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Bikini Waxes for 12-Year-Olds? Horrifying but True!

Dec 3, 2011 at 10:01 AM Chime in now


According to Thursday's Good Morning America, girls as young as 12 are now getting bikini waxes. So, pretty much as soon as they have anything to wax -- or even before! Last year, one New York spa made headlines for its "virgin waxing" services, where you wax kids as young as possible under the theory that it will diminish the amount of leg, underarm and pubic hair that gets to grow in.

You're probably asking lots of logical questions right now. Don't these girls have mothers? And don't those mothers have brains? A better question might be: Just where is the plot that we as a society have, collectively, misplaced?

There is a full-on war happening right now. And the new terrorist at large is your vagina -- these little girls just happen to be on the front lines. PETA, the longtime defender of animals, has teamed up with Ministry of Waxing (an international chain of waxing studios) to launch a campaign where the Ministry donates money to PETA with every bikini wax. Great. The problem is, the new ad equates not waxing your public hair to wearing animal fur. Because that's the same. Wearing the hair that grows out of your body naturally is totally just as gross as killing another animal, skinning it, and draping its fur around you for fashion. Meanwhile Knockout Panties are getting buzz for their ability to absorb all the "sweat, spots and little leaks," that, apparently, other underwear just can't handle. Your perfectly normal panties aren't doing a good enough job of keeping a lid on everything your perfectly normal vagina does. 

Lest you think I'm some sort of hippie: I spent ten months in beauty school learning, among other things, how to wax vaginas (well, to be technical: vulvas, since, fun fact, your vagina lives indoors). So I'm not just giving you the headlines, I'm telling you this from the trenches. The first thing every bikini wax client does is apologize for her hairiness. Hello! Of course you are hairy. That's how adult women are made. Plus, if you weren't, I wouldn't have a job to do. And while I never had to give a 12-year-old a bikini wax, I did wax the eyebrows of a 13-year-old, whose father (yep, father) wondered if she also needed her lip done. She did not.

At its root, this vagina problem is much like our belly problem. There's nothing inherently wrong with wanting to take all your pubic hair off for aesthetic purposes, just like there's nothing wrong with wanting six-pack abs. But when this toned, hairless ideal is all we see, and we start seeing it -- and trying to achieve it -- younger and younger, that's a problem. It's a problem because it sends kids mixed messages about sex. And it's a problem because Home it makes us so convinced that our normal bodies are wrong and ugly that we end up apologizing for them to total strangers.

Unfortunately, the solution to this one isn't quite as easy as a real girl vagina project. Because I'm pretty sure that's just porn. But maybe, the next time you're tempted to wax, scent, douche, cover-up or otherwise "fix" your ladyparts, ask yourself if you're really doing these things to make yourself happy. And think about how you would explain your actions to a 12-year-old. Apparently, she needs to know. 

Do you think society is increasingly uncomfortable with natural women? Is it that much harder to raise a strong girl these days? Chime in now!

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