The question that plagues women around the world.
The labiaplasty is a modern phenomenon where women have the size of their labia minora reduced (i.e. the inner lips of your vulva). Why pay between $2,000- $6,000 for this procedure? Some women experience discomfort, itching, and pulling from an elongated labia minora.
Others? They don’t like how it looks.
Labiaplasty Surgery on the Rise
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, 2017 brought a 39% increase in labiaplasty surgeries from 2016 (1). Plastic surgeons speculate that a lot of these cases arise from the “normal vagina theory”- where women believe they have an abnormal looking vagina (well, vulva, since the vagina is internal).
The early 90s introduced the Brazilian Wax to the world, and the modern trend of “completely bare down there” arose. A decrease in hair brought light to the full anatomy of lady parts- and an easy comparison to porn stars, Playboy Bunnies, etc. Suddenly there became a standard for what was viewed as normal. Think about it: if your friend comes up to you and says, “Hey, I'm getting a labiaplasty,” wouldn’t you think to yourself: omg is MY vagina ugly?!
Do not fret, your vagina is probably not abnormal or ugly.
Let’s Talk Labias
Fact: It is estimated that about half of women have labia minora that are longer than their labia majora (2).
If your labia minora is long:
- Prominent inner lips: the labia minora is longer in length and peaks out
- Dangling inner lips: surpass the the labia majora by an inch or more- can hang outside of underwear
- Asymmetrical inner lips: one lip of the labia minora is longer than the other
If your labia minora is exposed:
- Curved outer lips: shaped like a horseshoe and the labia minora may also pass below the majora
- Open lips: your outer lips are flat against your pubic bone, and they are separated
- Long dangling outer lips: your labia majora may hang outside of your underwear; because of the length, inner lips may be exposed
If your labia minora is hidden:
- Prominent outer lips: skin my thin and loose or thick and puffy, they also sit a bit lower on your vulva
- Small closed lips: Inner lips are concealed completely. Least common type of vulva- most commonly seen in adult entertainment
The Designer Vagina Myth
Data talks, and the consensus is that there’s no such thing as a “normal vagina”. Vulvas come in so many shapes, sizes, and colors there shouldn’t even be a set standard. Remember, vaginal health should be the number one priority.
- Avoid yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis, and other issues by eliminating scented soaps or any douches in the area- and by keeping everything clean and dry.
- Always remember to use protection for any sexual activity, as STD rates are at an all time high according to the CDC (3).
- Try the Bare Essentials daily vitamin and the BINTO probiotic to promote good bacteria and overall vaginal health.