Sieccan Newsletter

Riddell, Lenore; Varto, Hannah; Hodgson, Zoë G.
October 2010
Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality;2010, Vol. 19 Issue 3, p121
Academic Journal
This exploratory, descriptive study investigated the motivations and practices behind the phenomenon of pubic hair removal among women. A final sample of 660 women aged 16 - 50 years who had ever removed their pubic hair completed surveys asking about their reasons for, methods of, and side effects associated with this practice. Based on their usual practices for areas of hair removal, bikini line was reported by about 50% of participants and whole pubic area by about 30%. Shaving, salon waxing, and trimming with scissors were the most common usual methods although many more reported having ever tried more than one of these or other methods. Appearance in a bathing suit was the most common reason given for pubic hair removal followed by feeling attractive and by the notion that pubic hair removal is cleaner. Side effects ever experienced were common and included razor bump and ingrown hairs but also rash, pimples, and cuts among other less common types of pubic skin traumatization. Further research is proposed to better understand the social constructs of pubic hair removal and to develop best practice guidelines for health professionals in relation to this phenomenon.


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