Last month, South Korean designer Kaimin sent models down the runway at New York Fashion Week decked out in futuristic metallic jackets and… merkins. Yes, merkins, a.k.a. pubic wigs. Some models walking the designer’s show skipped bottoms altogether in favour of big, bushy, well, bushes, while others donned nude underwear adorned with faux landing strips.
Of course, Kaimin’s show might be the most recent indicator of pubic hair’s trendy resurgence, but there have been other signs that bush is slowly but surely making a comeback. Last summer, Amber Rose posted a sexy shot of herself on Instagram with the hashtag to promote her annual Slut Walk. And remember back in 2013, when Gwyneth Paltrow told Ellen that she was rocking a in her nether regions? Women either applauded or were appalled—at the time, the Brazillian reigned supreme and wax bars seemed to be opening up on every corner. Nevertheless, it helped to open up a discussion on how we dress up (or down?) our lady bits.
But now that the trend is swinging the other way, are non-celeb women as interested in going au natch, or are we still hanging onto two decades of barely-there pubic hair, which the patrons of porn would still have us believe is the sexiest choice? And how does the F-word (feminism, duh—what did you think we meant?) play into it all?
We talked to 10 women from across Canada about exactly that. Here’s what they had to say.
Nathalia Allen, 26, Toronto
Like many women who find themselves fresh out of a relationship, Allen says her pubes are now less of a priority. “I like that I don’t have to wax as often. I have sensitive skin and it’s a common issue for people of colour to experience ingrown hairs,” she says. “I’ve been lasering since the summer, it’s been a new experience and I’m very happy with the results. Getting laser done has minimized that issue although it still happens.” Allen and her group of friends lean towards a bare look. “The majority [of my friends] say bare, and I agree, but I don’t mind a groomed bush as well. I say it’s the inside that counts anyway.”