sexual experiences. In pornography, the women are often clean-shaven, or have a miniscule amount (called a ‘landing strip’ or a ‘the Brazilian,’ both of which consist of a thin strip of hair). Even in sex scenes in films, the woman is completely shaven, which gives men the illusion that the women they encounter in real life also uphold the same hair maintenance. It creates anxiety for girls, who feel as if they will be less desirable for having a full bush, or for having any amount of pubic hair at all.
Another female student that I spoke to mentioned that her boyfriend was not fond of “downtown hair,” but that, in the heat of the moment, he was less inclined to care. Most men, I figured, would not be concerned due to the sexual experience, which I don’t believe decreases or increases with the amount of body hair a woman has. However, the boys all concurred that it was necessary for women to be bare without citing any reasons other than “that’s just the way it should be.”
It seems to me that men are unaware of the complications that can come with constantly shaving your pubic area, which can consist of (but aren’t limited to): itchiness, redness, ingrown hairs and mild pain. Shaving every day is uncomfortable for women, and no girl provides constant maintenance, regardless of what men think is pleasing to the eye.
Food for thought: a totally shaved vagina is known as “the Lolita,” after the titular character from Vladimir Nabokov’s famous novel. Lolita is considered alluring in the book because of her prepubescent state. Just think about that.