Vag, vagine, lady bits, vajayjay, puss….. you get the point. There are dozens of names out there for vagina, but here's one name you probably never heard of, Yoni. Yoni is the Sanskrit word for female genitalia aka vulva and vagina. One night as I was binge watching Netflix's Too Hot To Handle, I learned about this new term Yoni. In this particular episode, the female participants got the chance to explore their female genitalia, learn to worship their divine femininity and separate themselves from other people's perspectives of their bodies. By the end of the workshop, the ladies developed their own relationship with their Yoni and reflected their feelings about it through art. This got me thinking, when was the last time I actually looked at my vagina? That night I did my own little workshop in my room, got a mirror and just explored. I won't get into detail of what I saw, BUT it was life changing. I’ve been on this earth for 27 years and never really actually looked down there, have you? 

After my life changing moment, I had so many unanswered questions about the female genitalia. I started to think back when I was in school and realized that they really don't teach young women everything they need to know about their bodies. For example: how to properly wash your female genitalia, what to do when you first get your period, pads vs tampons, odor, discharge and even choosing the right underwear. Luckily for me, I had my mother, sister and cousins to answer all my burning questions growing up, but what about the young females who aren't so lucky? So I decided that this would be the perfect opportunity to do some research and jot down some basic things that you may or may have not known about caring for your Yoni. 

  • Vagina vs Vulva
    1. Let's start with the big picture. Ladies, grab your mirror and let's take a look. Technically what you're looking at is NOT your vagina, as the vagina is a muscular canal that connects the vulva to the cervix. What you’re seeing is the vulva which is the female genitalia located outside the vagina. This includes the clitoris, labia (majora & minora), vaginal opening and urethra. 
    2. You may notice that your Yoni does not look like the girls in the “porns”, and that's ok! The female genitalia comes in all different shapes, sizes and colors, so don’t be discouraged if it's not “perfect” and love what God gave you.
    3. And NEVER let a man talk bad about your Yoni!
  • Odor
    1. If your vagina smells like a ray of sunshine and flowers, you really need to lay off the perfume and lotions. Naturally, your vagina will have a slight odor and this is NORMAL! 
    2. You may have also noticed that you “smell” when you're on your period or even after sexual intercourse, but again, this is normal.
    3. Now, if you start smelling “fishy”, I suggest getting that checked out ASAP as it may be a sign of an infection. 
    4. Here are some easy home remedies that will help keep it fresh down there: 
      1. Wearing breathable cotton underwear
      2. Maintaining a healthy diet
      3. Wearing loose fitting clothing
      4. Staying hydrated
      5. Taking probiotics
      6. Avoiding washing your vulva with harsh chemicals
      7. Wiping from front to back
      8. Avoiding hot tubs
      9. Going “commando” at night time
      10. Showering right after a workout 
      11. Pee before and after sex to get rid of bacteria
  • Discharge
    1. Discharge is your body's way of cleaning the inside of your vagina and keeping it healthy. White or milky discharge with no odor is considered normal. However, not all discharge is created equal. It’s important to pay attention to the color, smell, consistency and notify your doctor if you notice any changes. Changes to your discharge may be caused by: harmful soaps, infection, sexual excitement, douching, antibiotics and pregnancy. 
  • Wash
    1. Your vagina is a self cleaning machine so there really is no need to use any harsh chemicals to wash it. Warm water and mild or unscented soap is all you need. Remember to wash the vulva not the vagina.
    2. Avoid spraying perfume and using lotions to mask any smell as you are just causing irritation.
  • Panties
    1. Yes thongs are cute and all, but it can collect fecal matter that can reach the vagina causing odors and infections. 
    2. You should consider switching to cotton underwear as this is more “breathable”.
    3. Don’t forget to wash your new underwear before wearing it.
  • Period 
    1. The million dollar question: which is safer, tampons or pads? Let's start with the risk of wearing tampons. The longer you wear your tampon (appx greater than 8 hours) increases your risk of developing toxic shock syndrome (TSS) which is caused by a bacteria (staphylococcus aureus) that grows out of control and releases a toxin. Even though you're at greater risk of developing TSS while wearing tampons, you can also get it while wearing a pads or using a menstrual cup. In the end, it's really just preference when it comes to wearing a tampon vs a pad. Rule of thumb: change it every few hours or whenever it's soaked.
    2. Try choosing products made with organic cotton and be cautious of products that contain pesticides.
    3. PMS aka premenstrual syndrome is real! This is caused by the hormonal changes your body is going through during your menstrual cycle. This can include: cravings, mood swings, crying more frequently and suddenly, weight gain, bloating, tender/sore breasts and pimples. 
    4. Cramps. A girl's worst enemy. Besides child birth, nothing is worse than that first day of cramps...can I get an Amen? Here are some natural remedies to ease cramps:
      1. Avoid salty foods and dairy as this can worsen your cramps and cause bloating
      2. Use a heating pad/pack on your belly
      3. Exercise
      4. Stay hydrated
      5. Rest
      6. Drink Chamomile or ginger tea
      7. Massage your abdomen

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published