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BLOGS TYDLYN

Barbies

ELSA:

Hygend Hert, Daniela, soos my Ouma Bettie altyd gesê het:

Asof dit nie genoeg is dat ons elke kunsie en kosmetiek-ding onder die son moet inspan om ‘n tree voor die tyd te bly en naarstiglik moet poog om so lank moontlik jonk te lyk nie, is daar nou nóg ‘n, uhmmm, ou plekkie waaroor ons ons moet verknies… Heelwat suid van ons verplooide nekke ondertoe!

“Vaginal Rejuvenation” vir ‘n regte ontwerpersvagina, nogal!

Bid jou aan. Daar sit ek toe skoon verstom en luister vir Dr Chetan Patel, plastiese chirurg by Laserderm in Johannesburg, oor die groeiende aanvraag na vaginale verfraaiing, wat (vanselfsprekend) van Amerika af hier aangewaai gekom het en waarmee hy hom reeds twee of drie keer per maand besig hou. Die operasie, waarmee dinge doer onder bietjie mooier, netjieser en jonger geknip en genaai (!) word, word Perineal Rejuvenation and Beautification genoem.

Vroue wat dit laat doen, wil so bietjie jonger daar lyk, of hul mans wil hê hulle moet dit laat doen. Slegs ‘n klein persentasie (32%) van vroue laat die operasie om die labia kleiner te sny (labiaplasty), glo doen om “funksionele” redes wat met hul leefstyl en loopbane te doen het, soos atlete, fietsryers, gimnaste, perderuiters, dansers en bikini modelle.

En dit kos die rojale bedrag van R20 000 tot R30 000.

As dinge nou regtig fisiek ongemaklik daar rond voel, is dit dalk te verstane, maar dat jy of jou man nou regtig ‘n obsessie kan ontwikkel oor die jeugdige voorkoms al dan nie van jou vrouedele, slaan my bietjie dronk. Die goeie dokter (hy’t darem bietjie gebloos tydens sy praatjie) sê hy beveel dit beslis nie aan net ter wille van ydelheid nie, want dis ‘n prosedure met taamlike potensiaal vir komplikasies.

Kan jy dit kleinkry? My teorie is dat hierdie beheptheid met genitalieë wat moet jonk lyk, veel te danke het aan die “dogtertjie” voorkoms van porno-sterre in rolprente en op televisie: Nou dink mense (en skynbaar mans veral) die sappige kaalperske-voorkoms is standaard!

Net om te beklemtoon dat ons regtig nie almal eenders is nie en dat vaginas nie in standaard-modelle hoef te kom nie, verwys Dr Patel na die Britse beeldhouer   Jamie McCartney se treffende reuse-muurpaneel, Great Wall of Vagina. Die kunswerk (ja, dit is ‘n kunswerk en hoegenaamd nie ‘n erotiese uitbuiting van vroulike genitalieë nie) is saamgestel uit vierhonderd afgietsels van vulvas van vroue tussen die ouderdomme van 18 to 76.

As jy dit nog nie gesien het nie, gaan kyk gou by http://www.greatwallofvagina.co.uk/home hoe die 9-meter-lange beeldhouwerk van tien panele lyk – dis nogal fassinerend en treffend.

Great Wall collage

Twee van die panele van Jamie McCartney se The Great Wall of Vagina tien muurpanelle

Die – vir my, sinryke – motivering vir McCartney se kunswerk lui só :

“It’s not vulgar, it’s vulva! This isn’t just sensation, it is art with a social conscience and McCartney wants people to stop, look and listen.

“… educating people about what normal women really look like…. intended to change the lives of women, forever.

“For many women their genital appearance is a source of anxiety and I was in a unique position to do something about that.

“Vulvas and labia are as different as faces and many people, particularly women, don’t seem to know that.“

McCartney hopes this sculpture will help to combat the exponential rise, seen in recent years, of cosmetic labial surgeries.

“This new fashion for creating ‘perfect’ vaginas sets a worrying trend for future generations of women.”

En toe kom ek hierdie week nóg ‘n prosedure teen wat ‘n vagina jonger, fermer en knusser maak: Die BTL Protégé Intima Non-Invasive Remodeling laserbehandeling.

‘n Laser stimuleer met hitte die produksie van kollageen om labia wat pap of uitgesak is, kleiner, mooier en plomper te maak en dit belowe om jou sekslewe op te kikker.

Ek dink ek hou maar (voorlopig) verby…

Wat dink jy hiervan? Veroudering met grasie, lyk vir my, raak al hoe ingewikkelder. Kan ons nog enigsins net soos normale vroue lyk?

DANIELA:

Eish, Elsa! I’m not sure whether to laugh or weep. Has the world gone mad?

We women already have so many issues with ageing to deal with and now we have another thing to beat ourselves up about.

I’ve read about labiaplasties, where women have their inner labia removed in a procedure called ‘The full Barbie’ by a practitioner. Having your vajayjay (thanks, Grey’s Anatomy!) modeled on that of a plastic doll that is in no sense realistic, is a good thing?

