I learned a new term this weekend: A merkin. Does everybody know what this is? I didn’t. A merkin, as reported to me by an actress friend who was asked to don one, is a fake bush. In the era of Brazilians, landing strips, and even, lord help us, Vajazzling, I suppose a big bush is harder to come by. In fact, I just read about the term on Wikipedia and found out that Kate Winslet purportedly wore one in The Reader. Apparently she sports a landing strip most of the time. And yes, it’s absurd that I can google Kate Winslet’s bush. Alas, this is the world we live in.
In the end, my friend was able to escape the merkin, which is applied hair by hair (eeks!), because her pubes grew to an acceptable length for the role. We both went on to disclose that our nether region styles have grown (or not grown, as it were) scantier over the years. And we both attribute our barer choices to porn culture and a certain amount of bush pressure (i.e. we were both told by men at one point that we could, ahem, use a trim). While at the time this led to some shamed waxing and references to chemo pussy (my term–and I know, sorry, mildly offensive), we both now prefer barer looks of our own volition. I also personally take comfort in the fact that the man I chose to marry, who is NOT the aforementioned gentleman, is a fan of all nether region styles. However, the bare-all stance of mainstream porn definitely leads to more intimate comparisons and in my case, when the huz-to-be was jetting off to porn sets, some heated labia discussion. I will save that for another post.
For the meantime, I’m left contemplating if, like all fashion choices, the full bush will come back around. Will actresses in twenty years be wearing bald patches in nude scenes from our generation? Hmmm… deep thoughts.