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Diversity of Vulvas

June 4, 2009

This past Sunday, I was reading PostSecret and came across a secret about a woman’s feelings of shame over her hanging labia. It struck me as very similar to the feelings I had before I started this website. In response to the postcard, someone contributed a link to a post all about the diversity of labia, complete with illustrations (purely educational, but graphic).

I wanted to share this with you all because – just as with mama bellies – I feel like the more images we see of normal diversity, the less fear and discomfort we will have with ourselves if our bodies happen to fall outside of what we, as individuals, feel must be normal.

View the link, share your feedback here, and then pass it along to as many women and men as you can! We need to show the world what normal is.

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9 Responses to “Diversity of Vulvas”

  1. Sarah Says:
    June 4th, 2009 at 9:09 am

    In the scheme of things, these issues with our bodies are so petty. There is no “normal” because everyone is different. Peoples bodies are so different and that’s what makes humans so wonderful! I think that women need to embrace each others bodies and stop propelling the idiotic ideals of society.

  2. Nikki Says:
    June 4th, 2009 at 12:28 pm

    I love the illustrations. Call me crazy, but once you get past the idea of seeing just female anatomy, you start to see wings and sea creatures. But maybe it’s the artist in me.

    I think it’s good to see differences, because like Sara said, “There is no ‘normal’”. We get caught up in what is considered popular and want to emulate that. Like when women want bigger breasts because they feel that’s what the majority of men are attracted to. But there are men out there who like butts, legs, stomachs and backs. Women have to realize there is a man, or woman, out there who is going to be attracted to your body; not Barbie’s.

  3. Jennifer Says:
    June 4th, 2009 at 2:04 pm

    Great post. I’ve been guilty of it too, but it almost makes me mad that women let what they see in porn, what they hear from some inexperienced guy, etc, affect the way they feel about their body parts. We all talk about our boobs, butt, stomach, etc, but I think a lot of women are insecure about what they look like “down there” and what guys think. Men who have been w/ more than one woman, and who haven’t just spent their time watching/looking at porn mags, know that women are different down there…if they even take the time to look anyway! And I read that many women in the adult ent industry have had surgery, mutilating themselves down there to fit an ideal that has been forced upon us by men/media/even ourselves. So silly. Thanks for the link. Hopefully more women will feel better about themselves after checking it out.

  4. I-dra Says:
    June 4th, 2009 at 9:38 pm

    as a longtime Etsy member, I have discovered – and fallen in love with – http://QuiteCntrary.etsy.com & http://VulvaLoveLovely.etsy.com
    two remarkable shops that dare to celebrate the diversity of the most intimate female parts. I had always felt self-conscious about my extra-long inner labia, but have made total peace with them, especially since becoming more immersed in the world of midwifery & birth.

  5. Mama Says:
    June 4th, 2009 at 11:28 pm

    I’ve actually never heard of people being ashamed or embarrassed about their labia or vagina until recently, in the last few years, since I’ve been online and on mommy forums and such. It really is beyond me, honestly. We’re all so different. Comparing our sexual organs really is odd to me. I hope that did not offend anyone!!! It’s just new to me, I guess.

  6. mia Says:
    June 4th, 2009 at 11:47 pm

    Oh, so, I forgot to mention this to you at any point today but I just remembered – I have been a crazy huge fan of Betty Dodson and what she does since my (English, Episcopalian, you tell me) mother bought me a book about 70s pop culture with a story entitled “I Flunked Masturbation Class” about her workshops. After viewing the illustrations, I excitedly explained this whole notion of her work and workshops and the drawings to my geeky physicist boyfriend today on our way to the zoo – and he stared at me blank faced for a few moments. When I prodded him to answer me, he replied, cautiously, “I, too, am concerned with the perception of women.. about their… labia? And… uh… I love you?” HA.

  7. Bonnie (SOAM) Says:
    June 5th, 2009 at 9:01 am

    Mama – me, too! This whole thing has really surprised me and, frankly, I am glad I missed out on that stress – I’m glad I learned about it at this phase in my life where I can brush it off as just another way to keep women controlled by fears. I am also glad there are people out there trying to fix this.

  8. Jennifer Says:
    June 5th, 2009 at 10:58 am

    Bonnie and Mama, it seems to be a new thing, from the past few years. I’ve heard vulgar comments coming from younger men about this body part…not sure if it’s because w/ all the brazilian waxes, etc, girls are more aware of what they look like down there, or because of SOME young men who act like idiots about this body part. But I’ve definitely heard more about it the past few years. I never thought anything of it before then…so glad I got to miss out on that insecurity when I was still dating.

  9. Ashley Says:
    April 23rd, 2012 at 8:07 pm

    The illustrations were great, it helps me feel better about myself! I hate women are expected to look a “certain” way so their “perfect.” I always feel self-conscious about my body parts down there because it doesn’t look exactly how pornstars look and most men seem to like that the most, which makes me feel bad because I have a longer-inner labia. But this illustration and website has made me feel so much more confident about myself and it makes me feel not so alone!

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