Feminine hygiene need-to-know
The vagina is a wondrous thing – really, it is! But a recent beautyheaven survey confirmed that a lot of women still don’t feel comfortable discussing their vaginas or their intimate health issues. Many women will choose to suffer from a feminine health issue in silence because they are too embarrassed to seek a solution. They feel alone and don’t realize many women experience the same vaginal health issues. And because women don’t want to speak about vaginal health, quite a few myths about our lady gardens can arise and cause confusion and misinformation around a number of feminine hygiene topics.
But don’t worry – we’re here to help you sort out the vagina fact from the vagina fiction, so you never have to guess about feminine hygiene ever again. Thanks to our recent survey in partnership with Vagisil, we have more insight than ever into just what vagina myths are still circulating, so here are some of the most common myths (and the facts!) about the vagina.
MYTH: The vagina is self-cleaning
Nope, sorry – even though your mother might have told you otherwise growing up, the vagina isn’t actually a self-cleaning oven. “In part, the vagina does take care of itself,” says Dr. Althea O’Shaughnessy, board certified OB/GYN with a specialty in Reproductive Endocrinology & Infertility. “There are bacteria that live in the vagina and most of the time they live very happily together – but there are so many factors that can affect the vagina and the vulva.” Which leads us on to our next point...
FACT: Your vagina requires a little maintenance
Your natural, healthy vaginal bacteria might just be doing its thing, but then when it’s exposed to certain elements, issues can pop up that need addressing. “For example, medications can cause dryness, itchiness and burning because the pH is off, so that predisposes you to certain types of infections,” explains Dr. O’Shaughnessy.
Our recent survey revealed that 39 percent of women don’t use feminine hygiene wash1 but in order to address vaginal health issues such as dryness or odour, you need to regularly use a product that will help restore the pH balance to the area. Vagisil pH Plus Intimate wash is perfect for this purpose, as it contains natural cranberry extract and LactoPrebiotic™ to help nourish the friendly bacteria that naturally occurs in the vagina and maintain a healthy intimate pH balance through daily use.
MYTH: For your vagina, any soap will do
It’s a big fat no on that one! While some of us have been taught from a young age that soap is the answer to all our body cleansing concerns, when it comes to your intimate area, that’s definitely not the case. While you may love your regular body wash or shower gel, the ingredients within the product are probably not doing your lady garden any favours.
“These products, many of them are alkaline and their pH levels are quite high and our vaginas are very acidic,” explains Dr. O’Shaughnessy. “The idea is to use a product that actually has that acidic pH – they’re much better for the intimate skin areas.”
FACT: You need a specialised wash for your intimate area
When you think about it, we use specialised soap for many different areas of our bodies – for example, shampoo is a form of soap for the hair, and facial cleanser is designed for the face – so it makes sense to use a different product that’s designed specifically for our sensitive intimate area.
Just like we all have different concerns when it comes to our hair and skin, different vaginal issues can require a specific feminine hygiene wash. Vagisil has created a range of intimate washes that can cater to every need, such as the Vagisil Fresh Plus Intimate Wash, which is specifically formulated with Odour Control Technology. It doesn’t just mask odour with a fragrance, it actually helps prevents odour. So no matter what you’re dealing with, there’s an intimate wash to suit your needs.
MYTH: The only way to deal with vaginal dryness is to suffer through it
If you’ve ever experienced vaginal dryness (and according to a recent survey, 23 percent of Australian women have2), you’ll know how bothersome it can be.
But that’s just the thing – you can do something about it! Although a staggering 51 percent of women who have experienced vaginal dryness chose to ignore it and didn’t use a product to treat the problem2, it is possible to combat vaginal dryness. Lack of hydration can cause the intimate skin to become sensitive and uncomfortable, so getting the right balance of moisture is important. Vagisil ProHydrate® Plus Intimate Wash contains ProHydrate® complex – a unique blend of moisturisers including jojoba oil, shea butter and hyaluronic acid which helps keep the intimate areas hydrated, supple and more comfortable.
We hope we’ve helped to bust a few myths about the vagina and feminine health issues with this article. It’s important to know that if you are experiencing an issue, there are steps you can take and products you can use to alleviate the symptoms. Being open about discussing vaginal health helps us women stay informed – because feminine hygiene issues are completely normal and nothing to be ashamed about.
Do you feel comfortable discussing feminine hygiene?
1 beautyheaven Intimate Health Survey 2018
2 Combe 152-116 Feminine Care Report Wave 2, January 2016