Before getting to the video, let me just say, I applaud their bravery for going through this process on camera. It took me until my 20s to get up the nerve to look at my vagina in the privacy of my bathroom, so the idea of doing that for Buzzfeed (whose videos tend to go viral) is terrifying to say the least.
The point of the video was to show the world that all vaginas, much like the women who possess them, are unique and beautiful. However, the exercise of achieving the sketches of the volunteer vaginas was more than a little awkward.
They brought in a professional portrait artist who had never drawn a vagina before. She didn't actually get to see them for reference — she had to create the portraits from the women's descriptions of their vaginas. Talk about a challenge!
I like to think of this whole experiment as like trying to nail down a suspect who has long since evaded the police. The women who last saw them have to describe them as best they can to a criminal sketch artist, and if their descriptions are detailed and accurate, they'll be able to pick theirs out from a line up. I'm imagining a poster for The Usual Suspects, but replacing all the men with vaginas.
My favorite part of this experiment is the women trying to describe their vaginas to the sketch artist in laymen's terms. It's one thing to see it for yourself, it's quite another to have to relay how it looks to an outside party. However, I think that's what makes this experiment truly successful — each woman has to see every aspect of their vagina, and give it the respect it's due in order to get an accurate depiction.
The best descriptions were the most candid — one woman said the lips of her vagina looked like "two string cheese," while another said "it's like a pistachio." Those details may sound weird and even funny, but they're surprisingly precise analogies when you think about them. As the women get more comfortable, the analogies start coming more easily. It's then that we get "a very healthy raisin," and "a dried peach,"
Then the final portraits are hung up on a wall and the real fun starts. Half of the women are able to pick out the sketches of their vaginas immediately, whereas it takes a couple guesses for the other half to get theirs. The best response here is "that one's pretty, that's not mine, but...I like that one."
It's so easy to forget about this hugely important part of ourselves, and this video reminds us that getting back in touch with her can be surprising and fun.
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