Hair or Bare, Why Does He Care?

One of the common “sex fights” in marriages, is over pubic hair. Specifically, his desire for her to have little or none of the stuff.

Hair or Bare, Why Does He Care?

There are all kinds of issues here, including her comfort. But let’s bypass all that and get to the real problem for some women: she thinks he wants her to do this because he saw it in porn.

In reality, the removal of pubic hair predates pornography. The ancient Egyptians did it, using pumice stones or razors made of flint. Some Greeks of old also went bare, either pulling the hair out or burning it off.  (Ouch, ouch, ouch!) There are other examples through history. Because of the time involved, it was usually the upper class and/or women who provided sex who did this.

My point here is the idea of a bare vulva being sexy goes way, way back. I think part of it is being better able to see the vulva. But even more than that is the idea that a woman would do this for the man she loves. It’s taking time and energy for something he alone sees and enjoys. Every time he sees it, he is reminded she did it for him.

~ Paul – I’m XY, and I’m not telling!

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30 Comments on “Hair or Bare, Why Does He Care?

  1. Sometimes I wish body hair on women was seen as normal and not detracting from her sexiness. It would save so much time, money, and effort. On the other hand, if I could afford laser hair removal, I would zap it all.

    • @Libl, I agree! I have often wondered – who is the woman who started this whole leg shaving thing and why did she do that to us all? Imagine if we didn’t need to worry about it. That would be so great!

      • I think it started, really, out of exposure, wealth, and boredom. In cultures where women saw each other exposed (Egypt, Greco-Roman baths, harems, whore houses) there was naturally comparison. Some women are more hairy than others. Women are generally less hairy than men, so less hair=more feminine. Whereas more hair=more masculine. It also increased intrigue and novelty among men utilizing the services of their wives, concubines, or harlots. So, women with more hair probably wanted to appear more feminine like their more hairless peers.

        Other instances of removal, especially in Egypt, is that in decreased infestations of bugs. They shaved their heads, too, for similar reasons.

        As clothing for women pushed more boundaries, models had to provide a sleek slate upon which to feature said clothing. To have pubic hair sticking out was likely seen as distracting or too private. Consequently, in order for regular women to emulate such styles, be it shorts, swimwear, or lingerie, they, too had to shave up.

        I assume Playboy models eventually were shown more and more groomed because of personal preference for clothing, and frankly, men found it erotic. They could actually see the female anatomy better!

        If you go through the generations of men, the older they are the more pubic hair they prefer. The oldest set tend to say it is how a woman ought to be and otherwise looks childish. The middle set tend to prefer some hair, just trimmed back or a “landing strip” removed for oral sex. The younger set these days tend to prefer full baldness. The millenial set now tend to have both genders grooming bald.

        This all comes from a variety of reasons including our wealth (of time, money, and luxury of modern plumbing), media standards…and that includes the rampant pornography (which now seems to have put pubic hair into a fetish-style category), our casual sex culture, and our skimpy clothing and beach culture.

        There are those who do it simply for personal preference, as well, but there is a huge cultural pressure.

        • Ooh, yeah, I forgot about the whole pest control aspect of hair removal, good point! Thanks for bringing that up, Libl! Getting rid of pubic lice is pretty much the ONLY medical reason to completely remove the hair down below; otherwise it’s totally unnecessary for one’s health or sanitation. It’s generally more healthy/sanitary to leave it unshaved/unwaxed, in fact.

      • Oh, it wasn’t a woman, it was some guy in advertising. The razor companies needed a way to expand their customer base, so when the flappers of the 1920s made it fashionable for women to wear sleeveless dresses with shorter hemlines, they saw their opportunity and took it. Female body hair was then rebranded as being “unladylike,” “unhygienic,” and “unsightly.” *eyeroll* And the rest, as they say, is history.

        The good news is that it is possible to retrain one’s brain and eyes, to break away from the perception that female body hair as gross, and see it rather as something attractive and even sexy (or, at the very least, as inoffensive as male body hair). It takes time, and continued exposure to it, and an open mind, but it IS possible. People do this kind of thing all the time, like when clothing fashions change and one finds oneself liking a new trend that one had previously disliked, just because one starts seeing it everywhere. Same thing with body hair.

  2. I had to smile at this one because my preference is for full-length pubic hair while my wife prefers it trimmed down (not shaved). Truth be told, I find it sexy whether it’s full-length, trimmed, or shaved (she’s done this once).

  3. I got no problem with any of this as long as it’s the woman’s free choice, either to please herself or her husband (or both) and she isn’t being pressured into doing it against her will. But that’s a issue to discuss another day, that I will leave aside for now. Today, I’m focusing on health and safety.

    I’m going to preface this by saying that I have never done any pubic hair grooming in my life, so you all should know that I am not speaking from experience, but rather from what I have read over the years on the subject. OK, so with that out of the way, let’s dive in!

