Let the Kitty Breathe


Everything is stupid, and so are we. Welcome to Jezebel’s Stupidest Summer Ever, a season-long celebration of our worst, most idiotic thoughts and opinions.

How many hours of your life is spent wearing underwear?

Take a second to think about it. Think about the countless hours you’ve spent with a scrap of cotton clinging to your labia. Do you only remove your underwear when you’re about to shower? Are you really spending 23.5 of 24 hours a day, every day, wearing underwear? If so, ask yourself one question: Why?

I’m going to be blunt here, because I care about your vagina, dear reader:

Stop wearing underwear all fucking day and let the kitty breathe, especially at night.

My origin story of forgoing underwear when I sleep is foggy, but there’s a good chance I became a strong advocate sometime in college or a year or two after. Let’s go with sometine between 2008 and 2013. I’m always convinced there’s something wrong with my health, and for a while I was paranoid that I had a yeast infection (I didn’t). I recall reading credible articles that said sleeping sans underwear prevents yeast infections because your vag won’t be trapped in a hot, damp environment that yeasties love for longer than it needs to be. Cool, made sense, I guess.

Well, that has since been debunked, for now:

“This whole notion that wearing or not wearing underwear will improve vaginal health is pretty much a health myth,” [Dr. Lauren] Streicher says. There really isn’t any scientific data out there that proves it’s better for the vagina to sleep without underwear, says [Dr. Mary Jane] Minkin, and it’s really more about personal preference.

So I’ve made it my personal preference, and it’s a personal preference that I’ve felt compelled to encourage others into subscribing. It’s my calling, and every woman poised for greatness has one. For anthropologist Jane Gooddall it’s working with primates. For Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, it’s seeking justice in an unjust world. For Kris Jenner, it’s exploiting her family for profit and meme fodder. For me, it’s inspiring people to sleep undie free.

Once I started sleeping without underwear, I couldn’t stop. From there, I upgraded to forgoing underwear as often as possible. Life has never been better, folks! I’ve only spoken about the joys of sleeping undieless to a few fellow believers, but the consensus is that it’s especially comfortable if you sweat easily, if your wardrobe is constricting, and if your vaginal discharge is wylin (you know who you are; I see you, I love you, you don’t deserve to sit in a shallow puddle of vaginal fluids for hours on end).

Now, let’s get to some FAQ about letting the kitty breathe.

Do you go commando in public?

No, I actually think forgoing underwear underneath your clothing is too nerve-wracking to be fun in a skirt or dress, and too uncomfortable in shorts or jeans (the chaffing, my God). Leggings are the only choice here that would be acceptable, but even then, save it for indoors, love.

What if you live with roommates/anyone who isn’t a romantic partner?

I mean, going underwear-free doesn’t mean you have to greet your roommate with your legs spread wide open when they walk in the door. As long as you’re rocking an oversized tee, a lounging gown, or some loose shorts, you’re gucci.


1) Yes, I absolutely go panty-free during that time of the month because I wear tampons to sleep. Please don’t narc on me to the Tampax Pearl instruction booklet manufacturers: I don’t even sleep for more than eight hours a night. I sleep with a towel underneath me. The boyfriend doesn’t seem to mind. It’s all good.

2) With that said, the only time I support sleeping in your underwear is during your period. I just like living on the edge.

Your vagina doesn’t actually need to breathe. Why are you saying these things? What is your fucking problem?

Because it is my truth and I stand the fuck by it.

Secretions??? Discharge??? What the FUCK, Ashley?

You should know how to wipe your vagina by now, love. That’s on you.

Anyway, don’t knock it ‘til you try it, lads. Go ahead, feel the air between your labial folds. You won’t regret it!*

*If you do regret it, that’s not on me. You just did it wrong. Bye!

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