A Flock of Vulvas

Madonna straddled a mirror gazing at herself
in her 1992 book, “Sex,” writing, “Sometimes
I sit on the edge of the bed and spread my legs,
stare into the mirror and wonder what others see.”

Now singing the praises of female genital pride is
Regena Thomashauer in her book “Pussy: A Reclamation.”

After being buried under 5,000 years of “patriarchal
conditioning,” Ms. Thomashauer writes, “she is ready
to re-emerge.” Her therapeutic advice involves a
hand mirror and frequent peeks and greetings
of “Hello, gorgeous!” to the region in question.

Gloria Swanson said she and her friends
take artistically styled and composed shots.

“Being in a long-distance relationship, that’s
kind of the only way you can be intimate.
I only want my significant other to see my pictures.”

She doesn’t believe in letting it all hang out.
“If you got a little pudge, you got to work
around it and find an angle that’s flattering.”

As for grooming: “I might have a triangle or
the landing strip, just enough that it doesn’t
show through your underwear, but I actually
had a partner who asked me to grow it out and
not trim it up at one point. He was like,
‘Yeah, get the ’70s porn star on,’ and I was like,
‘all right! I’ll try it.’”

Ursula, who identifies as being part of the LGBTQ community
has been taking Vulva-selfies since she was 20.
“It’s empowering and helps you love and accept every part of your body.”

“Snapchat filters banish blemish and razor bumps,” she said,
adding that when she gets really fancy she uses Photoshop.

“My mother is a photographer — lights
and background are everything.

Sometimes filters can make the ‘v’ look shaved even
if it’s been two days and you’re stubbly.

You want your ‘v’ to look good, so whatever
light, filter, position will make your ‘v’
look best, that’s the one you should use.

I use it as a narrative, as if you’re telling a story.
It’s an aspect of that, it’s not just a vagina.”

A Bevy of Beauties

the shutters are closed

The Petals Part

The vulva is the whole female genital ‘package’ — labia, clitoris, gateway to the vagina and the opening to the urethra.

The vulva gets called lots of funny names — coochie, woo-woo, ‘down there’ — and it’s sometimes confused with the vagina.

A lot of girls are often afraid that their vulvas are deformed or that they have been stretched out, which can make them embarrassed with their body.

Petals: Journey into Self-Discovery by Nick Karras, is a collection of photographs of the vulva. Karras compares the vulva to a flower. He sees it as the most powerful part of the female anatomy.

Girls began to see a resemblance with their vulvas to a tulip or a lily, and that realization helped them feel more comfortable with themselves.

Karras said he began his project after recognizing that many women are uncomfortable with their bodies. They feel ashamed of their vulvas. He began his collection of photographs to show the beauty in the vulva that is often under-appreciated.

He’s also produced a video. It highlights negative trends that have become common including labia surgery to tighten the vulva up, emotional problems that women have with their vulva and misinformation like douching being healthy, when in reality it makes things worse.

Girls should learn that the vagina is cleaner than the mouth. Then make sure they tell their boyfriends.