5 Porn Stars Debunk The Myth Of The Perfect "Porn Pussy"

In late April, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists released new guidelines for doctors chatting with teens about labiaplasty surgery. This wasn’t just a routine update: ACOG’s announcement came on the heels of an observed uptick in labiaplasties performed on adolescents, with 400 minors receiving the surgery in 2015, up from 222 the year before.
Not surprisingly, the media seized on the story, with many outlets eager to find a source to blame for the supposed trend in teen labiaplasties. Just as unsurprisingly? A number of members of the press quickly announced that the obvious villain here was porn. As Slate surmised in a piece on the story, young women everywhere are developing ideas about normal labia based on those depicted in porn, "which are often already surgically modified or chosen for their slight, monochrome appearance."
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There’s just one small problem with that reasoning: It’s not based in anything even remotely resembling fact. As the former editor of Fleshbot, I spent over seven years covering the mainstream porn industry — and, as part of that work, I watched a heck of a lot of porn. And with that expertise, I can say with great certainty there’s no one specific style of labia that’s heavily featured in porn. Frankly, hardcore porn is often a bevy of labial diversity — particularly when compared to, say, a source like WebMD.
But you don’t have to take my word for it. I reached out to a number of popular, celebrated porn stars — many of whom direct as well — to find out what kind of labia they tend to see in porn, what directors look for in a performer’s vagina, and, of course, whether their own labia meet the labiaplasty standards that supposedly run rampant in porn.
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Dana Vespoli
Performer/Director
Notable Awards: nominated for Best New Starlet in 2005, inducted into the AVN Hall of Fame in 2016

Are you aware of any industry preference for a specific type of labia?
"I can only speak for myself and the talent I’ve dealt with — if anything with regards to labia, I think that the more fuller, fleshy labia is fetishized more than the cookie-cutter-looking Barbie vaginas. I know Christoph Clark had a thing about really fleshy vaginas. I’ve worked with so many different kinds of girls, I’ve never seen girls say, 'God, I hate my pussy, it’s so ugly.' I’ve never come across it.

"I have heard of directors concerned about bruises, marks, weight gain, more natural, saggier boobs — those are the kinds of things I’ve heard complaints about. But never vaginas.

"Clearly, people haven’t been watching pornos, because you see a variety of vaginas in scenes. They’re not all, like, little-girl-looking vaginas."

How would you describe your own labia?
"I’ve always been told I have a chubby pussy. So I guess it’s chubby? I don’t know. I don’t have really super-fleshy, long inner labia; it’s sort of compact. And what’s funny is I’ve never really thought about it — I remember I had my labia pierced, and I was told I had an ‘immature inner labia,’ and I was mildly offended. But it’s one of those funny things where I’ve never even had an opinion on it.

"I’ve always thought larger, fleshier pussies were cool and fun, just for performing. Kimberly Kane — she has a very fleshy pussy, and I thought it was awesome. Honestly, I more have a preference for those ones than the smaller ones. There’s more to do with the other ones, I was always mildly envious.

"[Pussy aesthetics] never really come up. It’s funny considering the business that we’re in. It’s more like, Is it too sore to take a lot?, Is it stretchy enough? — it’s usually the capacity of the pussy and not so much the aesthetics of it that are discussed in the industry."

I think it’s funny that it was hard for you to even describe yours. It just suggests that they’re not being classified in the way that people seem to think they are. Everything about the female body is classified and broken off into types in a lot of porn, but not so much the pussy. If it were fetishized in that way, we would have more readily available terminology.
"I don’t even think there are search terms for it. We have MILF, teen, big boobs, small boobs, natural boobs, tattoos, brunette, hairy — the only time the pussy is mentioned is if it’s shaved or hairy. Not fleshy vaginas, small vaginas — that tells you everything you need to know. There’s no market for specific vagina type. That’s hilarious."
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Kimberly Kane
Performer/Director
Notable Awards: nominated for AVN Female Performer Of The Year in 2011, inducted into the AVN Hall of Fame in 2016

How would you describe your labia?
"XXLabia."

In your years in the porn industry, have you ever felt as though directors were looking for a specific type of pussy in performers? Has labia shape ever come up during a casting?
"People have always noticed my labia in [the adult industry], which led to my vagina being featured on the cover of Taschen's Big Book Of Pussy. As far as movies go, I don't think I was directly cast for having large labia. However, in the rebranding of content, they have put my scenes into 'big pussy' compilations."

When you’ve worked as a director, have you ever factored in labia shape when casting a performer?
"I've never factored in labia size, but I do favor a big bush."

Does it ever seem like certain types of labia are more popular or preferred within porn? If so, what types?
"I think young girls are favored in porn, and with young girls come young labia and pussy. My labia were smaller when I was 19, but bodies change, and so do labia."

