Two years ago, I went all organic with my feminine products and it's made a world of difference. My cramps have subsided, and overall my experience with my monthly flow has been great. I went from the girl who could barely exercise on her period to swimming with organic tampons on the heaviest days of my flow monthly. And I was feeling really confident about my new relationship with my vagina until an herbalist suggested that I take the journey one step further and ditch my vaginal wash altogether. It wasn't my first time hearing this conversation before, anyone who's read The Queen V knows that according to Dr. Jackie, all the vagina needs is water. However, I wasn't having it.
Perhaps it was a habit, but I'd been using feminine wash since I got my period. And while swapping out my Always and turning to organic pads/liners wasn't as difficult, this was. I hated the idea of not using anything but water, but COVID-19 made it so that I had no choice but to get to know my vagina. Since quarantine, the company that I used was out of stock for months and it caused me to rely on myself to learn what my body needed. Months in, I'm adjusted and no longer rely on feminine wash.
Here's how I've managed to keep my WAP healthy during these past few months.
I upped my probiotic intake.
Prior to this year, I'd taken probiotics, but not on a consistent basis. Back in college, I was first introduced to them after I perforated my eardrum and had to get on antibiotics, my mother suggested that I take a probiotic to counter the medication. I remembered that in my research that probiotics not only lead to good gut health but taking a probiotic with 1-2 billion CFU per day can help treat vaginal imbalance issues like bacterial vaginosis.
I clean my vagina with my hands as soon as I get in the shower.
As soon as I get in, I clean my hands, and then I clean my vagina. Not using soap has in many ways allowed for me to redefine self-care, because it's the first thing I tend to when I get in. I'm able to examine any ingrown hairs, the scent, and even how my hair on my vagina feels after I'm finished versus before.
I drink ACV water (yes and mind my business).
One of the selling points that I hear most people express is that feminine wash balances your pH, and I get that. One of the most important ingredients in my plant-based feminine wash that I loved was ACV. That said, in order to not miss out on the alkalizing benefits, I add a small amount of apple cider vinegar with mother to my water daily. According to doconline.com, drinking ACV with mother is helpful because when the culture of bacteria is removed during filtration and refining, it results in clear and transparent apple cider vinegar. The healing properties of vinegar are due to acetic acid and other beneficial compounds present in it.
I shower as soon as I work out.
This has been my hardest habit to break, but staying in your workout clothes after you hit the gym is a huge no-no. Women's Health cites that skipping the shower after your body has perspired can result in fungus, and lead to potential yeast infections. Even if it's just a five-minute shower before you get ready for work, take it. Your vagina will thank you later.
While the idea of ditching what is a part of your daily regimen can be scary, the benefits of ditching your go-to feminine wash are filled with opportunities for empowerment and self-discovery so that if, by chance, you experience an issue with your vagina, you don't have anything covering up what you need to address.
Join our xoTribe, an exclusive community dedicated to YOU and your stories and all things xoNecole. Be a part of a growing community of women from all over the world who come together to uplift, inspire, and inform each other on all things related to the glow up. We drop xoNecole events and special opportunities into our Tribe first.
Featured image by Shutterstock