As women, we are taught to dislike a lot of things about ourselves on a daily basis—we’re not thin enough, our hair isn’t shiny enough, our teeth aren’t white enough, our complexion isn’t luminous enough, and if we’re over twenty-five, then we’ve got to watch out for turkey neck and cleavage wrinkles. But we presumed that for the most part, the negative messaging hadn’t reached our private parts; by and large, we’re still cool with our vaginas. Right? Wrong.
The Perfect Vagina, a shocking and fascinating film by Heather Leach and Lisa Rogers, explores the rising demand for labiaplasties—the clipping of the labia minora to give it a more “tucked-in” appearance. It is the fastest-growing vaginal cosmetic surgery in the U.K. and the number of requests for the procedure has doubled over a five-year period. Leach and Rogers take a long, hard look at why so many women are going under the knife and how this notion of a standard-looking, or “normal” vagina even came into being. The main culprit propagating this “perfect vagina” insecurity, according to the film, is the porn industry, which typically showcases “fannies” (this is Britain, remember) that look pre-pubescent (hairless, tight, and tucked-in) rather than adult woman vaginas, which come in so many different shapes and sizes that the very notion of a normal one is laughable. The moral of the story? There is no such thing as a perfect vagina; the sooner we can debunk this myth and learn to love the ones we’ve got, the better off we’ll be. Watch the whole movie above and let us know your thoughts.