Jess Staufenberg of the independent writes in More women think shaving pubic hair is 'hygenic' despite greater health risks:

Dr Vanessa Mackay, who is a member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said pubic hair was vital for preventing pathogens entering the vagina.

Does the research indicate pubic hair prevents pathogens from entering the vagina of woman?


According to Correlation between pubic hair grooming and STIs: results from a nationally representative probability sample Sexually Transmitted Infections 5 December 2016:

We conducted a probability survey of US residents aged 18-65 years. The survey ascertained self-reported pubic hair grooming practices, sexual behaviours and STI history. We defined extreme grooming as removal of all pubic hair more than 11 times per year and high-frequency grooming as daily/weekly trimming. Cutaneous STIs included herpes, human papillomavirus, syphilis and molluscum. Secretory STIs included gonorrhoea, chlamydia and HIV. We analysed lice separately.

After adjusting for age and lifetime sexual partners, ever having groomed was positively associated with a history of self-reported STIs (OR 1.8; 95% CI 1.4 to 2.2), including cutaneous STIs (OR 2.6; CI 1.8 to 3.7), secretory STIs (OR 1.7; CI 1.3 to 2.2) and lice (OR 1.9; CI 1.3 to 2.9). These positive associations were stronger for extreme groomers (OR 4.4; CI 2.9 to 6.8) and high-frequency groomers (OR 3.5; CI 2.3 to 5.4) with cutaneous STIs, and for non-extreme groomers (OR 2.0; CI 1.3 to 3.0) and low-frequency groomers (OR 2.0; CI 1.3 to 3.1) with lice.

In other words, removing pubic hair correlated with increased risk of sexually transmitted infections, especially sexually transmitted infections of the skin.

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    @Christian The study says there were small studies to support this, so they made this large (7580) study to confirm. See also this article about the study: nhs.uk/news/2016/12December/Pages/… – DavePhD Jan 25 '17 at 17:13
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    @user5341 lice decreased with pubic hair removal, and skin STDs increased much more than secretory. That can't all be explained by simply more partners. – DavePhD Jan 25 '17 at 17:52
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    -1 Doesn't that same study say that groomers are also more likely to have more partners, and hence more risk? – axsvl77 Jan 25 '17 at 20:37
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    That conclusion (causal link) is not supported. Shaving is correlated with more STDs, it doesn't necessarily follow that it increases them. (E.g., just drawing from the original question's point that people believe it's more hygenic, you might expect STDs to cause shaving instead, which is also consistent with the reported results). – fectin Jan 25 '17 at 20:48
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    Why not mark as duplicate since you posted the same answer before – user36688 Jan 25 '17 at 21:29

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