You probably have, at some point, removed some – perhaps even all – of your pubic hair. It’s not uncommon for American women to remove their pubic hairs – you can even find a detailed guideline in wikiHow. According to a national study in 2016, nearly 84% of the 3,316 women surveyed had groomed their pubic hair, and 62% had removed it all at least once.
You may have heard that pubic grooming may lead to some skin conditions, however, a new study showed it’s also linked to Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STIs), the most common infections among adults.
About the study
Researchers conducted a survey of US residents aged 18-65 years. The survey asked participants to about pubic hair grooming practices, sexual behaviors and STI history.
In the study, researchers defined “extreme grooming” as “removal of all pubic hair more than 11 times per year” and “high-frequency grooming as daily/weekly trimming.”
STIs involved in the study include:
Cutaneous STIs: herpes, human papillomavirus, syphilis, and molluscum.
Secretory STIs: gonorrhea, chlamydia, and HIV.
Slice were analyzed separately.
Of 7.580 respondents who completed the survey, 74% reported grooming their pubic hair, 66% of men and 84% of women.
Researchers use odds ratio (OR) to describe the relationship between pubic hair grooming and STIs. The more the OR exceed 1, the stronger the link is between pubic grooming and STIs. After adjusting for age and lifetime sexual partners, the results are shown in the form below.
Types of STIs or lice
For extreme and high-frequency groomers, the associations between pubic grooming and cutaneous STIs were stronger.
Types of groomers
To conclude, among a representative sample of US residents, pubic hair grooming was positively related to self-reported STI history. Researchers are also planning to gain insight into STI risk-reduction strategies.
Next time when you try to remove your pubic hair, whether for a better outlook with bikini or for a more pleasant sexual activity, pay attention to the potential risks it may bring to you.