The rise of the designer vagina

bikini lineThe popularity of labiaplasty has soared by 109 per cent – making it the third most popular surgery in the UK. The procedure, which can cost between £1,300 and £3,700, involves reconstructing the shape and size of the inner labia. Surgery search engine Whatclinic.com says more than 48 clinics offer the surgery and its popularity has more than doubled.“Growth for such specific treatments as labiaplasty is usually driven by increased consumer awareness,” said a spokesperson. “Often, that's down to coverage on TV shows such as Embarrassing Bodies or in newspapers or magazines. The increase in interest in the procedure is particularly pronounced over the last six months. “All surgery carries some risk of complications arising and these should be discussed in advance of any treatment with the surgeon involved.” The debate around labiaplasty has been heated for some time. BAAPS spokesperson Paul Banwell agrees there has been a distinct rise in popularity but does not think it has anything to do with the glamour industry. “About half of the patients I see in my practice want the operation for function, due to discomfort and problems with exercise, cycling and riding,” he said. “The other 50 per cent want it purely for aesthetic reasons and to boost their self-confidence.”