Are You a 'Grower' or a 'Shower' — and Does It Matter?

by Kevin Schattenkirk

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Tuesday March 16, 2021
Originally published on March 10, 2021

Are You a 'Grower' or a 'Shower' — and Does It Matter?
  (Source:Getty Images)

Are you a "grower" or a "shower"?

For those unfamiliar with such colloquialisms, a "grower" refers to a penis that expands in length more noticeably during arousal, whereas a "shower" does not expand as much from its flaccid state.

A new article in Medical News Today examines the distinction between the two, how common they are, and if being one or the other has an impact on your sex life and physical and emotional wellbeing.

In a 2018 study that included 274 males, age was a key factor in determining whether participants were growers or showers. Researchers defined growers as having penises that expanded four centimeters or more during arousal, while growers expanded less than four centimeters.

Before the study, participants were examined for erectile dysfunction, measured while flaccid, and then given a vasodilation drug before researchers measured their erect penis. The study reported a 5.3-centimeter expansion in growers and a 3.1-centimeter expansion in showers.

The study found that there were no differences between growers and showers when it came to race, smoking history, the presence of multiple medical conditions in a participant (or comorbidities), erectile function, flaccid penis length, firmness after receiving the vasodilation injection, or ultrasound results for erectile dysfunction.

However, research reveals that age is a factor for differentiation, as collagen and elastic fibers in the penis can impact its growth. Lowering testosterone levels with age can also have an impact.

Interestingly, researchers found that 73 participants fell in the grower category while 205 were showers. Both figures exceed the total of 274 participants, with no explanation. However, this suggests that a few participants might straddle the line between growing and showing. Also, growers tend to be younger, with a mean age of 47.5, versus showers, with a mean age of 55.9.

Researchers say there is no indication that being either a grower or shower impacts sex life. Instead, an individual's dissatisfaction with how their genital look can lead to an unfulfilling sex life. Participants who reported dissatisfaction with the appearance of their penises reported having less penetrative and receptive oral sex. But overall, researchers conclude that "there is no evidence to suggest that being a shower or grower affects their health or sex life."

Kevin Schattenkirk is an ethnomusicologist and pop music aficionado.