May 16 2019
Labiaplasty is surgery on the inner and outer lips of the vulva. It is often discussed in the media in a narrative similar to plastic surgery, where we think that women are getting Labiaplasty because they want a nice-looking or a “perfect” vulva that’s similar to what we see in porn. This might be the reason for some women, but according to recent research, many women have Labiaplasty for reasons others than aesthetics. Some do it because over time, their labia have elongated and are causing physical discomfort. For example, they might experience tugging during intercourse, find tight pants uncomfortable, experience twisting of the labia, and are nervous that their labia could become exposed in bathing suits. These physical factors can then impact how a woman feels in her body – she may feel more self-conscious or less attractive and less able to feel intimate with their partner.
While this recent research was done within small groups of women, it does show that the Labiaplasty procedure had a positive impact on their physical comfort, self esteem, sexual confidence and their sexual enjoyment. Many women who are choosing to have the surgery are not striving for the perfect vulva – they’re striving to make their lives easier, more comfortable and to feel better. Ultimately, it comes down to the individual woman’s reasons for wanting this surgery. And as with any elective surgery, informed consent and autonomy are important!Erin Chen
18 April 2019