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Does Removing Hair "Down There" Increase Your Risk Of STIs?

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Instagram/ Laura Callaghan

You might want to put down that razor...

Warning: after reading this you might be cutting all ties with your waxing lady completely.

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A new study from University of California - San Francisco reports that people who frequently remove their pubic hair are 75% more likely to develop a sexually transmitted infection than people who don't. This is particularly troubling considering the fact that STIs are at a record high.

The survey included over 7,000 U.S. residents 18-65, and asked about their grooming habits, sexual behavior, and STI history.

The researchers do not believe that hair removal directly leads to STIs, however, their "hypothesis is that grooming is positively related to STIs."

A potential reason for the correlation between STIs and hair removal? Shaving, waxing, and other hair removal techniques may create “epidermal microtears” which could allow transmission of bacteria or viruses more easily. Ew.

The study defined extreme grooming as removal of all pubic hair more than 11 times a year and high-frequency grooming as daily/weekly trimming; extreme groomers were found to be 28% more likely to report STIs than high frequency groomers.

Overall, the groomers tended to be younger, and more sexually active, which could also lead to the end results. As ladies, we all know that the more frequently we're cleaning up down there, the busier we're probably getting. In this study, the extreme groomers had the highest number of sexual partners than any other category of participants.

So those of you in committed relationships might not have as much to worry about. But anyone who is single and ready to mingle? Might want to rethink that next sugaring appointment.

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Be safe out there, ladies.

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