Conclusion: DIY Sex
This chapter concludes by suggesting that despite the inroads of twentieth-century sexology and feminism in destigmatising female sexual desire, the desire for cosmetic labiaplasty is evidence that female bodies are consistently represented and experienced as a sexual problem to be solved. In surveying the historical contexts outlined in the book, this chapter highlights the entwinement of gender and race in the making of the diagnostic category of ‘hypertrophy’. Feminist critiques of female genital cosmetic surgery are essential if we want to challenge the racism inherent in eugenic biotechnologies aimed at creating the ‘perfect’ or ‘normal’ appearance and the sexist emphasis on female perfectability that are literally shaping matter into a single fetishised aesthetic ideal. The chapter concludes that ‘hypertrophy of the labia minora’ is not a medical problem, but a cultural one. Therefore, the solution should be cultural change, with female-centred strategies that support body-positivity for women, rather than surgery.