Recently, while watching a skit by an actor who goes by the name Bigg Jah, it took me a hot minute to realize that it was basically a long commercial for a manscaper (clever…very clever, my man). The first thing that came to my mind is, I really dig the fact that more and more Black men are speaking up about self-care and grooming (very dope). The second thing I thought was, I wonder what the best "womenscapers" are. (I found a list of 'em here.) Then, as my mind began to wander even more, I wondered if, like virtually everything in life, did pubic hair actually have annual trends. Yep. It does.
If you're like a friend of mine who basically goes by the motto, "I don't care what the pubic hair trends are because I Nair mine off and go about my business", I hear you. It's your cooty-cat; do what you will.
But I do think that it should go on record that pubic hair does exist for a reason—and a purpose. Mostly, it's there to protect our vaginas from unwanted bacteria (and pathogens and lint), plus it can shield us from getting tiny abrasions during sex; abrasions that could make the transmission of STDs easier to receive from our partner (if they happen to have one and don't know it). Then there's a perk that a lot of people either forget or don't know about—pubic hair traps in pheromones; the kind of pheromones that make men and women, well, hornier.
Even though pubic hair can be a bit of a nuisance at times, I know many men who absolutely prefer women who have at least a little something down there. "I want to feel like I'm having sex with a grown ass woman, not a little girl" is the rationale that I typically hear. Still, that doesn't automatically mean that you have to go all 1970s bush on 'em. There are some trends that are cute, creative and pretty easy to maintain if you'd rather do your "ladyscaping" from the comfort and privacy of your own home.
Let's look into a few.
What Are the Current Trends Down There?
As far as trends go, this is what several sources revealed will be big in the year of our Lord, 2020:
The Bermuda Triangle. If you want your vagina to look like it's past puberty and you don't want to endure the pain of going completely bald (which is technically called The Brazilian in spas and salons), a happy medium is The Bermuda Triangle. It's when all of the hair but a triangle that points to your actual lips is removed. A lot of women like it because it's ideal during the summer season when you want some hair, but you don't want anything close to your bikini line.
The Five o'clock Shadow. I'm thinking this is pretty self-explanatory, but just to be on the safe side, it's when you've got a little more than stubble down there. The main thing to remember with this is the clean up the "outlining areas" like right where your bikini line hits. Oh, and in order to pull this one off, you'll probably need to shave/trim on a weekly basis.
The Martini Glass. One more. If you've never heard of The Martini Glass before, it's like a hybrid of The Bermuda Triangle and The Landing Strip (you know, when there's only one thin line of hair that runs down to where your vaginal lips are). What you do is you start off making a triangle, but right when you get to the "fattest" or "fleshiest" part of your vulva, you narrow the triangle into a line so that it literally ends up looking like—ta-da!---a martini glass (drink up, fellas!).
How to Properly Care for Your Pubic Hair
Trimming your pubic hair is only one part of maintaining it. There are a few pampering tips that you should apply on a weekly basis as well.
Exfoliate. There are two (main) reasons why exfoliating your pubic hair is a good thing to do. First, it can help to remove dead skin cells and keep your pores around your vaginal region clean and clear. Secondly, it can loosen up your hairs before you shave so that you don't end up with bumps or unsightly ingrown hairs. The most effective way to exfoliate your pubic hair is to either dry brush before taking a bath or shower or to wash your pubes with a pair of exfoliating bath gloves.
Condition. Tell the truth and shame the devil. When's the last time that you intentionally conditioned your pubic hair? It might seem like a strange thing to do but think about it—all hair feels better after it's been conditioned. Plus, hopefully, you've got someone spending a little time down there. Don't you want those hairs to feel silky soft for him? While I don't recommend slathering on the conditioner that you use for your head (the chemicals may be a bit much), putting a few drops of jojoba oil into your bathwater is an awesome way to get—and keep—your pubic hair feeling pretty wonderful. You can back that up with a little sweet almond or grapeseed oil once you get out of the tub if you want your pubes to feel extra smooth.
