Whatever you call it, these are the names for our most feminine appendage and just as we have been getting breast implants or breast reductions to have the "perfect" breast, it seems now we have shifted our focus to having the perfect labia.
Labiaplasty is the fastest growing plastic surgery in the UK and possibly the USA as well. We are now paying to have someone slice into our labia to reshape them into what we deem "perfect".
Jamie McCartney's Great Wall of Vagina
Our body insecurity seems to know no bounds. We are no longer content with wanting to shift a few pounds to fit into some socially prescribed ideal body size, or getting breast implants to have the right size breasts, now it seems we have started to worry about the size of our labia too, a part of our body that very few people even see.
So who are we comparing ourselves too? Women don't go around showing each other their vulva's and we don't get to see them when undressing after sports the way men see each others penises. So how are we getting the idea that our lady parts are somehow not right?
With the advent of the Internet, pornography is more readily available than it has ever been and so we are now comparing ourselves to women on those sites.
The rise in Brazilian waxing has also had the lady parts out on display in ways it has never been before. All that this does is make us look more like a prepubescent girl.
Our vagina's and labia change as we age and after we have children but with the hair removal and labiaplasty we are trying desperately to hold onto your youth. But just how young do we want to make ourselves look? And why?
The one ( and only!) time I ever shaved my pubic hair I was horrified that I no longer looked like a woman but instead looked like I did at 13. I didn't feel womanly or sexy. I felt immature and girlish. I have spoken to some women who regularly get waxed and they tell me it makes them feel "clean" and I can't help thinking this somehow means "virginal".
If we are to embrace our true womanliness and to feel like strong, empowered, sexual beings then, in my mind, we need to start by loving all of our bodies, loving our hairy underarms, legs and vulva's. We have to stop buying into the religious and tribal beliefs that somehow women are unclean and that sex is dirty. We have to stop believing that we smell.
Western women have the luxury of choice in so many matters; how we dress, who we marry, whether we work or not, how many children we have, the list goes on and on. Genital mutilation is a very real and very present threat for women in many cultures and many countries. Lets not choose to mutilate our own genitals for the sake of some idea of beauty.
Most men, when asked, would not discriminate against having sex with a woman just because of her labia. In fact if they have got this up close and personal with you, chances are they are just grateful to be having sex with a gorgeous woman. If he didn't think you were a beautiful,amazing woman you wouldn't have got this far. If he is so crass as to comment on the size and shape of your labia or suggest that you wax then you have just discovered some valuable information about him. He is in fact a douche and you can save yourself a lot of heartache by never seeing him again and waiting instead for a real man to come along.
Real men love you for WHO you are not WHAT you look like. Strong , sexy, empowered sex goddesses know this and attract just such men.