I don’t usually talk about feminine hygiene but I feel like this is an important topic to discuss. Gynecologists often recommend to avoid the use of any feminine hygiene products such as douche, cleansing wipes, freshening spray or powder, fragrant shower gels or soaps, and instead replace it with a fragrance-free soap or shower gel.
Our lady parts can indeed be sensitive so it’s best to treat it right with something that won’t cause irritation or worse yet an infection. The use of such products may also further upset your vagina’s delicate balance of organisms and it is associated with various reproductive health problems.
According to Cosmopolitan, the vagina should have a pH (or acidity level) of 3.5-4.5, which means there is enough lactobacilli (a “friendly” bacteria that normally live in our digestive, urinary, and genital systems without causing disease) as in good vagina bacteria, and no overgrowth of bad bacteria that can cause odor, irritation, or even bacterial vaginosis (which is actually the most common cause of abnormal vaginal discharge).
A 2006 study found that 27 percent of African-American women and 15 percent of Hispanic women regularly douche, as compared to only 9 percent of white women.
But why do we see so many feminine hygiene products available in stores? it’s advertising after all, isn’t it?!
The good news is that sales on douches has decreased since 2014 according to Consumer Healthcare Products Association also known as CHPA.
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We all have that favorite shower gel like the ones from Bath and Body Works. You wouldn’t think it’ll hurt to try to boost the smell down there by using a scented shower gel…. we’re all guilty of that but little do we know we are ignoring our vagina’s cry for help. The best option is to use a fragrance-free shower gel or soap. I like to use 365 Whole Foods brand for $4.99, it’s a dermatologist tested formula with glycerin, panthenol and aloe vera.
Here are some more interesting links to check out:
“Women of America, I promise you, you do not need vaginal deodorant. You need a doctor. If you use simple soap and water and you get out the shower and there’s still a rancid-ish odor, don’t spray perfume on it! That’s crazy! That would be crazy!” -Sarah Silverman