Let’s Keep Talking About Vaginas

Why did we ever stop?

Photo by Dainis Graveris/ Pexels

In 1997, the world’s largest penis museum was brought to life, or erected, if you will. If you happened to be in Reykjavik, Iceland, you could visit the Icelandic Phallological Museum and spend as long as you like looking at the world’s most eccentric display of penises and penile objects. Fab.

But where can we find the female equivalent? Well, up until a few years years ago, there simply wasn’t. This, along with the lack of a word for female masturbation in the English dictionary, makes it almost seem like our bits don’t actually exist. But, for anyone who is the owner of one, you very well know that they do.

They receive pleasure, they give pleasure, they bleed, they bring literal life into the world, so why all the secrets? Sure, lovely vaginas are flaunted in front of us in pornography, but when it comes to viewing or speaking about them outside of the male gaze, the world would rather you just kept shut. It doesn’t want to know about funny-coloured discharge or wonky labias, it doesn’t care if you love your lady garden or have a complicated relationship with it. It only wants it to exist when it’s of convenience. If it’s doing something like pushing a tampon into it or squeezing a human out of it then you and your bits can feck off. 

In a bid to dispel some of that shame many vagina owners feel as a result of this, Florence Schechter established the world’s first vagina museum in Camden Market, London, in 2017. But sadly, the playing fields are still far from levelled out. A few years back, Joe Duffy was met with many calls of concern as listeners shared their disgust at a Tampax ad – you know the ‘you’ve gotta get em’ up there girls!’ one.

Many people called the advert “vulgar” and “offensive”, showing that really, we haven’t come too far when it comes to normalising conversation around vaginas. Women have accepted the embarrassment projected onto them as their own.

So, to try and help curb this, STELLAR has asked some women how they feel about their bits, no beating around the bush. 


“I wouldn’t say there’s anything I like or dislike about my vagina but she does what she’s supposed to and that’s all that matters. I like to think of my own vagina as a whole separate entity to my body, that requires a new level of attentiveness than myself. Almost like a pet. If she has the ability to receive & give pleasure, menstruate once a month and push out an entire human being, she deserves some extra TLC. I named her Crystal, after the woman role in the film ‘Crystal Fairy & the Magical Cactus’, this way I can refer to her on different ends of the grooming scale like so; crystal fairy = clean shaven, crystal hairy = not shaven.

“I believe historically women have continually endured objectification in a way that makes us base our worth on whether we’re sexually appealing or not. This can be detrimental to youth in an age where mainstream porn is so accessible, which is teeming with photoshopped, surgically augmented and airbrushed bodies. Even though I’m aware of the inauthenticities of bodies represented in mainstream media, I still feel a certain pressure to curate a picture perfect image of myself. Capitalism thrives off of these insecurities to sell us more and more things to strive towards this unattainable beauty standard – which in turn has conditioned society to shame anyone who falls outside of this “norm”.  If I’ve ever spoken out about sex or vaginas online it’s coming from a place of need, seeing as we don’t receive sufficient Sex Ed in school, but often is perceived as “attention seeking” or “outrageous”, when in fact half the world have vaginas so it’s not that big of a deal.”

Photo by Viktoria Slowikowska / Pexels


“The way I view my vagina has definitely changed over time. Going from learning about periods and seeing my body change, it went from an annoyance to something that I felt curious to learn more about. As I got older I gained a lot of confidence from learning about my body and being able to explain exactly what I need or perhaps when something isn’t right. When I was younger I did feel shame around talking about my vagina , but as I said the more I learned about my body the more confident I became in talking about it. Being able to talk about your body is something everyone should be comfortable with but unfortunately isn’t really something you’re taught.

“I do feel that women are made to feel shame around their vaginas. In schools girls are taught the anatomy and biology of having a vagina but not a relationship with your body. I think there’s a lot of expectation on women to know, understand and enjoy their vagina but not there aren’t a lot of open conversations about it, so how are we supposed to just know? For me, it feels good to talk about my vagina, because I believe that I’m still learning. When I’m talking with my friends about experiences, a lot of the time they would have experienced the same or similar, whatever it may be that we’re speaking about. I know my body will continue to change over time as I get older, and if I choose to have children etc but being able to talk about it and having people I trust to speak about it with is a freeing feeling.” 


“My relationship with my vulva is constantly evolving. There have been times when I’ve felt frustration towards my vagina for not providing orgasms in the way we’ve been taught to covet – through penetration alone. That just doesn’t happen for me, or for most people with vulvas for that matter – thank you mainstream media for that unrealistic expectation! I’ve come to accept this and realise that my vulva can give me pleasure in so many other ways. Society makes us think that vulvas are complicated and difficult to deal with. In actuality a vulva has all the same parts as a penis! The external part of the clit is the equivalent to the head of the penis, and no one ever complains about not being able to find that, do they?

“In hindsight I find it crazy that at school we were taught about fallopian tubes but not the clitoris. Imagine if as teenagers we all knew that our bodies were normal whatever they looked like and the basics of how to give a vulva pleasure? Would we not feel much greater satisfaction with what we’ve got down there? I like my vulva. I like that it’s unique and belongs specifically to me. I like how it changes when I’m aroused and how it’s capable of so many wonderful things. I think for a long time I didn’t even think about how it looked. It just was. And then one day in my twenties I realised that I had a clitoral hood that covered most of my clit when I’m not turned on and I kind of freaked out – ‘is this normal?!? Does everyone have this?!’. I spent hours looking at pictures on the internet and studying the vulvas in porn and quickly came to the conclusion that yes, that is TOTALLY normal. There is no one universal norm for what a vulva should or do look like – they’re all different.

I love talking about my vagina! Though I definitely didn’t always feel this way. I think a lot of this confidence came when I decided to start my sex toy business. Also, speaking to my friends with vulvas about our experiences I started to realise that we all fundamentally have the same experiences when it comes to our bits. When we talk about our vaginas we dispel the myths we’re told about them and we realise that our experience is normal and valid. For that reason I’m never going to shut up about my vagina because it makes me feel powerful!”