Trends in pubic topiary

naked at lunch

 

I’m currently reading Mark Haskell Smith’s book ‘Naked at Lunch: A reluctant nudist’s adventures in the clothing optional world’.

It’s an exceptionally interesting read, and covers a fair bit of the naturist movement’s history. As a bit of a self-style naturism historian, there’s lots I knew, but other bits that were new and enlightening to me. I’d recommend it to anyone who has even a passing interest in naturism.

I’m currently at the chapter ‘Trends in Genital Topiary’, which examines the way in which naturists have bought into what started as a porn industry trope, one for removing pubic hair, pretty much became the norm within naturism (as it also has for many people who aren’t naturist, with pubic hair becoming as endangered as pandas or white rhinos in some societies).

Let me pick out a couple of quotes, and then apply them to SL.

‘Smoothies are men and women who prefer to be completely hairless...(because)…taking off this last layer of covering will ‘promote the classical aesthetic idea of a smooth and hairless body”.

The author then quotes some ‘smooth naturists’, and one of their websites as ‘It is cleaner and more hygienic, especially for women. The smooth skin is more sensitive and it enhances sexual pleasure in many ways!’

To his credit, the author questions this statement, rightly so, because some medical professionals say that removing, and the act of removal, can sometimes cause cuts and abrasions that will lead to genital warts, so bravo to the author for raising an eyebrow at this. He also questions how a lifestyle so intent on promoting the non-sexual nature of it then has mavericks who say they’re naturist, but whose body hair removal seems to to be for the purpose of sexual pleasure and an ‘aesthetic’ that demands women have a pre-pubescent, little girl look. The thought appears to be formed in the author’s head, although unvoiced, that there’s some slightly disturbing about this. It’s a concern I’d share, sometimes, when I read online ‘naturist’ websites who voice similar ‘aesthetic’ and ‘sexual pleasure’ and ‘looks like a girl’ attributes. Sometimes it’s more than slightly disturbing.

‘It’s ironic that men and women are spending so much time and money grooming a part of their body they are reluctant to reveal’. Indeed. Often, shaving is presented as a side benefit (for both parties) where oral sex is concerned. Again, there may be something in this, I don’t know, but it’s patently not naturism and patently for the purpose of sexual pleasure. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with seeking sexual pleasure, but it’s not part of the naturist movement and I worry, sometimes, that -as swingers and exhibitionists have poisoned the naturist atmosphere of Cap D’Agde in France- the ‘values’ of ‘smoothies’ are possibly poisoning traditional naturism. By all means do it because ‘I like the look’. That’s no different to saying ‘I like long hair, short hair, curly hair, dying my hair blue’. We’re all different and try to achieve different looks. But when phrases such as ‘looks like a girl’ are tossed around, alarm bells ring in my head.

The nature of the way that SL avatars are constructed means that the addition or removal of pubic hair from a female avatar is neither here nor there. The female avatar’s genitalia will be represented ‘accurately’.

The male avatar is different. Because the male’s genitalia are fixed as an add-on (the only way to make a male fit clothes properly), it’s always been a case of buying genitals that sit separate from the body.

Because of the colouration of skins (and separately produced male genitalia) it means a colour match between avatar body and genitalia is sometimes not particularly accurate. It’s made worse by the fact that, sometimes, men seem unconcerned about matching the colour of their avatar’s skin to that of their genitalia. Are SL males colour blind? Why not spend some time tweaking the colour? After all, most of them seem capable of tweaking the size to ridiculous proportions.

Even with tweaking, the colour may not be exact, and the addition of pubic hair can ‘soften’ the colour mis-match. It also ‘softens’ the obvious break-line between body and genitalia.

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Pubic hair gives a male avatar a natural finish

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With no pubic hair (this skin coming with ‘pubic hair’ as part of it) the ‘join’ between skin and genitalia is pronounced.

It is made more evident when the skin is hairless, the join looking unnatural and unrealistic.

With many SL avatars preferring the ‘hairless’ look, I think it’s incumbent on males to, at the very least, work on the colouration of their appendages.

Ella

Underarm hair…it’s a trend, apparently

Back in May, Miley Cyrus was in the news (again) for revealing dyed underarm hair.

Around about the same time I was experimenting with underarm hair, in the sense I was growing it! I wasn’t putting any dye on there, but I had a period where I was quite happy not shaving under my arms and I quite liked the look. I just got lazy in respect of having to do it all the time…a week went by…then a second…

‘Eewwwwww!!!! Gross!!!’ said friends when I mentioned it (or if we had a rare warmish day when I’d be in a tank top and it was visible). I went to the swimming pool, as I do most weeks. ‘Disgusting’, a teenage girl muttered to her boyfriend as I raised my arms to put my swimming cap on, ‘I bet she doesn’t shave anywhere‘, hissed the boyfriend before they both giggled. Just my legs, dear, just my legs.