Where do you think young women might get the idea that a certain type of labia — the compact, small inner labia type associated with labiaplasty — is preferable or "better"?
"I think we — girls and women — are sometimes scared to look different or age. I think a lot of women get labiaplasties because they want a ‘youthful’-looking pussy. It's just another sales tactic to shame women into thinking their beautiful, unique, life-giving pussies aren't good enough. I'm sure there are medical reasons why women need labiaplasty. My opinions are based on cosmetic surgery only."
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Bella Vendetta
Performer/Director

How would you describe your own labia?
"I think my pussy is perfect and beautiful, which is one of the reasons why I did porn in the first place. I was like, this thing needs to be photographed; it’s awesome! I have one lip that’s longer than the other, that sticks out like a little tongue. I love it. It’s unique, it’s my pussy, and I think it’s perfect."

When you’ve been on porn sets, have you felt like your labia were being scrutinized, or like directors have wanted you to fit a norm?
"Every time I can ever remember making porn, directors, producers, and co-stars all have all remarked about my pretty pussy. I do it, too, when I’m shooting with someone. If you’re about to eat someone out, you want to tell them that their pussy is great. It’s the opposite. No one’s ever been like, 'Oh, I don’t know, one lip’s a little longer' — no one’s ever done that. It’s celebrated for not looking cookie-cutter.

"[When I’ve shot] other women, a lot of women who you’re about to photograph will be like, 'I have puffy labia,' and when you go, 'That’s great!' they’re like, 'Oh, okay!' — that’s the first time someone’s told them that, that it looks great. And then, you put it on a website, and they get a flood of guys being like, ‘I love puffy labia!’ And then, you realize there’s an entire subset of [porn fans] for pretty much every type of pussy."

Where do you think this idea comes from, that porn enforces this idea of one kind of labia?
"I don’t know. It’s the same idea that porn enforces this one kind of woman — they’re all blond with big, fake tits and plastic surgery on every part of their body. And it’s a line that people tell themselves so that they can say, 'Well, that’s not real, but what we do in the bedroom is real. Those people aren’t even really human; they're completely fake, right down to their pussies.' If you ask which porn stars have [labiaplasties], can anyone name one?"

It seems like women come to porn sets with this idea that their pussy is not acceptable, and then find out that it is. It seems like women are developing this idea outside of porn that there’s something wrong with their labia, and then assume that that idea comes from porn.
"I’ve had the experience, while doing figure modeling or fetish modeling, where people would send you into the producer’s office, and they’d be like, 'Strip — let me see what your pussy looks like. Nope, you’re not for us.' That can certainly happen, and maybe people misconstrue that as 'all the pussies [must] look the same' — but that just means you work with a different producer. A lot of people are going to look at me and say, 'You’re too fat, you’re too scarred, you’re too old, you’re too this,' whatever. That doesn’t mean that I don’t exist in porn, however.

"I work at a full-nude strip club, and have for many years. I literally show my pussy, up close and personal, to strangers on a weekly basis. A wide range of people: men, women, queers, every different age, race, and demographic. And no one has ever said anything negative to me. I have hair on my pussy now, so some people will remark about that, but no one’s ever been like, 'One labia’s bigger than the other! Get out of here, girl, you’re ugly! That’s not a porn star pussy!'"

In a lot of porn, you’re not even getting a good look at the labia.
"I think there’s something to be said about Playboy and Hustler and these magazines that a lot of people, when they talk about porn, that’s...what they see in their minds. And there’s a very specific body type there. They Photoshop the shit out of their pictures, including vaginas. They lighten and tighten and completely change. In porn — active videos — you can’t do that. The close-up is a pussy getting pounded; you don’t ever really get a good shot of what someone really looks like, what their genitals really look like, a lot of times."
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Joanna Angel
Performer/Director
Notable Awards: inducted into the AVN Hall of Fame in 2016

How would you describe your labia?
"Ha! It's pretty meaty and like, moderately flappy, if that makes any sense."

In your years in the porn industry, has labia shape ever come up during a casting? Did you ever feel like directors were looking for a specific type of pussy in performers?
"No, never. Directors looked for a certain type of tits, a certain type of ass, and certain sex acts."

When you direct, do you consider labia shape when casting a performer?
"No I haven't. There have definitely been girls who have come along where I have been like, 'Wow, that girl really has a nice vagina!' But vagina shape has never been a deal-breaker in terms of whether I was going to cast someone or not."

Does it ever seem like certain types of labia are more popular or preferred within porn? If so, what types?
"Everyone has their own particular taste. Some fans love the coin-slot, clean, and organized-looking vagina, and some people like the real meaty ones. I don't think directors/producers in the actual industry care about vagina shape, but I'm sure fans have a special relationship with certain porn stars’ vaginas.