    Paul says in his post that “there are all kinds of issues here, including her comfort.” Which is true. One of the issues is that hair removal (specifically waxing but also shaving to a lesser extent) increases a person’s risk of getting infections (not just the sexually transmitted kind, which is bad enough, but ANY kind) down there. The reason for this is that when the hair is ripped out, the wax pulls on the skin so hard that it creates micro tears in the skin (yes, even with a skilled waxer, this happens), that can allow bacteria to enter.

    God didn’t give you pubic hair just so you could have something to painfully remove to “prove” how much love you have for husband. No, it serves several useful functions, which one should consider carefully before deciding to wax it all off. Such as:
    1. As I’ve already touched on, it’s there to help protect you from getting infections.
    2. It’s there to provide a cushion of sorts. There’s a lot of friction that goes on down below, not just during sex (obviously) but just during everyday activities. Walking/running causes friction, so does wearing pants, or riding a bike, and so on. The skin in that area is quite thin and delicate, with a lot of nerve endings, so it needs the hair to shield it from all that friction, otherwise it could become quite raw and irritated.
    3. Like armpit hair, it helps to regulate body temperature. It does this by wicking away sweat from the skin, thereby helping it to evaporate faster. I’ve also heard that it helps disperse pheromones in a similar manner, thereby increasing your husband’s sexual desire for you, so that’s something to consider as well. I personally take that with a grain of salt, as it is as yet unproven that humans even have pheromones like other animals, but I mention it here because many people do put a lot of stock in this idea and it’s not been disproven yet either.

    If you’ve taken all that into consideration, and you still want to do it, there are workarounds. To deal with the increased risk infection, keep be sure to keep the waxed area clean. Don’t have sex for a day or two afterwards (you’ll probably be too sore to anyway) to give the micro tears a chance to close up. Wear loose fitting clothes and underwear, preferable of a natural, breathable material. This will help keep you from sweating as much, which can increase your risk of infection AND cause more friction, which you don’t want on your already traumatized skin. There are other “hacks” to make all this easier, but this comment is long enough already so if you want more information on this you can do your own internet research.

    If you still want to do it (of your own free will!) you should now be able to with reasonable safety and minimal health risk. Have at it, you sexy beasts! :-P You know, if you want to. Or not. As you wish.

    • @Amazing Ace – You covered all of that well. From a health standpoint, one is better with pubic hair. Trimming probably makes no difference, but removal does have some minor risks.

      • Thank you, Paul. I am, indeed, a veritable fount of unusual health and related sex facts and trivia. Just call me Ol’ Encyclopedia Ace! No wait, on second thought, please don’t call me that. That truly does NOT need to be my nickname, here or anywhere else, lol.

        You’re quite correct, trimming is by far the much, MUCH safer option. Provided, of course, that one uses an electric trimmer rather than a pair of scissors. Oh, the horror stories I’ve read . . . *shudder*

  4. You’re really braving the lion’s den on this one, Paul. I’ll be interested to see how the comments play out.

    A big factor in the equation is simply novelty. Novelty produces dopamine, the pleasure neurotransmitter which increases attraction.

    My personal standpoint is that my husband has committed his sexual exclusivity to me for the rest of our lives. He gets to look at me, and only me. That means I’ll go a long way toward meeting his preferences. I shake things up with personal grooming, lingerie, etc. It keeps things exciting for both of us.

    It’s not a one-way street, though. My husband also does a bit of manscaping to keep things pleasant for me.

    And yes, waxing does hurt like heck. Sugaring is a little less painful, and you can do it at home. I wrote a blog post on it a while ago that some of your readers might find helpful.

    Kudos on tackling the hard stuff.
    Rebecca Watson recently posted…Review – Does Zestra Really Increase Female Arousal?My Profile

  5. 1. Never underestimate a woman’s intuition.
    2. I was an OB/GYN nurse in the 80’s and early 90’s prior to computers and internet being household words. I saw many female pubic areas on a daily basis. Seeing a completely shaven pubic region was an unusual experience in those days.
    3. Perhaps we are completely naive to the insidious influence porn has had on our society.
    Somewhat like the frog in boiling water anecdote.
    4. Knowing human nature, give it time. One day having a thick blanket of pubic hair will be what’s considered sexy.

    • @Jolie – There are guys who are into as much hair down there as possible. Back in the day, there was a porn mag for that, and I’m sure you can find it on-line now.
      Personally, it sounds like a lot of work and discomfort to me. But we’ve had several women tell us they have shaved daily since being a teenager and wouldn’t have it any other way.

  6. To each their own. Lucky for me, my husband is ok with my hair. Good thing, too, because I wouldn’t subject myself to the process just to show him I’m willing to please him. I do a heck of a lot of other things to show him that. He never gives me OS (and I don’t ask for it). I give him OS and his very profuse hair can be a problem, but I feel pretty sure he would not remove his hair if I asked him to. Nor would I ask him to do something I wouldn’t be willing to do myself. So, it’s a non-issue for us. But – Paul, you made me crazy with ‘do this for the man she loves’. Grrr. I do a hundred other things for the man I love. When is it enough?

