A Pep Talk About Your Amazing Vagina
Updated: Dec 17, 2019
Design meets functionality in the body’s most fantastic organ
Article by Rachael Hope
Jun 28 2019 at Medium // Grace Health
Phot by W on Unsplash
Psst. Hey, you. Yes, you. I’m here today to talk to you about something amazing.
Spoiler alert: it’s your vagina!
I know, people get red-faced and shy when it comes to talking about vaginas. But really, they are pretty fantastic. Girl, your vagina has skills and features you might not even know about! Women shouldn’t be embarrassed to talk about their vaginas. Close to half the people on earth have them, and we should all be bragging about their design, functionality, and strength!
Your vulva is beautiful!
Vulvas come in all colors and shapes, and yours is perfect just the way it is. Porn star pussies are okay, but most of them are very similar. In real life, longer labia are more common- but whatever the shape of your labia, it’s a great one!
Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash
Vulvas coming in all different colors, some are more stretchy, some are puffy, and some dangle. A sexual partner once told me mine reminded him of a manta ray, and it’s still one of my favorite compliments ever received.
Your vagina is a shapeshifter!
The vagina is like the Elastigirl of body parts. It can have sex and push out 10 pound babies, and still get back in the game and be just as limber as ever. There’s no statistical difference between vagina sizes of people who have or have not had babies. There’s also no correlation between the number of sexual partners you’ve had and the “tightness” of your vagina — if a human baby doesn’t stretch that out, a man’s penis certainly isn’t going to.
The vagina also has the potential to expand to around twice its normal size when aroused. According to Debby Herbenick, Ph.D., associate professor at Indiana University, that’s partially because of vaginal tenting. “When women become aroused, there’s more muscular tension in the body. That muscular tension draws the uterus upward, creating more space in the vagina lengthwise.”
Most vaginas are tilted, usually at roughly a 130-degree angle, but they change over time. The angle flattens, so as you age and experience hormonal changes, sex may feel different. It’s like the gift that keeps on giving!
Your vagina is a great housekeeper!
Like your oven, the vagina is self-cleaning. Using harsh soaps or body washes inside your vagina can wash away the good stuff and alter the natural pH of your lady-cave. Douches are outdated, and shouldn’t be used unless recommended by a medical professional for a specific purpose.
Discharge is normal. Like teardrops, which lubricate your eyes and help keep them clean, discharge helps your vagina stay healthy. Some vaginas are pretty moist — I wear pantiliners daily because I don’t like walking around with a damp crotch. The volume and scent of discharge varies from person to person, and what’s normal for one vagina isn’t necessarily normal for another. The amount, consistency, color, and smell of discharge can also change depending on what time of the month it is, if you’re healthy, and whether you’re on birth control.
Your vagina smells fine.
Vaginas are musky, and that’s super okay! There is actually no part of the human body that is meant to smell like flowers or vanilla. Some vaginas have a stronger scent than others, and it’s nothing to be concerned about unless the odor becomes unpleasant or your discharge has a drastic color or texture change. Don’t forget- adding sperm to your natural brew can change things, so it’s completely normal for your vagina to smell different after sex au natural.
The average vagina has a pH of less than 4.5, making it very strongly acidic. It’s also similar to the pH of wine, which is delicious. Coincidence? I think not! Your vagina is not only an organ, it’s a home for good bacteria called Lactobacilli, which help regulate your pH level and keep out infection-causing bacteria. If you’ve ever noticed fading in your underwear, that’s not a coincidence — your vagina is acidic enough to bleach fabric. Skills!
Your vagina has a secret.
I am 100% sure the clitoris is one of the most fantastic things in existence. The 3-D model to the left was created by a French engineer and sociologist to try to improve “cultural cliteracy.” But it’s not just a pretty face — your clitoris contains 8,000 nerve endings and is the ONLY organ in your body that exists solely for pleasure. Much like a penis, the clitoris becomes erect during sexual arousal, increasing in size by up to 300 percent (more shape-shifting!). Pro-tip: during arousal, experiment with having your partner stimulate the internal part of your clitoris through your labia. It’s not just the tip that’s fun to play with!
Image via The Atlantic
Your vagina is a good communicator.
Throughout your monthly cycle, the secretions produced by your cervix change in consistency and color. Tracking your cervical mucus as your hormone levels rise and fall is one way to engage in sex at the right time to conceive- or judge when to avoid sex when you’re ovulating! Near ovulation, you’ll find what’s known as EWCM (or egg white cervical mucus), not surprisingly, similar in consistency to an egg white- stretchy and slippery. Taking your body temperature each day and checking your cervical mucus is one of the methods used in natural family planning.
Your vagina loves sex as much as you do.
Stimulating your vagina is physically good for you! The health benefits of regular sex- with yourself or with a partner- are plentiful. Sex burns calories, reduces stress, and boosts immunity, but it also keeps your vagina feeling alive and lubricated. As women age, their estrogen levels decrease, and sexual activity can help to keep blood flowing and mitigate some of the changes that come with menopause.
Your vagina adores fresh air!
Silk and lace are fun for special occasions, but wearing them 24/7 can stifle your best pal — she just wants to breathe! Cotton panties and breathable fabrics are best for keeping your vagina healthy.
The moist, warm environment created by unbreathable fabric can breed yeast and bacteria, so most of the time, try to stick to underwear and clothing that let your vulva feel a little breeze. Those pantiliners I mentioned earlier? I make sure to take them off at night to give my vagina the best of both worlds. Doctors often recommend sleeping in the buff to give yourself plenty of aeration!
I’ve never understood why calling someone a pussy is an insult to imply they’re weak. Vaginas are super strong, yo! In fact, your vagina is so fierce that the lubricant it produces contains squalene, a compound also found in the livers of sharks. Calling someone a pussy should be a compliment about their ability to do it all.
Your vagina and your vulva are the tops- shape changing, communicative, pretty, and fun, just like a best pal should be. So next time you’re feeling down, just remember- you’ll always have your vagina, and that alone is something fantastic.