Plastic Surgery: Why My Vagina is Not an Old Sofa

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Iman is a photographer who, through her unique process of coaching and photography, can show a woman what other people see when they look at her. She is passionate about teaching other photographers how to live and be a professional and making change in the world. She dreams of changing the way women look at their bodies and how the world defines beauty. She also thinks being an instructor on CreativeLIVE would be incredible. Iman battles Lyme disease and shares her unique view of dreaming while fighting for her health. Her post day is Wednesday. [email protected] Iman Woods If you aren't sure how to comment on this story, click here.
Plastic Surgery Composite of two girls

Plastic surgery seeks to change people based on fleeting preference. Here’s my artistic composite of two girls adding and subtracting features.

The massive and prolific plastic surgery industry sets trends.

Press releases announce increasing requests for specific procedures, but plastic surgery is big business. Any well run biz machine knows you have to continually add new offerings to continue financial growth and stay relevant. I often hear about new procedures that are touted as becoming popular (pinkie toe removal to fit into heels, anyone?). I always wonder just who is making these trends so trendy? Is it the public or the industry? My dream, insurmountable as it seems, is to change self-esteem in our world. That starts with looking at how we choose to have plastic surgery.

The power of suggestion is more powerful than we realize.  Suggestion combined with repetition and backed by a multibillion dollar industry accounts for some of the most damaging effects on our collective self-esteem.

I’ve been seeing disturbing ads for “vaginal rejuvenation”.

Before I go further I want to be clear that there are necessary cases for vaginal rejuvenation. Some women are attacked and mutilated and it’s absolutely necessary and healthy to try to repair the physical harm of such an emotional abuse. There will always be a gray area with plastic surgery. My focus is not on the cases that were decided or justified for various reasons. I’m talking about seeking youth which is something our culture enjoys, endorses and requires.

Even the wording of this new wave of plastic surgery aims to make us ashamed of our most sacred part. Is there not ONE part of my body that can be allowed to age normally, guilt-free and naturally? has a second definition and example sentence for rejuvenate:

re·ju·ve·nate [ri-joo-vuh-neyt]

to restore to a former state; make fresh or new again

example: to rejuvenate an old sofa.

News flash: my vagina is not an old sofa!

I’m standing up against this practice and saying that my vagina is MINE and should not be compared to an old sofa in need of refreshing. There are no lost remotes stuck between cushions or quarters rolling around.

I get emails and messages every day from women who can’t see their beauty. They are blinded by the polished perfection of retouched photos and expertly lit movies. They find themselves lacking when seeing ads for Botox or weight loss programs.

Women spend immense amounts of money trying to be attractive to men. Men watch porn. It’s a logical jump for women to want to emulate what they think men are attracted to. Jezebel just posted a story about a new vaginal makeover terrifyingly aptly dubbed “The Barbie”.

We want desperately to be loved, we have been taught (by people trying to sell us things) that we need to change ourselves to catch Prince Charming’s eye. Cinderella needed a head to toe makeover to catch her prince. And we never see her humbly dressed again. Would she have considered botox because he didn’t notice her in her rags?

There is a deep disconnect with our spirits when we change ourselves to try and entice a partner. The partners who only find us attractive within certain parameters will not love us unconditionally. So you have to decide what kind of love you want and are worthy of.

The cases of plastic surgery rejuvenating vaginas are concerning, most of all the ones seeking youth.

I’m worried about the women who seek to change their bodies to better match what men watch on porn. (Because porn is about as realistic and informative as a 60 year soap opera.) I hurt for the women who are so dissatisfied with imperfection and aging they’ll trade added debt for someone else’s vision of what they should be.

Your feeling of beauty cannot rest on anyone else’s shoulders. It can’t rest on future plastic surgery. Because the day these outside influences get critical and you crumble is the day you’ve given your greatest power to someone who can’t possibly treasure it.

Spend one moment today telling yourself that you are perfect and whole and meant to be who you are at this very moment. Wrinkles, vagina and all.


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  • ImanWoods

    I was worried it was a bit too much, but it’s TRUE. We take our time for granted. It should NOT be wasted feeling not good enough. Especially when all we’re doing is comparing ourselves to false perfection.

  • ImanWoods

    That’s my passion. I can talk for hours about it, I see the negative effects every day with my job.

  • The first time I even heard of this procedure was at a live performance of Eve Ensler’s “The Vagina Monologues”. That book, and play, opened my eyes to how lucky we are in the US to be able to make decisions about our bodies when and how we want. I can guarantee that although I’ve talked about a nip and tuck after my weight loss, this will never be on my list. 

    Thanks for the post Iman!Heather