Strange how we’ve all become conditioned to think of what grows naturally as ‘gross’.

Or do we?

I’ve read that females with unshaven armpits is a bit of a trend on instagram. The NY Post also has done a piece on this in the past few weeks, with one Mum who has stopped shaving her armpits saying “it was kind of startling that these gender stereotypes were already so ingrained (in her five year old daughter). I do it, or rather don’t do it, for me but also as a reminder to my daughter that it’s up to the individual what we decide to do with our bodies.”

Others have taken to youtube to show their approach to  the issue, and explain why shaving is now, for them, ‘out’.

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As a result I took to wearing underarm hair in SL. It did attract comments.

‘Are you like that in RL?’ asked one avatar, and even in text form on the screen you could almost sense a disapproving wrinkling of their nose at the idea.

I didn’t do it to attract comments but just to reflect RL as it was at the time. Besides, I’m operating my life (and Second Life) for me, not you. Your opinion is worthless to me.

We all change hairstyles from time to time, many of us will wax our shave our ‘bikini line’, and many of the younger generation now routinely remove all traces of pubic hair. I suppose there are positives and negatives to this: received wisdom is that pubic hair is there to cushion friction against sensitive parts, and removing it can lead to infections. On the other hand, pubic lice have been practically wiped out around the world due to many women removing their pubic hair. In times gone by, pubic lice, often known as ‘crabs’ was linked in with other venereal diseases.

In the past, apparently, it was not uncommon to hear people talk of having to visit a ‘VD clinic’ because they had ‘a dose of the crabs’ or ‘a dose of the clap’ (gonorrhoea). Nowadays these are referred to as STI’s (sexually transmitted infections) after a period of being known as STD’s (sexually transmitted disease). The reason for the ‘rebranding’ is obvious. These are often easily treatable infections, not a full-blown ‘disease’.

SheMayLookCleanBut

Winning World War 2 by not having sex.

 

But we’re drifting away from the point of the initial post here. Let’s get back on track.

Body hair is natural, there is nothing gross about it, and it’s high time that the media stopped perpetuating the myth that there’s something wrong with it. There isn’t. What there is something wrong with is the idea you can or should be belittled, sneered at or held in contempt for making your own body choices. In a time of tattoos being fashionable, would we stand for people like the media adopting the same approach to tattoos? ‘Ooh, they’re gross. You look like a tramp‘, etc, etc. No. It would be regarded as bullying. The same applies here. A woman’s decision to grow her armpit hair, or even dye it thereafter, should only be reported as that person indulging in ‘a bit of colourful fun’.

During research for this piece, I discovered that it’s not just armpit hair that’s getting colourful. Some ladies are extending use of that bottle of dye downstairs as well.

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I don’t know about you, but I think these two photographs (above) are absolutely stunning and beautiful. They make me want to….well….

..where’s my alt? 🙂

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Hahaha! I like it! I actually like it a lot! 🙂 I got this short hairstyle at Boon & Saikin. Perhaps I need to give my main avatar a radical makeover! 🙂

As for ‘downstairs’, we’ll take this back to where we came in, and the shock revelation that, yes indeed, Miley isn’t a total fan of the razor (follow the first link in this post).

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Ella

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two sets of eyes are better than one

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Whisper pubic hair from Posh Tales (L$50 marketplace)

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jj’s pubic hair L$0 Marketplace

Two sets of eyes are better than one. Or maybe it’s because I’ve established my look that I’m less aware of certain elements of avatar ‘design’. Sylvia has experimented with SL for much of the afternoon, and now she’s getting a hang of the controls I decided to introduce….the Marketplace!

Of course, within a couple of minutes she has unearthed the two items shown above, for wear down below 😉

Not only to both look fantastic, they’re very, very affordable. One prices at just L$50 and the other is absolutely free!

(For photographic purposes I did ask Sylvia to remove her avatar’s clit ring.

Incidentally, these groomed, trimmed but still visible styles of pubic hair are what we’ve been seeing this week.

When I set Sylvia’s avatar up initially I added a nipple ring to the avi (once again true to RL). An afternoon on SL’s marketplace has led her to change this to a bar. I’ve been explaining a little of the ‘SL replicates RL’ concept of SLN at times, and she has decided that the reverse can also be true. Tomorrow, apparently, we’re off in search of a tattoo/piercing parlour to see if she can swap her RL nipple ring for a RL nipple bar.

