Today I learned about a new trend (that's been popularized via TikTok, of course) called "vabbing." It's a neologism that's a mashup of "vagina" and "dabbing." What is it? Well, Dee Salmin of ABC.net.au explains:
Basically you wear your vaginal fluids as perfume. You put your fingers inside yourself, dab your juice on your wrists, neck, behind the ears – wherever you'd normally put perfume. People talking about it on TikTok reckon the pheromones from your puswa will help you attract partners – and they swear by it.
It's causing a lot of buzz on the internet. Some folks are swearing by it, saying the pheromones will help you attract a mate (or at least a date), and others are making fun of it. And many articles are being written about it. Journalists are spending time talking to actual doctors, asking the hard-hitting questions like, "does it work?". Hannah Jackson of The Cut explains after interviewing famous OBGYN Dr. Jen Gunter, that no, it does not work:
Humans have a nearly useless vomeronasal organ, which is what helps animals process pheromones. A positive reaction to a smell is actually an evolutionary response. "People mistake conditioning with the concept of pheromones," Dr. Gunter says. "It only takes a few exposures to something that we think is pleasant to like that smell."
"There is no conclusive advice on the impact of vabbing," Boodram [Shan Boodram, who has been vabbing for over 15 years and is a firm believer in it] admits, even cautioning those on the fence against trying it. "It's not necessary and the fun is when it's something that you do because you believe it will make you feel more confident," she says. Vabbing's potency appears to come not from the juice itself, but from the mindset. "Whatever makes you feel like you can bust that shit open and feel hella confident and use your vagina as perfume," Boodram said on [Bachelor Nation podcast] Talking It Out. But Dr. Gunter worries that misrepresenting vabbing as a scientifically founded practice has more insidious consequences: "If people truly believe that there are pheromones, they've been misled," she says. "I think it shows us how very easily medical disinformation can become perceived as fact."
Yeah, I don't even know what to do with this one. Try it if you must, dear reader. I'll just be sitting here, vab-free, wondering what trend TikTok will bring us next.