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5 Things to Look for in a Feminine Cleanser

5 Things to Look for in a Feminine Cleanser

To cleanse or not to cleanse down there? It’s true that many experts advise against practices like douching, arguing that the vagina is a self-cleansing organ. But while this might be true for your vagina, your vulva is a different story: The right cleanser (or feminine wash) can help clear away sweat and buildup, keeping your intimate area fresh and odor-free.

That said, not all feminine washes are created equal—our skin and vaginal microbiome are both delicate, and certain ingredients can cause irritation, disrupt the equilibrium, or both. 

Below, we break down exactly what to look for in a feminine cleanser—and what to avoid.

1. Choose a vulva cleanser, spray, or wipes—not a douche. 

Douching is the act of cleaning the inside of your vagina with water or a cleanser. It might seem like a way to be thorough while cleansing the rest of your body. But research shows that douching doesn’t provide much benefit, and can even cause irritation or raise the risk of infection. You’re better off sticking to the skin outside your vagina, aka your vulva.

2. Look for a product specifically created for your vulva.



Read: Don’t just lather up your typical body wash and call it a day. The skin around your vagina is very delicate, prone to irritation and simply requires different care than your standard, all-in-one cleanser. That’s not even to mention your vaginal microbiome: the ecosystem of bacteria that’s directly tied to your intimate health. Our vaginal pH typically ranges from 4.0 to 4.5—whereas the normal range for the rest of our skin hovers between 4.7 and 5.75. If we introduce an ingredient made for our other skin, this can actually shift our vaginal pH, which can throw the whole ecosystem off-balance—making us more prone to bacterial infections, yeast infections and odor.

A high quality feminine cleanser keeps your optimal vaginal pH in mind, so that the good bacteria in your vagina can continue to thrive.

    3. Avoid ingredients that can cause irritation.


    Synthetic fragrances and additives are a good idea to avoid in general, but that’s especially true for your vulva, which can be especially prone to inflammation, itching, and redness. Plus, it’s worth noting that your vagina is lined with mucus membranes that are shown to be highly absorptive—your vulva is directly connected to these mucosal walls, so keeping any irritating ingredients out of the general area is a good idea. 

    Hot tip: Foaming ingredients tend to dry out skin, so stick to basic, hydrating formulas made specifically for your vulva.

    4. Don’t just cleanse—moisturize.



    A healthy vulva isn’t just about cleanliness—just as it is for anywhere else on your body, hydration also plays an essential role in skin health. We formulated our Hydrating Intimate Cleansing Gel with exactly this in mind. In addition to TCM-revered ingredients like organic skullcap, honeysuckle, chrysanthemum, and Chinese violet herb extract (all of which have been used to fight irritation and inflammation for centuries), our Cleansing Gel also contains our type III collagen, an easy-to-absorb collagen formula that support elasticity and promotes hydration.

      5. Don’t overdo it.



      When it comes to cleansing your vulva, there is such thing as too much of a good thing—cleansing too often, or using too much product can disrupt the vaginal microbiome or cause irritation.

      With our Hydrating Intimate Cleansing Gel, we recommend just using a quarter size pump every time your shower—that’s it. And rest assured that we made our formula gentle enough to use daily—in fact, when testing our Cleansing Gel in a trial, 100% of participants noted zero irritation or redness after seven days of consecutive usage.

        Dealing with vaginal dryness? Follow these 3 tips to restore balance.

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