Soften. In order to pull off some of those trends that I mentioned, never shave while your pubic hair is dry. Always dampen it with warm water (you can use a spray bottle if you'd like) and apply some shaving cream. If you're worried that the cream could irritate your actual vulva (the external part of your vagina), clitoris or vagina, you can nix a lot of the extra chemicals by making your own. Click here and here for some easy to make recipes.
Shave. The main thing to remember when it comes to shaving is your razor needs to glide along the grain of your pubic hair, not against it. The reason why a lot of us end up with bumps and irritation down there is because we overlook this golden rule.
Dye (if you'd like). I don't know if it's TMI or not. We're all grown so, to me, it's whatever. Although I am not bald or "trendy", the main thing that motivates me to keep my own pubic hair trimmed very low is the older I get, the more grey hairs want to pop up and totally wreck my mood. If you can totally relate but you want a little more hair sans any grey, you can always dye your pubic hair. I'd avoid the standard hair dye box kits, if I were you. Instead, go with a brand that is specifically designed for your pubes. Betty Beauty is a pretty popular one.
Leave fragrance alone. Our vaginas are supposed to have a pH balance somewhere between 3.8-4.5 (which is somewhat acidic). When it's higher than this, that can lead to a breeding ground for not-so-good bacteria to thrive. Things like sperm, antibiotics, medication, douching and even our menstrual cycles can throw our pH off. Know what else can? Chemicals and scented products. That's why, it really is best, to leave all of the perfumes 'n stuff alone. If you want to feel a little extra fresh, check out "Love On Yourself With These 7 All-Natural DIY Vaginal Washes". In the meantime, always remember that your vagina—and the pubic hair that covers it—isn't supposed to smell like a bed of roses. A healthy vagina has a distinct scent and men love it. So, don't overdo it, OK? When it comes to caring for your vulva and your pubic hair, the "less is more" approach is always best. Always.
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- Pubic Hair: Care, Styles, Removal & Trends | WHO Magazine ›
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- To Go Bare Down There? - The New York Times ›
Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
How We Met is a series where xoNecole talks love and relationships with real-life couples. We learn how they met, how like turned into love, and how they make their love work.
I’m willing to bet that this is not the first time you’ve seen this couple. Dalen Spratt is a television producer, owner of a tailored men's suit line, and creator of Ghost Brothers: Haunted Houseguests, which is currently streaming on Destination America. Stacey Spratt is also a serial entrepreneur, focusing mostly on events and the nonprofit world, and she is the owner of two award-winning craft beer bars called Harlem Hops. But their accolades are not what united them.
The couple met years ago at their alma mater, Clark Atlanta University, when they were still working to create the life they have now, and if you had told them then that they’d eventually tie the knot, the pair probably would’ve laughed in your face.
Today, they’re new parents, flourishing in their careers, and each others’ “teammates.” When desiring love, Dalen recommends not looking to other couples for advice. And Stacey advises staying true to what you want. “Don’t put age or limitations on love and children. If God could do it for me, why can’t he do it for you?”
Here's How We Met.
How did you meet?
Dalen: We met in 2005 when she was advising the Greek sororities and fraternities in college. She was old as hell in college, and I was a young buck (laughs). Everybody had a crush on her, but I didn’t think much of it. Then, in 2007, we were in the same grad school class, but she still wasn’t trying to see me then either. I had to catch her five years ago; I was very patient.
Stacey: Yeah, everybody in our grad school class called him Young, Fresh to Death because he was always dressed in B-school (what CAU affectionately refers to as business major classes), and we’d just wear sweatpants (laughs).
So, I know Dalen was always attracted to you. But what about you? Did your attraction to him develop over time?
Stacey: So 2006-2008 – all the years went by. I don’t think we were really thinking about each other at all back then. Years later, I had an event in Dallas, and I booked him to be a speaker. Then, a few years ago, Dalen posted a photo of him on Instagram, and I slid in his DMs. I remembered him being so young and handsome, and I’m like, I should hook him up with my younger cousin. His response was: "If you’re not hooking me up with you, no thank you." But I still thought he was too young at the time, and he started pulling receipts. Taraji P. Henson was dating someone young at the time, Gabrielle Union–
Dalen: First of all, I didn’t do that. You did that.
