An expert reveals all.
You probably know by now that your vagina doesn’t react well to strong soaps or perfumed products. Maybe you had it drilled into you by your mum, or maybe you learnt the hard way (hello, thrush).
But while our vaginas are set up quite well to prevent the growth of bad bacteria, they’re not exactly self-cleaning. So how should you approach things after a heavy gym session in those not-so-sweatproof leggings?
Well, it turns out there is a right way to wash down there, and it’s pretty simple. Gynaecologist Nancy Herta dished the deets to Glamour magazine this week, and emphasised that it’s all about simplicity.
“It’s a delicate balance that makes the vagina hostile to bacteria. If you put stuff in there that changes the pH, you can allow bacteria to overgrow,” she explained.
What kind of “stuff” is she referring to? Strongly perfumed shower gels, douches and any kind of anti-bacterial soap.
Nancy’s advice is to use a very mild soap in the shower, and to be sure to pat the area completely dry with a towel before dressing. Excess moisture can make your vagina the perfect breeding ground for thrush, so the more you do to prevent that happening the better.
As for discharge, unless you notice a very strong odour or a colour other than clear, white or yellow, you’re all good, says Nancy. “A lot of women think they need to do something about [discharge], but it’s part of how your vagina cleans itself.”
So there you have it. The best way to keep your vagina clean? Let it do its own thing, and if you must use soap, keep it mild. Simple!
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