More than half of gay men (51%) and 59% of gay women won’t have oral sex with a partner who has ungroomed pubic hair.
Meanwhile just a quarter of both gay men and lesbians maintain a full pubic bush.
Those are some of the leading results of a new study into America’s personal grooming habits.
Save.Health, which carried out the survey, quite rightly points out that people find all kinds of bodies sexy.
But they also found that not taking care of your personal grooming was a deal breaker for many sexual partners.
Gay guys are the most likely to trim
The researchers found 22% of gay women have shaved or waxed pubic hair. That’s over four times more than gay men – 5% of whom have no hair.
By comparison, gay men are more likely to have trimmed hair – 69% go for that look, compared to 54% of gay women.
And the numbers with a full, natural pubic bush are about the same – 24% of gay women and 26% of gay men.
Meanwhile years of exposure to female shaving adverts may have influenced straight women.
They are most likely to have no hair with 23% going fully ‘bare’. Another 61% of straight women trim while just 17% have full natural hair.
And interestingly, straight men are more likely to be fully bare than gay men. 8% of straight guys have no hair, with 61% having trimmed bushes and 31% having full hair.
The researchers didn’t produce separate figures for bisexuals or other sexualities.
Meanwhile most people of all sexual orientations believe grooming their pubic hair makes them more sexually attractive.
This is particularly true of gay women – 65% felt grooming makes the more sexy. Straight women tend to agree, with 60% feeling the same way.
Moreover, gay men are not far behind. A clear 58% think grooming makes them more attractive, compared to 51% of straight men.
Furthermore the right kind of pubic hair maintenance may boost confidence for some people.
The survey found 32% of people with no hair felt confident naked. That compares with 22% of those with a little to moderate amount of hair and 27% with full, natural hair.
In addition, a quarter of women feel under pressure to groom down there, while just 12% of men feel the same.
Grooming is about maintenance, not just having less hair
The researchers discovered that most people are actually happy if their sexual partner has a full bush. However, grooming – which includes being clean and tidy down there – is essential.
Indeed, a little over half of gay men (51%) and 59% of gay women won’t give someone oral sex if they aren’t well maintained.
Lack of pubic hair care also a deal breaker for penetrative sex for almost a third of gay women and 27% of gay men.
However, while taking care of your hair appears to be an essential for many, that doesn’t have to mean having less of it.
In fact, gay men are the most likely to be happy with full pubic hair (78%), followed by gay women at 75%. And 67% of straight women and 63% of straight men felt the same.
Again, it’s all a matter of preference, so not everyone agrees.
The researchers found that for some, a full bush is a deal breaker. Indeed, it was the most likely thing to be a deal breaker for gay women. Meanwhile gay men say that full hair, genital piercings and dyed pubes are all equally likely to see them walk.
Bushes are big business
Given all that, it’s not surprising that people invest both time and money in their personal hair care.
Regimens can include trimming, shaving, waxing and laser hair removal.
However, as the survey also found that sexual partners care about grooming for people with full bushes, it doesn’t end there. Both men and women take time out to comb and brush their hair and to apply products like oils or lotions.
Men are most likely not to invest hard cash in their pubes but 6% of people spent as much as $80 to get rid of unwanted hair.
The figures show that women who shave spend $10,000 on products during their lifetime, while a lifetime of waxing costs them $23,000.
Indeed, the global laser hair removal market was worth $587.6 million in 2018. Experts predict it will rise by roughly 16% a year until 2026.
According to our findings, women spent $34 on waxing each month, on average, and about $11 on shaving. Six percent of people reported spending as much as $80 per month to get rid of unwanted hair. Men were most likely to spend $0 on grooming treatments or supplies.
Moreover, it can be a risky business too. Another study in 2017 showed a quarter of people who groom have injured themselves at least once with their care regimen.
‘All a matter of preference’
Save.Health interviewed 1,027 sexually active people aged from 18 to 87 for their research.
The researchers conclude: ‘For some, growing out their body hair makes them feel sexy, and for others, trimming adds a boost of confidence.
‘It’s all a matter of preference.
‘If you’re afraid that a lover won’t perform for you because you choose to go natural, communicate with your partner about your grooming preferences, and ask them about theirs. Listen respectfully, and make sure they value your desires.
‘Our findings show that although most people prefer groomed pubic hair, some like it au naturale. And the natural look doesn’t have to go untended.’