"However, I can tell you who does care about vagina shape: Steve, the owner of Fleshlight. His entire empire is based off of vagina shape. In my first meeting with him, he told me he really liked my vagina and he thought it would go over well, and it was one of the nicest compliments I have ever received. He told me all his customers all prefer the meaty/flappy vaginas over the coin slot-looking ones. All the top-selling Fleshlight girls do, in fact, have the more, um... textured vaginas. Sorry, I am trying to stop myself from repeatedly using the word 'meaty,' because it's horrible, but I'm not sure how else to say it. There's a good amount of people who buy my Fleshlight [NSFW], because they are specifically fans of my work. There are also a good amount of Fleshlight connoisseurs who are buying the product because they like the style of my vagina. So any woman insecure about her less-than-perfect-looking vagina should know that the vagina empire was built on natural vaginas. Not ones with labiaplasties!"

Where do you think young women might get the idea that a certain type of labia — the compact, small, inner labia type associated with labiaplasty — is preferable or "better"?
"Honestly, I was incredibly insecure about my own vagina because the only 'porn' I ever saw was Playboy and old issues of Penthouse magazine where everything was incredibly over-photoshopped. Once I got into porn and stripping, I was like, Oh, no one’s vagina actually looks like that! Especially porn star ones — ours have a little more wear and tear than your average person’s vagina. So honestly, I think that ‘90's glossy porn is where it came from. I don't think the next generation of women growing up will have that same insecurity, because that over-airbrushed, magazine look is not really a thing anymore.

"I live in Los Angeles — the capital of plastic surgery — and I have lots of friends who get all kinds of procedures done. Botox, fat transfers, bigger boobs, smaller boobs, bigger asses, lipo, etc., are all common things I hear girls chat about on set or at the spa. Labiaplasty is seldom brought up. In my entire time I've spent in the industry, I can only think of one girl that I know who had a labiaplasty procedure done. And she did it because she had to get an unfortunate medical procedure done to her labia, and the cosmetic stuff that was done afterwards was kind of necessary and didn't cost any extra."
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Skin Diamond
Performer, currently appearing in Showtime’s Submission
Notable Awards: nominated for AVN Best New Starlet in 2012 and AVN Female Performer Of The Year in 2013, 2014, & 2015

How would you describe your labia?
"I would describe my labia as — I don’t know, I guess it’s an outtie? When I was younger, I used to think mine was weird. I didn’t like mine when I was a teenager, because, you know, when you’re a teenager, you’re still young, you haven’t really seen a lot of vaginas at that point, you don’t really know how widely they vary.

"I can see why some girls would be self-conscious, because it’s new, and they’re not really aware. But it’s like with anything, everyone’s so different — it's like a fingerprint."

Have you gotten any kind of responses about the shape of your labia on porn sets?
"No. I’ve definitely never gotten any negative anything about my vagina — no one’s ever really said, 'Oh, your vagina’s too much this.'

"I don’t think I’ve even really come across that many labiaplasties in porn, to be honest. The only girls I can think of that would have had would have been girls that already have a lot of other plastic surgery — their tits, their lips, their ass, might as well get your pussy done too at that point. But I don’t think that that’s the normal thing. Girls are getting plastic surgery less and less in porn. Not as many girls have giant tits anymore — look at Stoya, Belladonna, they never got fake boobs."

I’ve talked to a lot of porn performers, and no one’s ever felt like there’s a preferred form of labia. And yet, there’s this cultural idea that everyone in porn has a labiaplasty. Do you have any thoughts on why journalists think all porn stars have one kind of labia?
"There’s so much wrong with that statement. I’ve...seen every single kind of vagina in porn, I’ve worked a lot in porn. And I feel like the girls that are working in porn are going to know more about...we’ve had the vaginas in our faces, right up close. Maybe our vaginas are just all so perfect-looking, and people think they’re fake. (laughs) Maybe it’s a compliment?"

What would you say to teenage girls about their labia?
"Give it a second. When I was blossoming, I thought I had an ugly vagina. I did not like how I looked at all. When you see diagrams and stuff, it always looks perfect, and you’re at a self-conscious age, too. That doesn’t mean you’re always going to think that way, and your body’s still growing.

"Even doing things like getting lip injections when you’re a teenager is bad idea I think, because you’re still growing, your body’s not fully there yet, you should give it a second.

"I used to not like my vagina at all, but after a while, I started to be like, You know what, actually? I’m getting a good response to this. This is a good vagina!

"And every girl is different. Some girls have the tiniest vaginas. And then you get girls where it’s all there, and there’s more to play with. It’s like hairstyles: Everyone’s different. You gotta just be happy with what you got."

You said you thought yours was ugly. Where do you think you got the idea of what a pretty vulva was?
"I think maybe it stems back to the whole Barbie thing. Everything’s so perfect and compact.

"I thought that there was too much labia. I thought it was supposed to all be in. I didn’t realize some vaginas were innies and some were outies. It’s like belly buttons. There’s no right or wrong in any of that."
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