7 Things You Think Are More Unsanitary Than They Actually Are

Where did the idea that female underarm hair is “unsanitary” come from?

No, seriously. It seems as if whenever I stumble upon another tired ol’ female body hair debate, there’s always someone–of all different gender persuasions–who makes some holier than thou claim that something like female underarm hair is unsanitary, which is why whatever woman they’re roasting shouldn’t have it.

Um, question: Should we only be worried about harmful bacteria when women don’t shave their armpits? Because I’m pretty sure if this was an actual concern, there would be a concentrated effort to make sure that men shave their armpits too.

Oh, wait…there isn’t…because it’s all BS.

People are really out here thinking that they’re scientists and doctors when the only thing they do is use WebMD to make sure that their headache isn’t a tumor. When it comes to what’s sanitary or not, it’s important to know that bacteria is everywhere and it’s not all bad. But when it does come to bad bacteria, you’d be surprised by what actually is or isn’t all that sanitary. Here are seven things that really aren’t as unsanitary as you think.


I count myself as one of those people who really makes a show of wiping down a toilet seat before I use it, but in all honesty, the toilet seat really isn’t as dirty as it seems. Shocking, I know, because it gets up close and personal with booty after booty. But you’ll find more harmful bacteria in the sink than the toilet. Hell, your phone is more of a danger zone than the toilet seat is.

Broad City

Hairy Pits

Any part of your body that produces sweat is suceptible to bacteria. We all have bacteria chillin’ in our armpits, but that happens whether you have hair there or not. Some believe that hair traps odors better, but a bad smell isn’t a signifier of being unsanitary. And like I said in the intro, nobody clamors about bacteria when men have hairy armpits, so you can ignore this alarmist nonsense.



The same sentiment is said of pubic hair, and—again—it only seems to be an issue of sanitation if it’s a woman’s pubes while men’s pubes are A-okay (even when they're stuck in your teeth during oral…I guess we're just going to have to accept that too). When it comes to bacteria down south, you need to be more concerned about maintaining healthy bacteria in the vagina as opposed to some phantom nasty bacteria from pubic hair. In fact, pubic hair actually protects the vagina's delicate ecosystem and traps harmful bacteria, which can cause infections. Excess moisture and heat, touching your bits with dirty items, and STDs can alter the balance of bacteria in the vagina, which can lead to infections. Whether you're hairless down there or not, be careful!


Skipping A Shower (Or Two)

Good news: You can skip a day of showering—even two!—without becoming a living, breathing cesspool of bad bacteria. No, but really, science supports this. Basically, you’re really not as dirty at the end of the day as you think you are. So if you skip a day, relax, you’re not alone and you’re not a filthy animal either.

Mommie Dearest

Dog Slobber

Did you know that a dog’s saliva has less harmful bacteria than our own human saliva? Now, am I going to let some dog slobber all over my face without cringing and immediately finding a bathroom? Nah, I…don’t do animal drool like that. But I can at least rest easy knowing that I didn’t contact something nasty. Then again, dogs eat their own poop so...

A Goofy Movie

Door Handles

You might be someone who is super squicked out by the idea of having to touch a doorknob. You think of all the people picking their nose, not washing their hands after using the bathroom, dealing with a cold...Well, good news: you can freak out a little bit less. Most door handles are made of metal, an environment which really isn’t very hospitable for bacteria (same goes for coins).



Urine is sterile, which means that it really shouldn’t be a concern to you on the germ front. It's poop you need to watch out for. But still, uh, you’ll probably want to avoid it anyway.


Stumble across any surprises? Have you encountered people saying that women’s body hair is unsanitary? Tell us in the comments!

You can follow the author, Ashley Reese, on Twitter or Instagram. Don’t worry, she doesn’t bite!

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