Woman with Long Legs Wearing a Sweater on CouchLabiaplasty has transitioned from being a functional procedure alone and has increased in popularity as a cosmetic plastic surgery amongst women. There are several cosmetic reasons why one may decide on labiaplasty—and these reasons go beyond medical necessity. In this post, the doctors at San Francisco-based Plastic Surgery Associates discuss the aesthetic and cosmetic reasons why a woman may pursue labiaplasty and its benefits.

What is Labiaplasty?

Also referred to in the lay press as vaginal rejuvenation, labiaplasty is a procedure that seeks to

modify the inner lips of the vagina (the labia minora) and/or the outer lips (labia majora).  It is most often surgically performed on the inner lips, which happen to be the folds that are closest to the clitoris, resulting in an appearance that is “tucked in.”

Just as no two noses are exactly alike, the same holds true for vulvas and labia. Inner labia can sometimes be longer than outer labia and vice versa. Sometimes the labia appear symmetrical, and other times the labia visibly show the clitoris. The size and shape are unique to each woman.

And because this body part is unique, a woman might have a strong opinion on how she believes it should look.  A labiaplasty can be performed when a person feels their labia is too long or they simply want it to look a different way.

Labiaplasty Can Be Performed for a Variety of Reasons

Labiaplasty can be pursued by a woman who is naturally born with longer labia lips and desires a different beauty aesthetic as she ages. Other times, a woman becomes interested in labiaplasty because her vagina has changed due to aging, loss of skin elasticity, or elongation, as well as because of childbirth. In some cases, cosmetic labiaplasty could be combined with other cosmetic surgeries as part of a “Mommy Makeover.”

Of course, there are medical reasons why a woman would pursue labiaplasty. These reasons include physical irritation when trying to play a sport, go running, or ride a bike, as well as pain during sex when the outer lips get pushed inside the vagina upon penetration.

The Aesthetic Reasons for Labiaplasty

When it comes to labiaplasty, a woman may choose this cosmetic procedure because she feels self-conscious about the way her genitalia look. In turn, this could trigger emotional or psychological distress during sexual or intimate situations or cause her to shy away from wearing certain clothing items.

Labiaplasty Can Improve Confidence

Women who decide on labiaplasty for cosmetic reasons oftentimes report experiencing feelings of renewed self-confidence after the surgery. When self-confidence improves, self-esteem rises along with it, and that offers the potential to transform one’s life for the better.

Cosmetic labiaplasty can help a woman feel more relaxed during intimate moments, and if the labia were long prior to surgery, it is likely that feelings of pleasure, sensitivity, and comfort will also increase, which can lead to better orgasms and sexual experiences.

How is Labiaplasty Performed?

If you are considering cosmetic labiaplasty, you may be wondering how the procedure is performed and what the recovery might look like.  Here is what to expect:

  • It is a quick procedure.
  • A general or local anesthetic is administered, which may sedate you and usually lasts between 1-2 hours.
  • Unwanted tissue will then be removed using a scalpel or a laser.
  • Incisions associated with the surgery will be closed with dissolvable stitches to prevent complications and aid in the healing process.
  • After the surgery, the anesthetic will wear off, and you will wake up. It is likely you will be able to return home the same day of the surgery; however, this could vary depending on your own health as well as if you are having any other surgeries performed.

Recovery time can vary, but most patients need to take a couple of weeks off of work to recover.  The genital area will likely be swollen and sore, so using the bathroom could feel painful. You will be asked to only use sanitary napkins after surgery and avoid tampons for a month. Additionally, strenuous activity and exercise should be avoided for a few weeks, and sexual intercourse should be put off for approximately six weeks. It is important to consult with your surgeon about the specifics of your recovery time.

Schedule a Labiaplasty Consultation

If you are interested in a labiaplasty for cosmetic reasons, now is the time to schedule a consultation and learn more about the procedure. The doctors at Plastic Surgery Associates in San Francisco welcome the opportunity to speak with you about your cosmetic goals and invite you to reach out today.