It’s called V Beauty and it promises to improve the health and maintenance of our intimate parts. From scrubs, bleaching and intimate oil to sheet masks and lipstick for the labia, vaginal skincare is having a special moment.
With brands like Queen V, Rosebud Woman, The Perfect V, Deo Doc, VMagic, Lady Suite, and Two L(i)ps taking intimate pampering to a whole new level as well as brand new vaginal spas coming to town, time is ripe to strengthen the relationship with our bodies and normalize sexual wellbeing products. A positive shift to make women feel empowered rather than embarrassed about wanting to care and shop for vagina beauty.
Of course, this is not the first time that women are being targeted with unconventional beauty advice. Gwyneth Paltrow, also known as the founder of GOOP, used to recommend vaginal steaming for increasing comfort and reducing cramps.
The question is – do we really need these products?
Having a vaginal skincare routine is not totally necessary as the vulva and vagina are self-sufficient and self-protective, but still, hormonal changes typical of menopause, which can lead to sagging, dryness and soreness, may force women to dedicate extra care to their “sacred space”.
“The vulva needs special attention given the exposure of bacteria, sweat glands, and hair,” explains gynaecologist, women’s health expert, and co-founder of URJA beauty, Dr Sherry Ross. “It needs to be cleaned, hydrated, and moisturized “.
In fact, as we age, our genitalia faces new changes, from a loss in elastin and collagen to physical trauma associated with vaginal childbirth to reduced estrogen. Common feminine health concerns include elasticity and wrinkled appearance of the labia and vulva, low blood flow and sensitivity, pain sensation caused by labial hypertrophy and level of sexual interest and self-esteem.
In this case, once excluded any medical condition with your health care provider, investing in beauty products specially formulated for our intimate areas or in cosmetic no surgical procedures might be an option to explore (have you ever considered the Orgasm Shot to increase your libido?)
According to the American Med Spa Association, vulvar and vaginal moisturizers, in particular, may help hydrate vaginal skin to keep it moist and healthy, just like moisturizers hydrate dry skin on other areas of your body.
“The vagina has 28 layers, and the top layer is shed about every four hours, requiring daily moisturization. Vaginal moisturizers adhere to the vaginal lining and are absorbed into the skin, thereby hydrating it. By maintaining the health of delicate vulvar and vaginal skin, you can help prevent other problems associated with vulvar and vaginal dryness, such as pain, bleeding and increased risk of infections“.
The problem is that with so many products on the market, it can be hard to know what vulvar and vaginal skincare regime to choose.
Amongst the beauty regimens available at “vaginal spas”, the Vajacial (vagina facial) is probably the most popular. A 50-minute spa treatment performed on the vulva of the vagina focused on the bikini line and outer labia. It includes a cleanse, mild enzyme exfoliant, extractions of ingrown hairs, followed by a soothing mask, completed with a skin brightening serum or spot treatment. It treats ingrown hairs, removes dead skin cells, smooths bumps around the bikini line, prevents acne, helps with hyperpigmentation, all to maintain healthy and hydrated skin in the vaginal area.
Once at home, you can count on a plethora of v-beauty products such as PH balancing cleanser and toner, moisturisers enriched with hyaluronic acid, probiotics and CBD, oils for pubic hair, serums, charcoal masks to “detox and soothe your vulva” formulated with aloe vera, witch hazel, chamomile and coconut oil to rejuvenate and hydrate the skin, including a chapstick for your vulva called Feminine Lips Stick, promising to soothe the skin in this delicate area, as the tagline reminds us: ‘Your other lips get chapped too!’
Still sceptical? Lynn Enright, author of ‘Vagina: A Re-education’ has her own opinion.
“Brands may want to be part of the conversation we’re having about our vulvas but to allow them to control the conversation would be deleterious. When a woman looks at her own vulva in the mirror, I want her to feel impressed and lucky and, ultimately, empowered. How do we do that? That’s the question that should be on everyone’s lips“.