Should I shave around my vagina before sex?
First of all, just to clarify, the vulva is the outer part of the female genitalia, and that's the part that grows hair on it. The vagina is the inner part (the canal) that you can't see.
Shaving is a matter of personal preference. Some people prefer how it looks and feels to shave their pubic hair, while other people prefer to keep the hair. No one should pressure you into doing it or not.
Is waxing your pubes bad for you? I heard it works better than shaving.
If done by professionals, waxing is safe. It can be painful for some people, but others prefer it because the hair takes longer to grow back. The way you choose to remove body hair (or not) is completely up to you. If you choose to buy a waxing kit and do it at home, read the instructions very carefully and try on a small area of skin first to make sure you are doing it correctly.
Is it true that shaving your pubic hair can increase STI risk?
There has been some concern that shaving or waxing the genitals could increase STI risk. This is because anything that causes small breaks in the skin, like shaving, makes it easier for infections to happen. However, a 2019 study found that there is no correlation between hair removal and increased risk of Chlamydia and Gonorrhea. The study did not investigate whether there's a connection between shaving/waxing and the risk of contracting other STIs.
Pubic hair removal or "grooming" alone will not increase your risk of an STI; just make sure your skin is kept clean before and after and that you're being careful to avoid nicking yourself.