This Survey Reveals How People Are Really Grooming Their Body Hair (and Why)



Last summer, out of personal confusion and curiosity, I wrote a story called "So What Am I Actually Supposed to Do With My Bikini Line These Days?" Caught between my commitment to destigmatizing female body hair and my commitment to not disturbing strangers at the swimming pool with too much rogue pubic hair, I was eager to know how women in the 21st century were actually grooming down there and what motivates their choices. I didn't have the resources to conduct an empirical survey on the matter at the time, but to my good fortune, I recently encountered a survey from Chicago's Advanced Dermatology that did.

The folks at this Midwestern skin health center had similar curiosities: They wanted to know how and why people of all genders arrange their body hair (from their pits to their nether regions) in 2018. "Grooming, or preening, is essential behavior to many species. From cats to birds to chimpanzees, social animals implement specific grooming behaviors to stay healthy and clean, to bond with other members of their group, or to attract a mate," the survey's authors wrote. "As a species, humans are no different, but how and why we groom ourselves is far more complex."

To discover more about women's and men's body hair habits and what influences them, the study surveyed 2000 participants. Read on to learn more about the results.