Shaving *down there* can be seriously intimidating – and it’s very much a personal choice. We’re going to give you the 411 so you can feel confident in your shaving endeavours.

Happy Wisdom Wednesday! Today, we’re talking about shaving body hair. If you’re loyal to The Rag (we love you), you know we have already written about shaving your legs.  Now we’re moving on to a more intimate, but equally important region – your vag. Shaving down there can be seriously intimidating, since the skin on this part of your body is extremely sensitive.

To shave or not to shave?

Should you shave your pubes? As with my leg shaving article, I’d like to preface this by saying you don’t need to shave down there if you don’t want to. Shaving any part of your body is a personal choice. Going totally bald is a relatively new trend, so you shouldn’t feel pressure to shave your private parts if you don’t want to.

If you’re into being hairless down there, we’re going to give you the 411 so you can feel confident in your shaving endeavours. And if you’d prefer to keep your crotch hair, more power to you.

Now that we’ve got that covered, let’s get started! Here’s how to properly shave your pubes – without getting bumps.

How to shave your pubic hair

1. Trim

People don’t call pubic hair a ‘bush’ for nothing. Not only does more hair collect in your nether regions, but it’s also the coarsest, thickest hair on your body. If you take a razor to this hair without trimming it first, you’ll dull your razor. You’ll also increase your chances of cutting yourself or irritating your skin, and we don’t want that!

2. Lather

Hop into the shower and lather yourself up with some soap! If you can, try to find a soap or body wash that’s fragrance-free to avoid any unwanted irritation. I also don’t recommend shaving down there unless you’re in the shower. The steam from the shower will open up your pores and provide a better shave. Again, this area of skin is extremely sensitive, so you don’t want to take any chances.

3. Shave

Time to get to business. Pull your skin taught with one hand and shave with the other. You can either use a razor or a bikini shaver.

I want to stress that when you’re shaving your privates, shave with the grain. This means you want to shave in the same direction the hair grows, not against it. I know shaving against the grain provides a closer shave – with your legs, I would say go ahead and shave against the grain, but with your vagina, you’ll most likely get razor burn if you shave against the grain.

Razor burn usually appears a few hours post shave or the next day. It consists of red, itchy bumps, which will not only be super uncomfortable, but make your crotch look like a war zone. No one wants that.

When it comes to your labia, or the “lips” of your vagina, things can get tricky. Not every vagina looks the same, so this part is different for everyone. There’s a lot of hard to reach places, which can make this part nerve-wracking. The best advice I can give here is just to try. Once you’ve done this a few times, you’ll get used to the nooks and crannies.

If you’re not comfortable shaving this part of your vagina, don’t! You can always opt just to shave your bikini line – this is a great option if you’re putting on a bathing suit and don’t want any hair to be seen.

4. Moisturize

Again, use something fragrance-free to avoid irritating this skin. I’ve heard a lot of people apply diaper rash cream to this area after shaving, which may seem weird, but it’s known to prevent razor burn.

Waxing and hair removal cream

If you’ve tried shaving with a razor and find you’re always getting razor burn, I suggest using a cream or wax instead. If you’re purchasing cream or waxing strips, read the label carefully to ensure it can be used on your bikini area, because the typical cream used for your legs may be too harsh for the skin down there.

There are tons of salons that do bikini or Brazilian waxing. A bikini wax involves removing the hair that can be seen when you’re wearing underwear or a bathing suit, while a Brazilian wax removes all the hair. I will warn you, waxing is not a walk in the park. It lasts longer than shaving with a razor and is better at preventing irritation, but waxing your bikini line can be painful. Read up about it and make sure you’re prepared to experience a little discomfort if you feel this option is better for you.