Your Bikini Wax May Be Bad for Your Health

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bikini bottomAHA! I knew it! I knew the War Against Pubic Hair would end badly. Turns out the totally bare trend is "increasing the risk of infection and of sexually transmitted diseases" among the fuzz-free masses who spend an estimated $2.1 billion battling the bush every year (that's in the U.S. alone!). And it doesn't really matter which method of hair removal you choose, either. According to Emily Gibson, M.D., whether you're waxing, shaving, plucking, using depilatory creams or whatever else, you're also inadvertently causing the hair follicles to become irritated and inflamed, "leaving microscopic open wounds." Which, because they are in a "warm, moist environment," quickly become prime breeding ground for "some of the nastiest bacterial pathogens."

Sexy, huh? And wait until you hear what some of those "bacterial pathogens" are. (Hint: Ain't no amount of vajazzling gonna distract from these yuckies!)

Apparently it's common for doctors to encounter hair removal-induced boils and abscesses on people's genitals, not to mention "cellulitis, an infection of the scrotum, labia, or penis from shaving or from having sex with someone infected." Plus, it's easier to spread/contract herpes when you got no hair down there.

GROSS! Gross, gross, and more gross. Are boils really preferable to pubes?!

I mean, look. I'm not gonna lie: I waste way more time, effort, and money than any sane person should attempting to conform to the current, um, style (for lack of a better word). But I spend an almost equal amount of time wondering why. Why am I doing this? Somewhere deep inside I know it can't be healthy, these regular assaults on my bikini line. Why do I cave in to the pube-hating pressure? As Dr. Gibson points out, “Pubic hair does have a purpose, providing a cushion against friction that can cause skin abrasion and injury, and protection from bacteria."

I'm totally down with the doc's idea to put an end to the hairless hysteria. But I don't know if I'm brave enough to pioneer the movement, truthfully.

So ... you first?

Do you think our obsession with hair removal is getting out of control?

 

Image via iamsuperkane/Flickr

general health, body image