And then there’s the woman who, after having being married for years and having borne children, decided to give her new husband a wedding gift of ‘deflowering’ her shiny new hymen – um, seriously? Who are we kidding here? (A Joan Rivers-style quip about traffic and Du Toits Kloof Tunnel is on the tip of my tongue, but I’ll behave!)

I found The Great Wall of Vagina reassuring, because it shows that no two pudenda are alike, and we should celebrate that.

In my experience, we are far more critical of their appearance than men are. There is something seriously wrong with us if we are comparing our lady bits unfavourably to porn star peaches, as you so eloquently put it, but which I can’t help thinking look like plucked chickens. They have probably undergone all of these surgeries, aesthetic treatments, bleaching (yes, that’s a thing) and much besides.

What concerns me as well is that several young women (from teens to early thirties) I know, seem to have a thing about pubic hair. They tell me they shave it all off, which I think is wrong, wrong, wrong. It gives me the gggggrils. This sentence in www.telegraph.co.uk sums up my horror: ‘girls as young as 12 are trying to rid themselves of their pubescent femininity at a time when they should be celebrating their womanliness.’

These girls have such strange ideas about it being unfeminine and unhygienic, and they also use douches for the same reason. My friend’s granddaughter walked in on her in the bathroom, pointed at her bush and said ‘doggie’. She’d never seen pubic hair.

Besides the porn industry, skimpy underwear has made fuzzless peaches necessary, and I blame Sex and the City (where Carrie, ahem!, waxed lyrical about her Brazilian) and those Kardashians as well. As quoted in Theatlantic.com, Kim famously proclaimed that women ‘shouldn’t have hair anywhere but their heads’.

And let us not forget the torture angle: just a normal bikini wax is painful enough, but a full Brazilian on your tenderest bits, youch! And if you (for whatever reason) have ever shaved your muff, who in their right mind would want to repeat the punishing itch of it growing back in?

Let’s not beat about the bush (sorry!), it worries me that our mothers burned their bras for nothing, and that womanhood has regressed. I understand women who do it for religious reasons, but for others, why would you want to look like a prepubescent girl, for crying out loud?

I believe a lush bush is a sign of womanhood. And groom it, by all means, but keep it as a badge of honour.

Georgia O'Keefe's erotic flower paintings

Georgia O’Keeffe se erotiese blomskilderye 

One of the most sensual images I’ve seen (courtesy of Alain de Botton’s twitter feed) is the picture of artist Georgia O’Keeffe – she of the erotic flower paintings (above) – by her photographer husband Alfred Stieglitz.

Her womanly hips and bush are simply voluptuous.

image

Alfred Stieglitz se foto van sy vrou, skilder Georgia O’Keeffe

Return of the bush?

Happily, there seems to be a backlash, and several US and UK publications have proudly announced that the bush – and even armpit hair – is back. Yep, it’s been a fashion statement this summer!

I have visions of wild forests sprouting from Northern Hemisphere bikini bottoms and pits. The pit revolution started with an edgy Seattle hairstylist (seen below) who blogged about it, and the trend went viral, with the hashtags #dyedpits and #ladypithair.

Of course, this is also faddish, but it can be seen as a step in the right direction as women embracing control over their own body image, whether we think it looks attractive or not.

ARMPIT

My new poster girls are the forthright gals from the series Girls, who are not shy to flash their luscious bushes, and Cameron Diaz, who devotes a whole chapter – In Praise of Pubes – to our foliage in her best-selling book The Body Book: The Law of Hunger, the Science of Strength, and Other Ways to Love Your Amazing Body.

She says it’s a personal choice, but urges women not to do anything drastic and permanent like laser hair removal, as pubic hair has a purpose and, as quoted on Metro.co.uk, ‘Forever is forever and when we make those choices for our body we have to live with them forever.’

But my favourite has to be American Apparel store’s Valentine’s Day 2014 lingerie campaign, which is so sensual (below).

Interviewed about the window by Elle.com, a representative said: ‘American Apparel is a company that celebrates natural beauty… We created it to invite passersby to explore the idea of what is ‘sexy’ and consider their comfort with the natural female form.’

American Apparel

While the bush is a bit too untamed for my personal taste (I’d trim that hedge a little), it makes a no-nonsense statement about the beauty of being a woman.

There’s something unsubtle about the full-frontal stripped pudendum, which reflects the brashness of the modern aesthetic.

It’s always been my opinion that it’s far more sensual to unveil the gift slowly, a bit like Salome…

ELSA:

Ha ha ha. Ek is dit hartlik met jou eens, Daniela! Dit gee nogal ‘n heel nuwe perspektief op die lekker Afrikaanse skelwoord “boslanser”. Hier is een vir jou om op te soek! 🙂

Laaste woord:

Daar is natuurlik ook heel geldige mediese redes vir party van die vaginale verjonging- en verfraaiingsprosedures waarvan ek hierbo skryf.

Ek het pas ‘n artikel hieroor in die jongste Longevity Magazine (nou op die rak) gedoen, met die klem op die werklike behoefte wat dit vervul vir vroue met spesifieke probleme.

Lees dit gerus!

Longevity article

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