  7. Interesting…I wouldn’t have remotely thought of this issue as a marital one. I shaved all my hair down there off one time, for my own curiosity, and it was incredibly uncomfortable. Once it came back, now I just keep it trimmed. My husband has told me he’s fine with it however it’s most comfortable for me. I guess I never realized this was such a big issue in marriage. Hmmm.

  8. My wife asked why I asked her to do it and I said it was for the same reason I don’t want hair in my food. She gets the idea but doesn’t do it for her own reasons. I have to keep my face shaved though. Double standards. ;)

  9. 😂 Not telling, eh?

    I’ll tell. I do trim it now, but we did fight about it the first time he brought it up. Unfortunately one of the other big name marriage bloggers posted a while back that she was not a fan of trimming because she felt it was trying to have women look like little girls and that could only be fueled by porn, so when he asked if that might be something I would like, I got all indignant and told him I was a woman and wanted to look like a woman, thankyouverymuch.

    But I wasn’t listening to him. We talked about it again several months later, and he wasn’t suggesting it because he wanted it; he was suggesting it because he thought it might help me as I was trying to overcome my aversion to oral sex. I unfortunately received the message growing up that women were gross down there and found it disgusting that he would want to do that and couldn’t understand how he could possibly enjoy it. So I removed it from the table for the first 8 years or so. But all these marriage blogs eventually made me realize the problem was me, not him. So I trimmed. And was surprised to find that I like it. I feel super sexy now when I do. I don’t shave it all off cuz that feels horrible for me, but I trim it so it’s about 1/8 inch or so… As short as possible without being too pokey. I still struggle to receive oral; the first 5-10 minutes are me stressing about whether he is comfortable or if I am clean enough or if he is bored, but eventually I am able to let go and enjoy. Progress, not perfection.

    So I shave for me, even if it is only to help me relax more. But yes, he loves it. He loves seeing me, and he loves it knowing that when I’ve trimmed, it means I’m in the mood for some fun. Hope none of that was TMI.

    • This is NOT to say that pubic hair is gross. He was merely trying to eliminate the “reasons” I gave that oral might be gross, and I thought getting hair in his mouth would be one of them. He knew this already because I have asked him to keep things nice and neat too.

    • @Kay – Who started the whole “To make them look like little girls” thing? Must have been someone desperate for a reason to make it wrong.
      I won’t go into all the details, but pubic hair is far the only difference in the vulva of a child and an adult woman.
      Glad you got it worked out!
      Paul Byerly recently posted…Two Wrongs Still Don’t Make A RightMy Profile

      • Hmm, yes, that is true. But is this a fact most men know, when they’re almost never expected to change diapers (either their kids or their younger siblings)? Or if they never had a little sister growing up, that they had to help bathe? For all they know, hair IS the only difference between a child and an adult’s anatomy. NEVER underestimate the depth of ignorance some guys have on the subject of female anatomy. Knew a guy once, who didn’t know why women needed pads/tampons/etc. during their peiods, who thought they should just be able to “hold it” until they could get to a bathroom!

          • Yes, obviously women would know the difference. I’m not saying THEY wouldn’t; I’m saying MEN wouldn’t necessarily know. Do try and keep up, my good man! :-)

  10. I asked my wife to get waxed for me after many years of marriage- she agreed and she says she likes the way it feels and it makes her feel sexy. Now she does it several times a year. We both love it.

  11. “Who started the whole ‘To make them look like little girls” thing? Must have been someone desperate for a reason to make it wrong.’ ”

    Totally agree. Why so much judgment over what is a personal preference?

    I’ve never watched porn, but I prefer things smooth. I don’t want to be a ‘little girl’; I don’t have ‘little girl’ issues. It simply looks better to me aesthetically. And feels better.

    How is it any different from shaving underarms and legs? Young girls have smooth underarms and legs, so are we trying to look like little girls when we shave those areas?
    Rebecca Watson recently posted…Doing This One Thing Makes Him Less Likely to Want YouMy Profile

  12. I actually prefer pubic hair. I find it sexy, natural, and makes me feel I’m with a woman. My wife likes this. She feels pubic hair is part of being a mature woman as well.

  13. Rebecca and Paul~ Thanks for bringing common sense and sanity to this. Personally we enjoy that a wife would partially or totally shave, while we’d reserve that approval for men who shave their chests, etc. LOL. A great post too.

  14. @Lea

    This old adage sums it up for me …

    “In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.”

    It’s what I’ve tried to apply to my kids (hard sometimes when they come home with crazy hair styles), and it’s an adage I’ve tried to teach my kids to apply in their own lives.

    And my husband has actually asked me to (sugar) wax his chest hair from time to time. So, yeah … a good chance to exact my revenge. LOL

    • O, so yours is not mere “homespun” opinion. :) just discovered you have a site also.
      How nice!

      We’re new to these discussions & happily find folks don’t shy away from ‘real issues’ that Christians and all couples face. :) again.

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