We all direct a lot of energy toward our vaginas. We have yearly
doctor visits, we wax and laser the hair off of it, and we worry about
the way it smells and the way it looks.
But the one thing we don’t need to stress about is cleaning our
vaginas because, like a self-cleaning oven, your v**ina cleans itself. I
know it seems wrong to do nothing to clean your v**ina, but that’s the
best thing for it.
“The v**ina is pretty good at cleaning itself,” Dr. Nancy Herta,
OB/GYN, told Glamour. “It’s a delicate balance that makes the v**ina
hostile to bacteria. If you put stuff in there that changes the pH, you
can allow bacteria to overgrow.”
A healthy v**ina usually maintains a slightly acidic environment with
a pH of about 3.8 to 4.5. The level of acidity is the result of the
presence of good bacteria such as Lactobacilli in the v**ina, which
produce hydrogen peroxide and prevent other harmful microorganisms from
When there’s a loss of acidity or disturbance in the vaginal pH, it
allows the increase of bacteria and yeast in the v**ina, leading to
symptoms like itching, vaginal discharge, and pain when peeing.
Sometimes just letting something be is the most difficult thing to
do. It seems strange to not give the v**ina a good scrubbing, especially
when it’s releasing a fair amount of discharge. But we need to resist
“A lot of women think they need to do something about it [the
discharge] but it’s part of how your v**ina cleans itself,” Dr. Herta
Discharge changes depending on what stage you’re in during your
menstrual cycle. s*x can also affect your discharge so that it gives off
a faint scent.
“The sperm can change the pH,” Dr. Herta continues. “But the v**ina will take care of that.”
There’s also no good reason to douche, as it doesn’t do any good and can create dryness and make health problems for women.
“The v**ina is a self-cleansing organ,” says David Eschenbach, M.D, a
professor of gynecology at the Univeristy of Washington. “With regular
bathing, douching is completely unnecessary.”
All you need is plain old water if you need to clean your lady parts.
But if you really want to use soap, use the gentlest you can find and
just use it on your labia. Never put anything up inside your v**ina.
When you’re done with your shower, pat your groin dry with a towel
before getting dressed so the excess moisture doesn’t sit there
stagnating and cause a yeast infection. Keep body washes and perfumed
soaps away from your v**ina, and trust that it will do its thing and
keep the pH where it should be.
Your v**ina’s got this.