According to Dr. Nancy Brown, trimming and shaving pubic hair can be traced to ancient Egypt and Greece when prostitutes shaved their pubic hair for hygienic reasons and as a clear indicator of their profession. In the 1980s, trimming and shaving pubic hair gained widespread popularity with the introduction of bikini bathing suits. Modernly, trimming and shaving pubic hair is quite common and can be safely if done properly.
Decide whether trimming your pubic hair is right for you. While trimming pubic hair has become increasingly popular, there are drawbacks. Dr. Nancy Brown notes that shaving pubic hair can cause itching, razor burn, cuts, blisters or pimples, and genital infections--such as folliculitis. Moreover, keeping pubic hair neatly trimmed requires frequent, sometimes daily, trimming. Nevertheless, there are many advantages to trimming public hair. For instance, many people believe that pubic hair interferes with sexual activity. Needless to say, the choice of whether to trim your pubic hair is entirely yours.
Position the paper towel under yourself so that it can catch the trimmed hairs in order to make cleanup easier. Then position the mirror in such a way that you can see what you are doing. Finding just the right position can be tricky and will depend on your individual preferences, but make sure that you feel comfortable and stable in order to avoid cutting yourself.
Use the scissors or electric razor to cut your pubic hair. The authors at Hairchick.com recommend cutting your pubic hair in sections. For example, take a small section of hair and twirl it in your fingers. Then trim the top, and repeat for a closer cut. You may find it desirable to take small steps. In other words, don't cut your pubic hair too short at first. Rather, trim just a little and allow your body to get used to the feeling before deciding whether to go even shorter.
Shave any sections you may want shaved. Some people prefer to trim their pubic hair, while others prefer to shave it off entirely. Still others prefer to trim certain sections and shave others. In order to shave some of your pubic hair, first soak yourself in a hot bath. This will help to avoid pimples and skin irritation. Once you are dry, apply shaving cream. Then pull the skin tight with your free hand and shave without applying pressure. The Palo Alto Medical Foundation recommends using a razor with moisturizing strips if possible.
Thomas King is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law where he served as managing editor of the "Pittsburgh Journal of Environmental and Public Health Law." He currently lives in Aberdeen, Washington where he writes and practices law.