Stacey: Okay, I did. I thought he was a cutie pie, but that age thing was on my mind!
"Dalen posted a photo of him on Instagram, and I slid in his DMs. I remembered him being so young and handsome, and I’m like, I should hook him up with my younger cousin. His response was: 'If you’re not hooking me up with you, no thank you.'"
Talk to me about the first date. How did he change your mind?
Stacey: Our first date was at Tin Lizzy's in Atlanta. During that time, he was living in Dallas, so it was long-distance. But he came into town, and we just had a good time. We talked a lot, which we still do. It wasn’t anything fantastic.
Dalen: Don’t downplay our first date.
Then, walk me through your courtship. How did you get to the next level? What was that conversation like?
Stacey: I think he knew at age 43 or 44 I wasn’t playing around. But also, I think it just naturally progressed.
Dalen: Yeah, it just happened naturally. And I’m going to be honest, I don’t think initially either one of us thought it would be as serious as it was. She thought I was too young and I wasn’t ready for marriage, kids, and all that. I think we both thought we were just hanging out. But after spending so much time together, a lot of stuff started happening. Like, she had to have surgery early on. It wasn’t just time together; it was intimate time. Next thing we know, we just never left each other. That’s why we still don’t have an anniversary date because we never really asked.
"It wasn't just time together; it was intimate time. Next thing we know, we just never left each other. That's why we still don't have an anniversary date because we never really asked."
What made you want to commit to each other?
Dalen: The moment I knew Stacey was for me was from a phone call. I don’t really like talking on the phone, and I can be really blunt sometimes. But we were talking, and I said, ‘I don’t really feel like talking anymore.’ And she was just like, okay, and hung up. I wasn’t trying to be rude, and she understood that. It sounds bad, but that’s how I knew she just got me. I felt like she could get my random awkward moments, and she does to this day.
Stacey: For me, I liked him as a person. Even when times get rough and tough, I could still like him as a human. He is my best friend. We have time. We laugh until we cry, and it’s just always like that. Even when we get pissed at each other, something happens, and we fix it. Also, how he treats his mother. That’s a momma’s boy, but I’m a daddy’s girl – so I get it. I know how I want to be treated, and I see how he is with her and that’s beautiful.
What are some important lessons you’ve learned about yourself through loving your partner in this relationship?
Dalen: I grew up an only child and she grew up with siblings. So, when you have someone who is used to doing things by themselves, there is definitely a learning curve when you get into a serious relationship. It’s funny now, but it was definitely a process.
Stacey: I agree – definitely the only child thing. There’s times I look at him like, did you ever live with anyone else? That comes from being momma's baby, too. I have to say, my “mother-in-love” spoiled him. But also with Axel (their daughter), that brings another level of patience.
Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images
What was the biggest challenge that you had to overcome together?
Dalen: We’ve gone through a lot within the years we’ve been together. We suffered two miscarriages – I’d say that’s the biggest.
Stacey: Having those miscarriages and trying to understand what’s next and what our options are was a lot. I had two myomectomies (fibroid surgeries), and he supported me through that time. Also, still, it was on my mind that he’s eight years younger than me. I was wondering if I can’t carry [a child] what that looks like for us. We had very real conversations pretty early in our relationship.
"Having those miscarriages and trying to understand what’s next and what our options are was a lot. I had two myomectomies (fibroid surgeries), and he supported me through that time. Also, still, it was on my mind that he’s eight years younger than me."
What do you fight the most about?
Dalen: Nagging. Stacey nags; she’s a complainer. She’s that momma that will look in a room and just hunt for something to complain about. Like, I’m worried for Axel when she's in high school.
Stacey: It’s because I like things to be in place. He leaves stuff all over the place. I can tell where he’s been in the house because something is left around. So he says I’m nagging – but it’s like, just get your stuff.
What are your love languages?
Dalen: Stacey is gifts all day.
Dalen: We’ve talked about this. xoNecole is about to cause problems in our home (laughs).
Stacey: Obviously I love you. *thinks again* It’s words of affirmation.
Dalen: That’s it.
What’s your favorite thing about each other?
