Although the popularity of labiaplasty has surged over the past few years, it is still a relatively misunderstood procedure. Before we dive into sex and labiaplasty, let’s dispel some common misconceptions.
Why Do Women Get Labiaplasty?
First of all, the public’s perception of what a woman’s vulva should look like is entirely skewed, in large part due to the porn industry’s portrayal of what an “ideal” vulva should look like. I always want to make sure my patients understand that our vaginas are not one-size-fits-all — they’re all beautiful, and the majority don’t look remotely like what the media has deemed “normal.”
Now you might be thinking, “Dr. Min, if all vaginas are beautiful, then why are you advocating a procedure that alters their appearance?” The reality is, labiaplasty isn’t just an aesthetic fix. It’s equally, if not more so, a functional procedure. Most of my patients who seek out labiaplasty do so because their labia are causing them extreme discomfort or even pain. Tight clothing (leggings, jeans, bikini bottoms, etc.), riding a bike, running, or even simply sitting may cause friction that can be extremely uncomfortable.
Regardless of what motivates a patient to explore labiaplasty, the decision to go under the procedure is often a very sensitive issue – one that a lot of women don’t even recognize how to address. Please know that there is nothing to be embarrassed about! If you’re living with discomfort or the appearance of your vulva is impacting your self-esteem, please don’t be shy! This is a far more common problem than you likely realize.
Labiaplasty and Your Sex Life
Ok, now let’s get into it – will undergoing labiaplasty impact your sex life?
The most common sex-related concern I hear from my labiaplasty patients is that they’re self-conscious about the excess skin when being intimate with their partners. With images being so readily available online, women are more aware of what other women’s anatomy looks like – more so than even just 15-20 years ago. In addition to their perception of how their labia look, my labiaplasty patients also express that they long to wear cute underwear or lingerie, which often don’t fit due to the excess skin. While I do want to stress again that there is no “normal” looking vulva, if you’re self-conscious about your labia’s appearance, don’t be afraid to do something about it.
There’s no question that undergoing labiaplasty helps boost a patient’s confidence in the bedroom. Some patients inquire if the procedure will help them physically. Whether one will experience increased sensation during sex depends on each person’s individual anatomy. If you have a lot of tissue in that area, it may cause a barrier over the clitoris. Once that tissue is removed, the sensory organs may be more exposed. From that standpoint, patients may notice that they’re more sensitive to stimulation, but this isn’t the case for everybody. I also want to make it clear that labiaplasty should not be performed for this reason alone – increased sensation could be a really nice side effect that you could experience!
How Does Labiaplasty Work?
The procedure itself is relatively quick (typically one to one-and-a-half hours), painless (most of my cases are done under local anesthesia, although patients can elect for general), and recovery is usually fast and easy as well. For those who undergo local anesthesia, they’re able to drive themselves home the day of. Some patients report that they experience a burning sensation within the first 24 hours, but icing the area and taking Tylenol typically alleviate discomfort. To help ensure that you have a speedy recovery, I recommend that patients don’t push themselves, especially during that first week. Take it easy! Try to avoid walking long distances, stay in bed as much as you can, ice regularly – avoid the gym or doing anything overly strenuous.
So how long do you have to wait before having sex? I recommend waiting six weeks. Patients also often inquire if there are any sex-related risks that might come with the procedure. There is obviously always risk with any surgical procedure, but when it comes to whether or not labiaplasty will cause you to lose sensation, it shouldn’t! If you do your research and find a reputable surgeon, this shouldn’t be an issue at all.
If you think labiaplasty is right for you, then go for it! It can be an incredibly beneficial procedure for so many women. And even if it doesn’t physically help improve your sex life, the boost in confidence surely will!
Contact Cassileth Plastic Surgery for Labiaplasty in Beverly Hills
The team of female plastic surgeons at Cassileth Plastic Surgery are highly experienced in labiaplasty surgery, and dedicated to helping women feel comfortable and confident. Contact us with any questions or to schedule a consultation.