Nicola Vincent-Abnett

Nicola Vincent-Abnett
"Savant" for Solaris, Wild's End, Further Associates of Sherlock Holms, more Wild's End

Tuesday 30 September 2014

Matters of Taste

Who determines these things?

Because things become things, and that shit happens fast.

I was having a conversation with the dort the other day about the so-called camel toe. It suddenly crossed my mind that this is a modern phenomenon. Women have been wearing trousers for a century for practical purposes, and certainly for fifty years for everyday wear, and yet it’s only in the past decade that this expression has become common. It’s only in the past few years that the camel toe has been a cause for ridicule or embarrassment. Apparently, the proportions of the labia majora are now a subject of discussion. Apparently, it’s a question of taste or fashion... or something.

Because, frankly, women don’t have enough to worry about!

Who on Earth determines what proportions our labia should be for crying out loud? Isn’t it bad enough that we should all be five feet seven and a size 8? Isn’t it hard enough to conform to the ideals of feminine beauty as determined by whoever it is that determines those things? Who are these people? Fashion designers? Casting agents for movies? Whoever it is, it is surely Them and not Us.

Symmetrical faces, glossy hair, pouting lips, pert breasts, peachy bottoms, legs that go on for miles... Do we really have to add neat labia majora to an already impossible list? Or should we just stop wearing the skinny jeans that are so fashionable? Or the hot-pants? Or the leggings that seem so comfortable and practical? We wouldn’t want to be subjects of ridicule, would we?

If there isn’t a cosmetic procedure for reducing the size of one’s labia I’d be surprised. I know for a fact that there are products that are inserted into knickers to mask the labia and create a smooth finish under trousers... I looked them up, because, you know, that’s what the internet’s for. There are padded knickers too.

It’s the nipple all over again.

When did we start to need nipple covers? (I’m sorry but I can’t bring myself to call them petals). OK, maybe under very sheer things if we’re very daring and choose not to wear a bra, but just because we might get cold? There’s no shame, surely, in feeling a chill once in a while.

Whoever is telling us that we need to be embarrassed by our bodies and how they respond to our environment really ought to stop it. We’re already paranoid about our bodies. We already compare them to all the other bodies. From the pimples of puberty to the wrinkles of middle age, from the sweats of adolescence to the flushes of menopause, from every bulge and tickle of erectile tissue to every whiff of a scent of a secretion, we’re doomed to some humiliation or another.

The debate over this fleshy cleft might be the straw that breaks this camel’s back. I might just be done with all of it. I might stop plucking and shaving and bleaching and moisturising, and I might just give up on deodorant and perfume and make-up, and I might just burn my bras and flaunt my goddamned camel toe, because, yes, as it happens, I’m one of those women. Shock horror! I’ve said it.

But here’s the thing. I won’t be buying pads to stuff in my knickers... I might decide not to wear any knickers. I might be a maverick, and if They don’t like it, They’ll just have to be disgusted. My genitalia: my business.
Curtesy of

Oh... and there’s this splendid tattoo of a camel on a toe

I can snark as much as I like, but I do love women who can find a way to have a good laugh at themselves and their bodies, but most of all at Them.


  1. Brava! Bravissima!

    ...and now I shall stop before I decline.

  2. you may enjoy this, how ever warning to everyone else may be not safe for work

  3. Well, Nicola, I lead a sheltered life – thanks for educating me about another thing the good capitalist woman should be worrying about *toddles off to the bathroom to inspect her privates*
    Such pressure on young women to look like porn stars these days. So glad I came of age at the time it wasn't even required to shave one's legs.