Pubic Hair Grooming Injuries Have Increased Fivefold

Illustration for article titled Pubic Hair Grooming Injuries Have Increased Fivefold

In our time, uncertainty over What Should Be Done With Our Pubes has launched one thousand feminist think pieces (and, recently, a fleet of attention-seeking merkins to an American Apparel near you). In theory, I think the aestheticization of the hairless female body is interesting and quite telling. In practice, though, I can't think of anything less relevant to my life than what other people decide to do with their crotch hair. As a rule, I don't care. Do whatever you want — if you shave it into eyebrow shapes, I might maybe want to see that, but otherwise, nope. However, The New Republic has recently unearthed some findings about home-grooming injuries that bring a whole new element into consideration: the element of danger.

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According to a 2012 paper in the journal Urology, the number of pubic hair grooming injuries increased fivefold between 2002 and 2010. Please note that the paper only tracked injuries that ended up in the E.R. — so, not little nicks or scrapes. EMERGENCY ROOM-LEVEL INJURIES. Other fun facts: shaving razors were implicated in 83% of injuries, and the most at-risk group is women aged 19 to 28. Laceration was the most common type of injury, accounting for 36.6% of all incidents, followed by rash, abrasion, and burn.

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Here's a graph of age and gender disparities in pube-related woundings:

Illustration for article titled Pubic Hair Grooming Injuries Have Increased Fivefold

Graph via nchbi.nlm.nih.gov.

Interestingly, it's something that afflicts more women under the age of 28 and more men above. Why? I don't know. Maybe it will remain a mystery forever.

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In better news, only 1% of people were actually admitted to the E.R. for treatment. Encouragingly (?), the study notes that "no deaths were identified." Moral of the story: do whatever you want, but be careful. Your body is a temple. Always wear a helmet.

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Image via Jiri Hera/Shutterstock.

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DISCUSSION

Tom-Cruise-Is-Weird
Tom.Cruise.Is.Weird

I wouldn't say I've been part of the accident crowd so much as the extreme mortification crowd on this. The first incident was when I lived overseas at 16 and wanted to wax my bikini line because duh, anyone can do it - and themselves! So off I marched after school to the local pharmacy which sold beauty products also, and I picked up some cheap green waxing goo in a can plus some wooden tongue depressors and linen strips, which was what the nice lady gave me. I happy skipped home to Natalie Imbruglias "Torn" on my clip on mini radio, and went to work in our guest bathroom. Microwave the goo, check, make sure it's not too hot, check. As I was reading the instructions, I spread the goo, and boy, was I not shy about the amount. Half my crotch was green! But this was normal, right? The more goo the easier and faster it must come off! But wait. Press tongue depressor on the linen strip over the goo. Ok, pressed. Oh shit. I forgot the linen strip. Hmmm, the stick is stuck and is not coming off. Ummm, where is there a warning on these instructions for in case YOU FORGET TO PUT THE STRIP ON?? My other finger touched the other side of the crotch goo which was the size of fucking Australia and my pinky got stuck, so I was horrified when I yanked it off, and felt the pain spread like wildfire down my legs. Pants down, tank top on, I peeked outside of the door to see if anyone was home so I could make a mad dash to my Mom's bathroom, with a cake-layer of green wax on my mons with a giant wooden tongue depressor stuck to it. I had to get to the scissors. It took me 3 hours to cut that shit out and I don't think I threw the whole kit away fast enough. Number 2 in mortifying crotch stories will be short. I wanted to impress my boyfriend of 22 when I was 18 so I thought to shave the initial of his last name on the front, which was "Z". Imagine my surprise when he ended up crying laughing and falling off the bed as I glared at him in utter disbelief. I had created a work of art for him! How dare he! Until he told me it was backwards.