Let's get straight to the point: butt hair is perfectly normal, just like it's totally common to have hair on your legs and hair down there (aka pubic hair). While you don't really see it to believe it, most people have butt hair on the butt cheeks, in between them, or both.
Though everyone has butt hair, it's funny that hair can be so stigmatized. We long for thick, shiny hair and we're obsessed with lengthy eyelashes and on-fleek brows. But when it comes to *other* kinds of hair, we just start blushing and pretending it doesn't exist. So now that you know how common it really is, we're about to rip the bandage off and get real about everything you need to know about butt hair.
In case you're too embarrassed to ask for yourself (though you don't need to be!), we tapped board-certified dermatologist Dr. Hadley King, licensed esthetician and co-founder of SKINNEY Medspa Marisa Martino, and OB-GYNs Dr. Melisa Holmes and Dr. Jennifer Ashton for their expertise on butt hair. From how to shave butt hair safely to scientific benefits of its existence, here's everything you need to know...
Butt hair exists for a real reason.
Eyelashes, as you might know, serve the useful purpose of keeping bugs, dust, and other particles out of your eyes; armpit hair prevents your arms from chafing against your sides. But when it comes to butt hair, you might be stumped. According to Dr. King, no one knows for sure what the purpose of butt hair is, but there are several theories:
- Bodies evolve over the course of millions of years. We haven't lost our butt hair yet simply because there's no pressing reason for us to do so. "There is no significant evolutionary pressure against it," says King. Cool, right?
- We tend to have hair in areas where scent is produced, and the hair traps your own unique scent, which can make you more attractive to mates (you know, way deep in our cavemen brains).
- Butt hair provides a layer to prevent chafing between your butt cheeks when you run or walk or do whatever.
EVERYONE has butt hair.
Let's get one thing straight: EVERYONE has butt hair. Once puberty hits, hair begins to grow in all kinds of ~specific~ places (like on your underarms, legs, pubic area, face, and, yes, butt). It's 100% normal and we promise that you, your crush, and your squad all have butt hair.
Some people might have more or less hair than others, according to Dr. King, as genetics and hormones affect the distribution of body hair. But having butt hair itself is again, completely and absolutely normal.
You decide what to do with your hair.
Since having butt hair is totally natural and OK, it's your call when it comes to deciding what to do with it. You can just leave it as is and live your best life. After all, being hairless everywhere is just a weird trend that became popular for the strangest reason. "It really changed drastically when porn become more readily available online," explains Dr. Holmes, M.D., founder of Girlology.com. Just because porn might show some hairless bodies doesn't mean you need to shave everything off.
Dr. King agrees that it's absolutely fine to keep your butt hair as is. But if you'd like, you can choose to remove it, though it really depends on what you personally prefer. If you do decide to remove your hair, just make sure you're being extra careful or visiting reputable professional.
Temporary removal options
One option for removal is shaving. Now, think about how small that area with hair on your butt is and now think about how big a razor is. You need to seriously take it nice and easy to make sure your don't nick yourself (OW). "Any time you shave or wax, that hair follicle on your skin is going to be opened up," says Dr. Ashton, MD, an OB-GYN and author of The Body Scoop for Girls. "That makes it easy for bacteria to enter and cause an infection."
If you're going to shave hair off from around your butthole, just hop in the shower and clean the area with some mild soap and warm water. Then, put your leg up so that you have access to the area and very slowly shave using small strokes. Holding your skin taut with the other hand will help protect against nicks and cuts.
And, whenever you're shaving ANYTHING, be sure to get a good razor with one or two blades. It truly makes all the difference in the world.
Another temporary removal option is waxing, which pulls hair out by the roots, so this method will typically last longer than just shaving. If you're new to waxing, it might be best to leave it up to a professional.
Permanent removal options
Butt hair is easily treated with a few sessions of laser hair removal, according to Martino. "Laser hair removal is the most common and effective method for removing unwanted hair, in all areas of your body, for good," she says.
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