Dalen: I’ve always respected her business-mindedness. That may sound superficial, but it’s not because I’ve never been with someone who thinks like me. It’s one of my most treasured things about her. I remember one day, I was just running through ideas with her, and each time Stacey had a suggestion on how I could make it better. It’s just very comforting. She takes whatever I’m doing and elevates it – including me.
Stacey: I love Dalen’s hustle and creativity. He’s been on multiple shows, and he continues to create, produce, and reinvent himself and the product he’s putting out. I love that we can create together and bounce things off each other. Even though we may be in different arenas, there’s nothing he can’t offer me great advice about. I love that drive.
Finally, how did you know it was love?
Dalen: Well – she said it – first. (laughs)
Stacey: And he looked at me and smiled! He didn’t say it back. We were on a trip, out of the country.
Dalen: We were arguing when she said it, and she just threw it out.
Stacey: But we continue to do that. We’ve spent holidays and everything outside of the country.
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Nothing beats the “Sunday Scaries” quite like a Sunday reset tailored to your needs. While the weekend never quite feels long enough to recoup from all of life's demands and responsibilities, making the most of the 48 hours we have to gear up for the week ahead is a self-care practice that every woman can benefit from.
How To Do a Sunday Reset Routine
The beauty of a Sunday reset is that it’s something you can define for yourself. On a personal level, only we know the tasks, projects, workload, and duties that demanded our attention during the week prior, so how we choose to recharge may look different for everyone. Some may feel the need to tackle weekend chores or run a few errands, while others could find that an hours-long binging spree of their favorite TV show or simply doing nothing, can do the heart some good.
Resetting your time, space, and mind over the weekend is all about listening to your body and honoring your needs. When you pause and reflect on what will make you feel the most productive, you gradually discover what a successful Sunday reset looks and feels like for you. By taking some time to plan and reflect, you allow yourself to approach the new week from a place of ease.
How To Build the Best Sunday Reset Routine
But what kind of reset could be right for you? Let’s consider the following: are there things you could scratch off your to-do list to put your mind at ease? Did this week drain you and now you need to catch up on rest? Are you looking to get ahead of a demanding week? If you’ve found yourself agreeing with at least one of these scenarios, we’ve put together a couple of tips to inspire your next Sunday reset routine needs.
The Sunday reset routine for the woman who thrives on productivity:
Hey goal-getter! For you, a typical Sunday reset looks like planning and execution. The weekend is a chance for you to catch up on all the chores and tasks that your hectic weekday schedule didn’t allow for. When planning your Sunday reset, to-do lists are your best friend. Lean on your list to stay organized and keep track of the stores you need to visit, meals to prep, and house chores to tidy up in order for you to feel like your most accomplished and productive self.
Be sure to give yourself some grace if you don’t hit everything on your list, and be sure to reward yourself for what you were able to carry out — because either way, you deserve it.
The Sunday reset routine for the woman who needs some TLC:
David Espejo/Getty Images
Self-care queens, we see you. And we know that your Sundays are sacred. You are intentional about your Sunday resets because you know that you can’t pour from an empty cup. In your case, resets are all about taking time to reflect and set your intentions for the week ahead — which can show up in many forms. From journaling and reading a new book to taking a long walk and ordering in your favorite meal, you don’t play when it comes to the power of self-nourishment.
Take a few minutes to look back on the previous week and reflect on what went well and what didn't. Think about what you accomplished, what you could have done better, and what you learned so you can approach the week with a clear mind and heart.
The Sunday reset routine for the woman who desires to do absolutely nothing:
I know you’re used to high-achieving and tackling your goals, but let me tell you something: rest is productive. You’ve spent the last five days hustling, killing your projects, and showing up for the people in your life, but now it’s time to take a moment to simply be. No to-do lists, no errands to run, no socializing — you deserve time to zone out and reconnect with yourself in solitude.
Sleep in. Watch scandalous reality TV. Get lost in your thoughts. You’re not lazy for spending time alone and letting the laundry pile up; we know you’ll get to that later. This Sunday reset is about taking time to center yourself in the present moment, you’ll be back on the grind on Monday, but Sunday is all about you.
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Originally published on March 4, 2023