‘I’m an Anal Surgeon, and This Is Why You Shouldn’t Wax Your Butt (and What To Do Instead)’

Photo: Getty Images / Photographer, Basak Gurbuz Derman
There's nothing about getting your butt crack waxed that sounds fun. But, beyond the question of enjoyment, is waxing your butt safe? According to anal surgeon Evan Goldstein, DO, the founder of sexual health brand Future Method, the answer depends on how often you do it.

"If you love your hair and you're just doing this as a phase, then yes, you can wax, shave, or sugar," says Dr. Goldstein. "Just try to use our anal exfoliant or soothing cream after. If you're like, 'Hey, I want my butt smooth and I want to be able to make it like the rest of my body,' then laser hair removal is the best. It's just going to be the best longevity and it gets rid of that hair follicle. So that now you don't have to think of regrowth, but also you don't have to think of that pimple-ish component that's there."

Laser hair removal not only means you don't have to worry about the hair growing back, but you also don't have to worry about treating any in-grown hairs or pimples between the cheeks.

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"When you look at waxing, when you look at shaving, or you look at sugaring, or whatever you're doing, the problem that I see a lot of is that you're not getting rid of the hair follicle," says Dr. Goldstein. "So what happens is that, as it grows back, it can grow back in a very funky way. Meaning you can get a significant amount of pimples and acne. You can get ingrown hairs that sometimes can cause an abscess and an infection."

Plus, these more aggressive forms of hair removal can damage the most tender, localized area of your butt.

"A lot of the places that do the waxing and all the other stuff are not really anal specific," he says. "They're not really understanding how fragile that tissue is. Especially as you get really close to the anal opening, especially with women. Front and back and the butt is very, very soft and fragile. It's such a thin tissue."

This is especially an issue if you're having anal sex. Dr. Goldstein says in addition to causing microtears to the anus, waxing your butt can also strip away good bacteria that are there to protect you from sexually transmitted infections.

If you're after consistent smoothness, Dr. Goldsein says laser hair removal is the only way to go. "I push laser hair a lot," he says. According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of a laser session in 2020 was $389. You'd likely need more than a few sessions, but when you tally out how much you spend getting your butt strip waxed, the cost of laser may not look so stark. Before you make that wax appointment, consider going au natural or looking into laser hair experts in your area.

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