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Women's Health

There is one milestone in a woman’s life that may not get talked about a lot, but it remains firm in our memory — it’s the first time that we notice that we’ve got a gray pubic hair. When I tell you that there’s nothing like it — Lawd, have mercy! I mean, even more than seeing the first gray hair on our head, there is something that is far more “What TF is going on?” about a gray pubic hair that…I’ll just say that if it hasn’t happened to you, just wait until it does.

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I was today years old when I learned the 'why' behind getting a pap smear. I always used to look at it as one of my annuals that I booked an appointment for, propped up my legs, braced for the discomfort of the speculum, and just did. I knew it was for my health but for some reason, it never clicked for me that a pap smear had everything to do with being preventative and was mostly about your cervix. Even as a 31-year-old who had a LEEP procedure done to remove precancerous cells nearly a decade ago, the dots never totally connected for me that ‘pap smear’ is to the cervix and cervical cancer as ‘mammogram’ is to breasts and breast cancer. Don’t come for me, but I was simply doing what I was ‘supposed’ to do without thinking of the bigger picture as it relates to my health and preventative measures like annual pap smears.

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The strong Black woman trope has had us in a chokehold for years but a new movement has been overtaking our social media feeds as the cure, the soft life. Since the soft life has become a trending topic, there have been many misconceptions about the term and what it truly means to live softly. The founder of Black Girl's Healing House, Delilah Antionette, promotes this innovative way of thinking in her popular Facebook group and even sees it as a form of wellness.

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With more than 84% of women experiencing painful periods, there’s no wonder why “that time of the month” is filled with negative connotations. As someone who doesn’t fall into the 84% percent noted in that study, I can still attest to factors like age, stress, and lifestyle affecting my menstrual cycle and the way I experience my periods. Gone are the days when my symptoms peaked at salty and sweet cravings, and in its wake, I’ve been introduced to cramping, low estrogen levels, and a heavier flow than I’ve experienced in all my years of having a period. Where I used to look at my periods as a time of the month when was indifferent, I am now feeling the effects and I can only imagine how the other 84% of women reporting period pain go through (more power to y’all, for real).

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We (the collective) get a lot of shit about how women ought to smell "down there." Hell, some of it comes from within — the idea that we’re supposed to smell like buttercups and roses. When in reality, pussy has a smell and it’s not "sweet." But we’re not here to talk about this — not quite, that is. We’re here to discuss the causes of abnormal smells that may be a bit pungent to ourselves or even others. Leave it to Nick Cannon to spark the dialogue here after he made comments on Lip Service, a podcast hosted by Angela Yee, about whether or not women know when they’re “stinkin’ up the room” or nah.

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“Bad bitches have bad days too.” When I heard thee Hot Girl Coach Megan Thee Stallion spit this indisputable fact on “Anxiety,” the eleventh track of her new album Traumazine, I had to pause for a moment.

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