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In their own words: a qualitative content analysis of women's and men's preferences for women's genitals

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Research increasingly shows that genital attitudes have an impact on sexual well-being and health-seeking behaviours. This study explored what women and men like and dislike about women's genitals. Data are from open-ended items, part of a cross-sectional internet-based survey anonymously completed by 496 women and 198 men. Overall, both women and men had positive attitudes towards women's genitals, although there was overlap between likes and dislikes. Some of the most common likes for women were related to aesthetics and for men were related to tactile and sexual aspects. Men listed more likes than dislikes. The emphasis on both positive and negative messages provides a more complete image of the complex ways people interact with their own and others' bodies and can help tailor clinical and educational messages.
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Keywords: genital attitudes; genital education; genital images; vulva

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: School of Public Health, Center for Sexual Health Promotion, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA 2: Division of Management, Policy and Community Health, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX, USA 3: Department of Gender Studies, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, USA

Publication date: July 4, 2015

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