Hard to believe it’s almost been a year since Gwyneth Paltrow told everyone that they should be “steaming” their vaginas. Remember that?
I do, and quite vividly, because there is nothing that I love more–like, really cherish, truly and deeply–than taking life advice from celebrities and trying to implement it into my own sad, dark little existence so that I might Better Myself. I can’t help it! Celebrities just love spouting advice, and, whether it is good or not, I just love eating it up (symbiosis!). When I was fourteen, I read an interview with Selena Gomez in Girl’s Life magazine in which she discussed her great love for a snack that is literally just lemons sprinkled with salt, and ever since then–despite Selena’s relative irrelevance in terms of anything kitchen-related–I have been eating that very snack.
But, when it comes to the practice of steaming your vagina, even I–a girl who reads Gwyneth Paltrow’s cookbook before I go to bed at night because I find it to be so soothing–know that that is taking it too far. It got me thinking, though–there is a lot of stuff that we all do, vagina-wise (consciously or not), that might not be so great for it. Check out these things that you may or may not do, but definitely are not so awesome for your vag:
Steaming ItJust in case it didn't sink in the first time I said it--please, please do not steam your vagina. While Gwynnie swears that this "cleanses your uterus" and gives you an "energetic release," most experts say that it's really just a good way to mess up your vagina's natural bacteria and get an infection. (Plus, like, I am not about having to maintain my uterus along with everything else that women are expected to keep neat and tidy. I'm onto you, big Vagina Steamer Corporation!!!) Image source:iStock
Taking It SunbathingIn a similar celebrity vagina-advice vein, Shailene Woodley once said that, to keep her vagina healthy, she likes to lay in the (in the nude, I presume) and spread her legs so that her vag can get some Vitamin D. K. So, while Vitamin D is obviously important, you shouldn't have any part of your body out in the sun without sunscreen, let alone your vagina. See, since your vagina spends most of its time covered up (by multiple layers, usually), it doesn't have enough melanin (skin pigment that helps protect skin cells agains UV damage) to protect against the sun's rays. And, if you were going to ask--no, there is not yet a tanning lotion that is suitable to put on your vagina (though I am sure that Shailene Woodley is working on it). Image source:iStock
Using Flavored CondomsObviously, a flavored condom is better than no condom at all. But if you've got a choice, always go with the plain variety--flavored condoms contain sugar, which isn't totally awesome to put in your vag (even if a Real Housewife swears by it), since it can cause a variety of infections and irritations. Image source:iStock
Piercing ItI mean, obviously, it's your body, your vagina, and your choice, so you can pretty much do anything you want with it. At the same time, however, you should be aware that piercing your vag area can cause things like irritation and tearing during sex. Plus, labial and clitoral piercings often aren't regulated, which means that you won't know if the place you're going to has proper hygiene maintenance--which you probably want if you're getting pierced down there. Image source:iStock
Inserting Vodka TamponsVodka tampons--not just a throwaway bit on 30 Rock! You should know enough not to ever have a vodka-soaked tampon anywhere near your nether regions, but apparently, some people have done it. Other than getting really bad alcohol poisoning, it can also cause serious damage to your vaginal membranes.So, if you're ever hanging out with some Bad Influences who say something like, "hey, I know what you can do to make this party/school assembly/seance more fun--dip your tampon in vodka," kindly say, "That's very nice of you, but I will pass today, thanks." And then go and get some new friends, probably. Image source:iStock
DouchingYour vagina cleans itself, so there is really no need to douche, ever. If you must do something, plain, unscented soap and water will work just fine. Image source:iStock
Giving It 'Vajacials'Okay, so this is more of a "personal thing" than anything else, since vajacials--which, if you aren't familiar, is a pricey spa treatment that's like a facial, but for your vagina--aren't dangerous, necessarily. It's just that they're kinda useless. As Jenny Slate--who famously got a vajacial herself--said,"It's A-OK to try new things for your body and to be curious about the world of grooming, but would I suggest a $70 "facial" for your vagina? No. Do you know why? It's more trouble than it's worth." Image source:iStock
Do you do any of these things? Did I forget anything? Let us know in the comments!