Guide to Genital Shaving

Part I of III

One of the most discussed subjects, when it comes to BDSM, is genital shaving. Go read any popular discussion list or newsgroup - every so often the subject will pop up again. There are many different ideas and opinions on shaving. In this section we'll try to outline what can and cannot be done, and how to do it safely and manageably.

The very basics first

There are various techniques to temporarily or permanently remove pubic hair. We'll describe all of them in this section, but let's start at the very beginning. (Note: there's very little difference between the male and female genital area when it comes to shaving, with one major exception: shaving the male genital area is a lot more work and - especially when doing it yourself - the risk of self-inflicted cuts is higher.)

For starters, let's dispel a few urban legends:

  ¥ When you shave your hair, it will grow back faster - Nope, the growth process will neither speed up, nor will it slow down, it'll just grow as it did before. And by the way, especially in the genital area, hair breaks and is pulled out all the time as a result of friction. The follicles (where the hair grows) can't see or feel if you shave. A hair - no matter what commercials may try to tell you - is dead material. It doesn't feel, it doesn't register anything and it doesn't keep records of previous treatment. The fact of the matter is that as you grow older the body hair in some areas may grow a little faster - and longer - but that's only the result of redundant genetic encoding.

  ¥ When you shave your hair will become thicker - Also not true. Again, this may be the result of the aging process (between 20 and 50).

  ¥ Shaving creates ingrown hairs - If this was true, the vast majority of men would spend half their lives treating ingrown hair, since they shave every day. Ingrown hair is the result of poor shaving (not close enough), poor maintenance (not frequent enough) or regrowing it on purpose but with insufficient care. Yes, you do need to care for pubic hair in the event you want to grow it back.

Why is genital shaving so popular in the BDSM Scene?

There are various reasons for the fact that genital shaving is probably one of the most widespread habits in the BDSM community . In fact, in some countries and areas, shaving a submissive is almost general custom. First of all this: bear in mind that there are no general rules. You and only you are the master of your own sexuality and as always: if you don't want it, don't do it. And if you want to do it "differently"? Do it differently.

  ¥ The main attraction in shaving is the sense of vulnerability. The human skin - especially in the genital area - suddenly becomes very soft and the feeling is totally different. Plus: the view is totally different.

  ¥ Another main attraction is the fact that to many submissives a shaven genital area is a secret sign of submission. Both partners know about it, the sub feels it every day, maintaining it is an act of submission and a powerful reminder, and you can do it without anybody else knowing about it.

  ¥ Quite a few people do it for hygienic reasons. Especially if you have genital piercings shaving the area is a very good idea.

  ¥ Finally, to many people there is the aspect of subtle humiliation. In ancient Egypt and Greece prostitutes were obliged to shave, both for hygienic reasons and as a clear signal of their profession.

A few things to consider before shaving the genitals

Every body is different and hence all body hair is different. Some have a lot, others have less, colours are different and growing characteristics are different. What this means is that in your individual case things may not always be as the general aspects described here. For example, some people will grow their body hair back very fast, while, for others, it will take a long time. For this reason, efforts to remove pubic hair in a more permanent way may not be easy and sometimes even entirely impossible.

One thing is obvious though: unless you opt for permanent removal, shaving is something that you will need to do regularly - sometimes even daily - if you're planning to keep the surface smooth. As every 14 or 15 year old boy knows: once you start to shave there is no turning back, unless you're planning to grow a beard.

The other thing is that you'll need to invest in special shaving equipment and care products. What's suitable for other areas, such as face, legs or armpits, won't always be suitable for the genital area. And that goes for both men and women.

This article continues on the next page. You can use this
link - Genital Shaving ~ Part II - to go there now.

Based on materials from the POWERotics Foundation
© 1996-2000; republished here with their permission;
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