Julia Gabbert gives her view on how women have internalized society's double standards. Gabbert thinks…
Designer Vaginas: Vaginal plastic surgey is on the rise among young women in the US and UK
It’s not enough that it’s too hairy, too dark and too wide. Now your vagina is too floppy. Labiaplasty, the surgical “perfection” of the inner labia, is becoming a trend — particularly among young women.
Labiaplasty was originally used to correct actual abnormalities. But the procedure has taken a dirty turn for the worst. Now designer vaginas, as they’re so cringingly dubbed, are available at a clinic near you — without medical necessity.
The result of the surgery is what women are calling the “Barbie,” as if the doll hasn’t done enough for women’s body images. The Barbie can be achieved in one of two ways. I’ll start with the least disturbing.
An obtuse angled wedge is snipped out of the labia, and the two remaining sliced sides are sewn together; this creates a teeny-tiny inner labia. The other way to get a Barbie is to completely remove the inner labia. The intention is to create a smooth tight-skinned plastic looking vag — like Barbie. Who ironically has no genitalia at all.
A panel of experts discussed the trend at the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery last April. The moderator of the event, Dr. Grant Stevens, said his practice has seen a 500 percent increase in elective female genital surgery over the previous four years. According to Stevens, the panel gathered to discuss ways plastic surgeons could “beautify the female genital region.”
Seeking out this kind of procedure for purely aesthetic reasons can only mean there is something psychologically wrong with you. I mean that literally. The big bad media monster has possessed these women and made them think they aren’t good enough the way they are.
Sex is great, and genitals aren’t pretty. That’s a fact of life. The unrealistic expectations for women are absolutely insane. They’ve been insane for — oh, I don’t know — most of history. But surgically altering one’s genitals to make them fit an image takes the problem to a whole different, messed up level.
Labiaplasty among young women in the U.K. is becoming so popular that the U.K.’s Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (RCOG) proposed new guidelines for the procedure earlier this month. The RCOG urges doctors to recommend therapy for prospective clients and to avoid doing the procedure on girls under the age of 18. The Daily Mail recently reported 250 girls under the age of 14 have had the surgery over the past five years.
This is what the world has come to. Girls in middle school are getting these procedures done, and their guardians are allowing it.
Labiaplasty is only the most recent trend of “designing” the vagina. Women can also have their outer labia sliced smaller. Or for a real treat, they can have their vulva injected with fat and other fillers for a plumper appearance. Then there’s that pesky clitoral hood women are choosing to slice off (the clitoral hood is actually referred to as a “redundancy” by plastic surgeons). If hood removal doesn’t make you pretty enough then you can get a clitoral reduction. Trust me, you don’t want to know the details on that one.
Sharon Osbourne admitted earlier this month on a British talk show that she had her vagina narrowed and her labia sliced. According to Osbourne, who has openly undergone many plastic surgeries, her vaginal nip/tuck was the worst and most “excruciating” of all her procedures.
TMZ recently announced that Sydney Leather (former congressman Anthony Weiner’s sexting partner), who recently entered the porn biz, plans to auction off her removed labia after undergoing the procedure.
The porn industry is repeatedly cited as one of the main culprits of popularizing the designer vagina, the same way it popularized the Brazilian wax.
The Brazilian waxing — the normalized process of ripping out every bit of a woman’s pubic hair — leaves everything smooth and bald like Barbie. But you won’t really look like Barbie until there’s literally nothing there to be seen. Is this the rationale women are using? One would think the waxing, bleaching and kegeling (pelvic excersizes)would be enough — but it seems the female body won’t be perfect until we’re all walking, talking Barbies.