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I have seen literally hundreds of vaginas, and I have something to say about shaggy pubes. Before you think me a freak in the sheets, let me explain. About seven years ago, I worked as a licensed aesthetician and laser hair removal technician. I have come face-to-vag with hundreds of vaginas and literal assholes in my lifetime.

Gather round friends, it’s time to talk about pubes. (I’ve always wanted to use that icebreaker at a party!) From my hands-on experience, I think I have some profound pubic wisdom to share with the world. It’s a brand-new year, and it’s time to come to terms with unruly pubic hair:

1.    Do trust the professionals.

It can be intimidating to go to a waxer for the first time, but they know what they’re doing. An objective, critical eye may be just what you need to bonsai that bush.

Here’s an insider tip to calm your nerves: If you’re really, really scared about spreading your legs for the sake of grooming, have a drink or two and get a friend to drive you to your appointment. Just don’t overdo it, and keep your dranking to yourself because some aestheticians may refuse service.

2.    Don’t forget that your pubes need love too.

This may seem totally batty, but trust me on this one. Pretty pubes make for higher self-esteem. If you’re feeling down in the dumps, your pubes are probably feeling it too. A new haircut may be just what your crotch needs to feel like your best self again—and put that extra pep in your step.

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(Image: funnyjunk.com)

3.    Do what YOU like.

There are no rules in the world of pubes, although pubic preference can be a touchy subject. I’m just going to lay my cards on the table—I prefer the full Hollywood wax (totally bare), or the Hairless Kitty, as I like to call it. That’s what I like, so that’s how my lady parts are going to look—enough said.

4.    Don’t act your age.

Age is nothing but a number in the world of pubic art. To prove this point, I have a story to share. Years ago, I was waxing a middle-aged woman. All of the sudden, she got all awkward and asked if she could ask me a question. I assumed she was going to ask something benign, like if I waxed myself (many people asked that). Instead, she stammered and said, “Uh… How old does my vagina look?”

I had no effing clue what to say to that. I’m really bad at guessing an actual person’s age, let alone a vagina’s age. (Is it like counting the rings on a tree trunk?) I went with a safe bet, “Your vagina looks 30!” It must have been the right answer because it put a smile on her face. Moral of the story: No one cares how old your vagina looks. Your pubes, your choice!

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(Image: troll.me)

5.    Do get a partner in crime.

This applies to all pregnant women. If you’re in your third trimester, don’t forget about what’s going on downstairs! I booked a wax 3 weeks before my due date in the hopes that my hairless lady business would become an aerodynamic tunnel, and the baby would slip right out. If you don’t feel comfortable going to an aesthetician, at the very least, ask a friend or partner for help. (Although, take advice from Maria and proceed with caution.)

I know OBs and midwives have probably seen every kind of vagina under the sun and may claim to “care less” about a bushy bush, but it’s kind of like brushing your teeth before you go to the dentist. Just do it.

6.    Don’t forget common courtesy.

All I will say is that I had a client come in sweating profusely and apologize after explaining that she jogged to the appointment. Before she was scheduled to get a bikini wax. I’ll just let that sink in for a minute.

7.    Do get fancy for special occasions.

One word: vajazzle (said with JAZZ HANDS). I’m thinking anniversaries, graduations, labor and delivery, the works. Unfortunately, vajazzling became popular after I finished working as an aesthetician, so I never got the opportunity to learn the crotchly jewel art. But nothing says welcome to the world like vajazzling your newborn child’s name on your lady bits before giving birth!

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8.    Finally, don’t drink and wax alone.

It may seem like a perfectly reasonable—even good—idea to have a few drinks and use a home waxing kit. I can tell you from personal experience that this hurts so much more than actual labor, and you’ll end up with waxy bits of plastic hanging from your pubes. Worse, you may pass out from the pain, and when your partner or roommate finds you, they’ll be some ‘splaining to do…

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(Image: Julia Sonenshein) **PS: For all of you pearl clutchers, the top image isn’t really pubic hair, it’s actually some dude’s beard.