It’s the trend of the hour, the controversial artwork on everyone’s lips – no pun intended. For months I’ve managed to laugh it off and look the other way, but when your Gay Best Friend; someone who finds female genitalia physically repulsive, refers to it as ‘sexy’… I gave in. The Vajazzle; made famous by one of the most irritatingly addictive reality series on recent television – ‘The Only Way is Essex’ – car crash television that reels you in with the ability to both disgust and allure you at once. For anyone living in a cave for the last 18 months, a Vajazzle is defined by urban dictionary as “to give the female genitals a sparkly makeover with crystals so as to enhance their appearance”.
With 54% of women saying they now want a Vajazzle, it seemed only fitting that I saw what all the fuss was about. For hundreds of years women have worn make-up, shaved their legs and generally put our bodies through unthinkable things in the name of beauty; always walking the tightrope of whether we go through hell to making ourselves feel great… versus beautifying ourselves for men. Jennifer Love-Hewitt, for example, claimed her Vajazzle was to combat an emotional break-up; a way to make herself feel sexy again. But where does the local girl fit into this? Where are the men that like this inexplicable new trend? And who are the women who buy into it?
Are Vajazzles classy or cringey?
I have to say, at first I couldn’t really enter into the spirit of Vajazzling, I couldn’t. I was already cringing at having the standard salon conversation; “so are you up to anything nice this weekend” whilst having crystals glued onto my most intimate regions on a cold Monday lunch hour. Instead I went to my old childhood haunt; Claire’s Accessories, to buy cheap crystal tattoos. That night, before I knew it I was half a bottle of wine down and manically sticking them to myself with nail glue. Through my tipsy haze It seemed I had done a pretty good job of ‘enhancing’ my girly bits – maybe I got a little carried away with the line of glitter eyeliner here and the smudge of lip stain there. The good feeling quickly faded so, a whole pack of face wipes and an hour of scrubbing later, I definitely felt more sleazy than sexy. Passing the lip stain (that still wouldn’t budge) off as a waxing rash – I vowed never to indulge in DIY again.
The second attempt I had no choice but to embrace. Booking myself in was a lot less embarrassing than I imagined. Don’t get me wrong, I was still having an awkward conversation with someone who was delicately placing gems onto my crotch, but nevertheless not as quite bad as I imagined. When I left, I have to be honest, I felt good. I felt a spring in my step, and walking home through the centre of town I felt like I knew a secret nobody else did, but I have to say, the feeling of class never entered the equation. At the big reveal to my boyfriend I felt the element of sleaze (his fit of laughter probably didn’t help) but even prior to that there was a certain element of cringe involved. One thing I will say is that the crystals get everywhere – not straight away, the salons are too professional for that – but even weeks later I found them in the sheets, the bath, even inexplicably in the kitchen sink.
So why has this trend taken off? I admit I felt an element of excitement, but nothing I can’t get from a new pair of heels. Did the male race get together and decided they only wanted skinny women with huge tits and Vajazzled crotches – or did women get sick of perfect skin, nails and hair and just want another, more elaborate, reason to visit the salon? Are Vajazzles for the ‘new woman’, or are we buying into, yet another, media-born craze; feeling inadequate if we are anything different than the celebrities that infiltrate the message of every article we read?
Personally, I can’t see the attraction, but as they say; beauty is always in the eye of the beholder – and whatever the media impose upon us, that is one fact that, thank god, they can never change.