I did say it would be a different, interesting, and ‘hold on tight’ sort of week.

Ella

Not bare down there!

Last week I asked the question as to whether I should go ‘bare down there’ on my forthcoming naturist holiday. Oddly enough, Cosmopolitan have just published a survey on men’s attitudes towards pubic hair. (via the AskMen website).

The thing is…why ask men? It’s our bodies, and we should be free to do with them as we please, not what men want us to do.

My poll has (phew!) just closed and it’s a tie…13 votes to 13.

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If you’ll pardon the pun, that was a close shave! As we have a tie, we maintain the status quo. This, I offer by way of decision making, is based on long-established British law for maintenance of the status quo in the event of a tied vote. 😉

By the way, remind me not to make stupid offers to Mr.Keng and the readership after a couple of glasses of wine ever again!

I was out this morning at the hairdressers, getting my hair cut before the holiday. While my hair hangs to shoulder length, I often tie it up when on holiday. A beach can be breezy, and wrapping a bandana around it certainly keeps it from flapping around in my face. Either that, or I ponytail it.

When I got home, and decided to reflect this reality, and so I went hair shopping in SL and was thrilled to find two styles in Truth Hair’s Discount room, only L$50 each, that would replicate this holiday styling as far as bandanas are concerned.

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New hairstyles modelled at the ice-cream stand at Su Casa Naturist

 

I think I prefer the style in the bottom pic, so I’ll go with that in suitable photo-ops when I’m on holiday. I’m still looking for a suitable ponytail style.

And, I’m glad to say, won’t be attacking myself with a razor tonight 🙂

Pookes had claimed ‘she’d save me’ in the comments section of the related post and, indeed, it appears that it’s only her vote and mine that saw the poll tied.

It’s interesting that the Cosmo/AskMen polls kind of reflect a similar sort of divided opinion. Their polls offered more choices for answers on attitudes to female pubic hair, so there’s more variables, but as far as the ‘take it off’ and ‘keep it’ options were concerned, there was very much near-parity in men’s attitudes to it.

 

Ella

 

 

How porn affects people’s attitudes to a normal sexual relationship: SL leading the way in respect of pubic hair?

Only marginally connected to naturism, and I’ll come to that in a moment.

Anne Robinson is a veteran UK journalist, and her name will be known to any UK readers. Recently, a young feminist, Grace Campbell, asked Ms. Robinson, who had never encountered porn before, to look at it and give a reaction to how people are portrayed as well as how else it may be affecting sexual relationships. What they watched together is quite disturbing in some aspects, although it’s good to see that Ms. Robinson’s acerbic tongue is still well to the fore.

Ms. Campbell is absolutely correct about online porn now appearing to drive the expectations in real life sexual relationships with ‘choking’ and anal sex now expected to be part of ‘the deal’. From a personal perspective, yuck! to both, but these are elements that wouldn’t really fall within the remit of SLN. Make your own judgements on those.

The naturist element of the video is where pubic hair is concerned, because pubic hair is very much a ‘thing’ within naturism. It’s discussed from the 2’28” mark, with Ms. Robinson acidly saying that ‘obviously no one in porn has any pubic hair’. Ms. Campbell reports that 66% of females in the 20-24 age group had totally or partially removed their pubic hair in the past month!

She goes on to say that if it’s a woman’s choice, that’s fine, but if partners say things like ‘it’s dirty’ or ‘I won’t sleep with you unless you wax’, or -most amazingly of all- ‘women aren’t supposed to have hair down there’ then ‘porn is having a very negative impact on the way men react to women’s bodies‘.

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Quite clearly I have my own personal perspective on this, as anyone who reads the blog will be aware. It’s natural, it’s there for a reason, it’s more than fine. I’m not advocating that everyone is required to have it, but I would be advocating that everyone has a right to make their own choices about it, not because porn infers we must all be bare down there.

Within RL naturism I remain in a minority by ‘keeping it natural’ and I’m baffled that naturists, who are fairly stern in their disapproval of equating nudity with sex should therefore be at the forefront of following what is a porn trope by almost totally, as a community, following that porn trend. We pride ourselves on our alt-lifestyle choices by being naturists. Why should we then feel that we must look like something from a porn movie?

