Any discerning style aficionado will tell you that here are certain things that should remain firmly relegated to the past; avocado bathroom suites, polyester pants, pebble dash and… hirsute bikini lines. (Or so we thought…) Thanks to A-Listers such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Cameron Diaz extolling the virtues of letting your lady garden grow, there seems to be somewhat of a retro revival afoot.
Chloe Scriminger, head trainer at Ministry Of Waxing agrees; “We’re certainly seeing an increase in ladies opting for our XX Extra wax (which tidies up the bikni area whilst leaving a natural look) following the celebrity trend for going au naturel down south.” Speaking of those bush-championing celebs, Cam has been very emphatic in urging women to embrace the natural look (she devoted a whole chapter - ‘In Praise Of Pubes’ - of her book to it.) She focuses on laser hair removal in particular posing the question about whether we really want to be flashing the flesh when we’re old and wrinkly?
Her argument, (and we're inclined to agree) is that whilst fads come and go, once zapped, hair doesn't and like the rest of our body, our bits are not immune to the effects of gravity.
But aethetics aside, there is of course a more science-y argument for keeping hair ‘down there’ as Dr Vanessa Mackay from the Royal College of Obstretricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) explains; “Pubic hair offers a natural barrier to keep things clean, to decrease contact with viruses and bacteria, and to protect the tender skin of the area.
While protecting against diseases and skin problems, public hair prevents foreign particles like dust and pathogenic bacteria from entering the body. By shaving you’re putting yourself at higher risk of contracting genital warts as although public hair doesn’t completely prevent it, it helps avoid skin on skin contact.
Pubic hair also helps to control the moisture of the area which decreases the chances of yeast infections.” If that wasn’t enough to have you throwing out your BIC she goes on to argue that shaving and waxing in themselves aren’t great for your ‘delicate flower’ (Ms Diaz’s words not ours!) “Removing pubic hair also irritates and inflames the hair follicles left behind, leaving microscopic open wounds. When that irritation is combined with the warm moist environment of the genitals, it becomes a happy culture medium for bacterial pathogens.”
Seventies swimwear hair we come!
Your Carpet Kit
We may have been swayed about going back to nature but that doesn’t mean we want to go full-on Grey Gardens. Keep your lady garden neatly pruned with this nifty cordless trimmer that works on wet and dry skin and stays charged for 60 minutes.
Ingrown hairs are hairs that have curled around and grown back into the skin trapping them beneath the surface and producing a raised red bump or boil-like sore as the body responds to them as a foreign object. If you’re in the annoying re-growth stage, treat pesky (and painful!) ingrown hairs by opting for a product that contains skin-sloughing salicylic and glycolic acids such as this one from Malin & Goetz (don’t be tempted to pick which can cause scarring).
The combination of these gently exfoliating acids removes any dead skin cells that may be blocking the hair follicles whilst soothing ingredients such as chamomile and Aloe Vera calms inflammation.
Yes there really is such a thing! Why should the boys have all the fun with their beard oils when hair down there needs some TLC too? Make way in your bathroom cabinet for this follicle fortifying hero. Containing all-natural ingredients including anti-inflammatory primrose oil to soothe irritated skin, antiseptic frankincense oil to keep the area clean and healthy and sunflower seed and apricot kernel oils to nourish hair from root to tip, it’s all you need for a good hair day.
The reason many women worry about letting things 'go with the flow' when it comes to their bikini lines is due to perceived hygiene issues. Whilst Dr Mackay should have allayed any of these fears with her argument that pubic hair is actually healthier, for those still concerned about ‘freshness’ make sure you choose products specifically designed to respect this unique part of your anatomy. Femfresh’s Everyday Care Daily Gel Wash for example is pH balanced and formulated to care for intimate skin as this is the one area where soap and water simply won’t do.
Why? It’s back to biology class girls. Did you know for example that your vagina contains more (good) bacteria than anywhere else in the body after the bowel? And to stay healthy 'down there' we want to keep it that way. The vagina also has a lower (more acidic) pH than anywhere else in the body to help keep the balance of these bacteria in check. Disrupt the pH (by washing with perfumed soaps etc) and this delicate balance is thrown out of whack leaving other bacteria that can cause infections such as bacterial vaginosis to multiply.
Worried about increased sweating? Sporty girls should opt for Femfresh’s Everyday Care Re-balance Powder, £3.49, which offers gentle, talc-free comfort.
Unpruned needn’t mean unglamorous if these hair dye kits are anything to go by. Whether you’re wanting to cover grey (finding a grey down here is somehow so much more traumatizing than noticing them on your head) or are looking for an out and out party in your pants (hot pink anyone?) this will have you covered.
Obviously there are concerns about using any type of chemical in this intimate area but Betty’s assure that they only use natural ingredients that don’t contain parabens or ammonia with the black/brown/auburn colours containing less PPD than other dyes on the market. (We’d still advise taking care when showering off to avoid the dye coming into contact with delicate skin).