One of the great mysteries about human beings is why we have pubic hair (androgenic hair). All other mammals have thick hair all over their bodies and finer, sparser hair in their genital area. Humans have almost no body hair (Mediterranean men excepted) and quite an impressive bush of pubic hair.
Why? Nobody really knows. The best guess is that pubic hair and armpit hair grow in areas where pheromone secretion takes place. The theory is that the hair traps these erotic scents to help us attract members of the opposite sex. This would also help to explain why teenaged boys refuse to bathe – they instinctively know they need all the help they can get to seem attractive to chicks.
There’s also the theory that pubic hair helps keep us warm, but most people don’t have an issue with cold genitals whether or not they have hair there. And if it were true that we have body hair to keep us warm, we would have evolved with a lot more body hair, especially on our feet, hands, ends of our noses and other places that are always cold.
Some theorists believe pubic hair helps keep the genital areas cleaner and free from bacteria, but that’s a crazy theory because what could be a better breeding ground for bacteria than a warm, damp, dark, hairy place?
Other theories for the existence of pubic hair include:
- making your genitalia look better just like your face and head look better with thick, luxurious hair
- free dental floss
- to indicate whether anyone else has been using your soap
Whatever it’s doing there, the recent trend, especially among teenagers and 20-somethings, is to get rid of it all.
Prostitutes in ancient Greece and Egypt actually started this trend for hygienic reasons and as a clear indicator of their profession. For a long time in various parts of Europe only prostitutes shaved their legs and armpits, too. I forgot to ask if that’s still the case.
In North America, however, female body shaving has been going on in some form since May of 1915 when an ad executive with the Wilkinson Sword Company (Gillette) designed a campaign to convince women that underarm hair was unhygienic and unfeminine. Within 2 years, sales of razors doubled as women frantically removed their unsightly body hair.
Because of the porn industry, where women shave their pubic areas for more graphic and detailed views of their pudendas, pubic shaving and trimming has become accepted in the mainstream.
Rich people in Victorian England liked to collect the pubic hair from their lovers as souvenirs. (I don’t know why this was only a hobby for the rich. I’m guessing 19th century poor people’s pubes came with a lot of unwanted tourists.) Anyway, Victorian men would pin their lovers’ pubic locks to their hats to prove their virility or they’d exchange pubic locks as signs of affection.
The Museum of St. Andrews University in Scotland has a snuff box collection. One of the snuff boxes belonged to King George IV and is full of the pubic hair of one of his many, many, many mistresses.
If you’re thinking of giving your nether regions a bit of a trim, maybe the video below will help give you some style ideas.
*** Before you start indiscriminately trimming your “down there” area, however, be aware that removing the hair around the anus makes it impossible to pass gas silently. It’s a fact. Look it up.