Among friends and around the web, I hear that more and more women are tossing their razors and canceling their waxing appointments in favor of the more au naturel option. "Prior to recently, it was assumed that there was one standard way to care for your hair down there—which was to get rid of it," says Lillian Tung, co-founder of Fur, a brand that makes a pubic hair oil. "It's now more open and considered as admirable to grow it out as it is to trim it. There's not just one right choice—it's what you feel."
Of course, you can still care for your nether-regions even if you skip on trimming your pubic hair. Just as your self-care practices extend from your scalp down to your toes, so too, should they apply to the area in-between. "Your beauty routine should definitely include the pubic area, too," says Tung. "The pubic hair and skin area is an under-explored beauty frontier, and it actually has specific needs. The hair and skin are in very close proximity to each other, and you can't just use any regular skin-care or hair-care focused product." So, just how should you address this? Let's get to it.
Curious about how to groom a bush or grow it out healthily? Keep scrolling for Tung's best tips for maintenance.
Just like with your skin-care products, the products you use on your bikini area shouldn't have fragrance (which is an umbrella term that could contain any number of irritating ingredients). "Your skin is very sensitive down there," says Tung. "A lot of products are about deodorizing the area, and can have strong acids, alcohols, or added fragrances. These ingredients can cause irritation."
Keep the pH balanced
Another way to handle the sensitivity in the pubic area is to find products that balance its pH. "We love tea tree oil because it's antimicrobial, clears pores, and regulates your sebum production," says Tung. And that means that it can help when you get ingrown hairs that become inflamed or filled with pus. "It'll give you softer skin with no redness or bumps."
Trim it the right way
If you're looking to rock a totally natural bush, don't worry about trimming it. But if you want it more contained, Tung recommends special scissors. "Use scissors manually for more detailed work. Make sure you have dedicated bikini area scissors, and be sure to wipe them down after each use," she says.
One might wonder if a bush requires a certain underwear type. "In the summertime if you're worried about irritation, ingrowns, or chafing, it's important to keep your underwear dry and breathable," says Tung. "Stick with cotton."
Originally published August 22, 2018; updated September 5, 2018.
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