Q: What’s wrong with my vagina? A: It smells.
Let me open with the line you know I’m about to open with. Vaginas do not smell like a basket of roses. Or birthday cake or vanilla or candy or whatever the fuck. Vaginas do (and should) smell... vagina-y. I, like probably many of you, struggled with accepting my natural scent. Mainstream media, product endorsement and fuck boys were not to thank for this journey. Now I’m incredibly thankful for my vaginal smells and I’ll tell you why. Smell is my go-to for checking in on my vagina. I know it’s “normal” smell, so when it’s anything else, I know something is up.
Our vaginas have a million smells and the more you try to get to know them, the better you can serve your vagina and your body. I’m not kidding when I tell you I can smell my period before I get it or “feel” it coming on. Of course, it’s nothing to sweat and I love the heads up.
If your vagina smells particularly funky for more than a few days, here are some things that could be to blame. Yeast infections usually come along with some stinkiness and, well, yeasty-ness BV (bacterial vaginosis) usually is paired with a distinct fishiness. Trichomoniasis, a common and treatable STI can make your vagina a little stinky
More general things to take a look at are your diet and exercise– we all know a vagina can get real ripe after a sweaty workout and of course, it’s no secret that a clean diet can help your vagina smell (and taste!) its best
Finally, sometimes (and truly there’s no judgment on this one) we lodge things up there and forget about them. From tampons and menstrual cups to something used during sex- they can go forgotten. Do a double check in there to make sure everything is cleared out- even if you think you’re all good.
I learned to love my smell because it is an indicator of a healthy and happy vagina. It makes me feel super in tune with my body. Any person, product or idea that wants to change that certainly isn’t worth my time. Anyone smelling or tasting your vagina is incredibly #blessed, so if they have any smell complaints, they can hit the road.•
Molly-Margaret Johnson is a Brooklyn based artist. While she is not a doctor, she is excited to share her vaginal experiences with others in hopes to answer questions and end taboos.
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