Happily, with SL, the situation is somewhat different. Six years ago, in a drive to make my avatar as realistic as possible when I started my SL, I bought pubic hair for my avatar to wear. I was, I felt at the time, almost alone in that. Indeed, there were sims I would visit when I definitely was alone in that.  In recent times, and certainly over the past year, I’ve found that more and more female avatars are now wearing pubic hair. Why? As it’s not yet at the forefront of RL fashion, it seems as though it’s a sub-conscious trend that is probably reflecting the RL female’s personal grooming habits. What’s more, it seems to add to what I -and probably many other female avatars- would see as part of an adult woman’s femininity, rather than the Barbie/little girl look that probably remains the majority fashion. SL may be leading the way in this respect. Certainly I don’t expect to see wall to wall carpeting, to coin a phrase, in SL anytime soon. Nor indeed do I expect to see it in RL naturism in huge numbers when I go on holiday. But things are changing. I’m afraid that the 20-24 male age group, if Ms. Campbell’s thought provoking video is anything to go by, are in for a shock.

Ella

 

 

 

Is Bush back?

Is the ‘bush’ pendulum swinging?  we’ve written about this before, but now I learn there is something called the ‘full bush Brazilian‘ which

…involves removing the hair from the labia and butt crack (in accordance with Brazilian-waxing tradition) while leaving everything on top fully grown. It’s the exact opposite of non-Brazilian bikini waxes, which shape the hair on the pubic mound but leave the undercarriage untouched.

I’m not sure just how accurately SL reflects RL in this respect, but it’s clear that more avatars (male and female) are adopting a ‘natural’ look down there. Perhaps this is happening in RL too, I’ll let you know when my naturist year gets going.

In the meantime, SL’s female avatars do seem to be going in greater numbers for a little bit of a natural look and that Barbie doll/little girl look that has held sway for a decade or so seems to be on its way out, at least until the pendulum swings again.

We would have tried to illustrate this with a few examples from SL, but snapping voyeur photos in world seems to us to be as invasive of privacy as doing the same thing in real life.

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While Nearly Tactile remains the go-to store for female (and male) pubic hair, and Jinks does another fine ‘bush’, I note that Tokyo Girl also does pubic hair in a variety of styles and colours. We’ll be bringing you a report on that, something we’ve not previously blogged, next week.

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The styles and colours available from Tokyo Girl

For men, the Body Hair shop does a variety of styles which, again, we’ll report on next week, as well as Jaryth’s Barber Shop, which also offer 3D prim pubic hair for men (as well as other body hair).

I suspect that, next week, SLN is going to resemble a 1970s naturist magazine, given the amount of body hair we’re going to cover. 🙂

Pookes

Dyeing out? Shaving under your armpits might just be a thing of the past.

I note The Guardian reports that ladies growing armpit hair is a thing now.

They say it will be 2015’s most subversive trend. Not sure about that. The first rule of subversion is not to tell anyone you’re trying to subvert something before you’ve subverted it.

This pit-hair colouring is the work of Seattle blogger Roxie Hunt, whose thoughts on the topic may be read on her blog. Thankfully, she never mentions the word ‘subvert’. That’s the sole preserve of lazy journalists.

Roxie signs off the post with the thought that, having done a friend’s armpits, she could…you know…maybe do her bush too.

At this time of year it would be entirely possible to do it without anyone (other than family, maybe) ever finding out anyway, due to us all being pretty much permanently covered up in that area of our bodies.

I have to confess that the idea of it tickles me (no pun intended). As you know, you’ve seen the pix 🙂 I keep it natural ‘down there’ (SL replicating RL, again!) so I went exploring on the Marketplace and found pubic hair and armpit hair from Route 666 for L$89

As Eve’s original hair (from Dura) was a strawberry red colour, she had to head off to the bathroom for a cut and dye job, another hairstyle from Dura (L$120) that was more of a deep blue shade that I liked.

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Here’s Eve in her pyjamas, about to apply colour when she realises it’s always a damned messy job, so…

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You just might be able to tell in this shot that she’s already done ‘down there’ too. 🙂

And finally, dye in place for the correct length of time, she washes it off to leave her body hair looking….marvellous! Yes, I know some of you will readily disagree. 🙂

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The pubic hair isn’t as realistic as Nearly Tactile’s work, but it at least does have the effect of looking kind of alt.girl, as the Guardian put it.

Anyway…the finished results?

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These are ‘tattoo’ layers from Route 666, and you have the options of apply them as one layer (i.e. upstairs and downstairs together) or separately for each area of the body.

And there we have it. SLN ahead of what’s tipped to be a trend in 2015. I have to say, slipping off my Eve alt persona (she’s so unlike me) and back to being Ella, that Ella might well just add the Route666 underarm hair herself in this calendar year 🙂

Ella