Benefits of continued use of intimate skincare products

Woman during intimate skincare

For women in the peri- to postmenopausal years, declining estrogen levels create a changing landscape that affects vulvar and vaginal health. The skin of these delicate structures differs from that in other parts of the body and has different requirements for staying healthy. Here we explore the benefits of continued use of intimate skincare products during this phase of life. 

The First Line of Defense Against Infection 

The vagina and vulva serve as an important barrier against infection. As vaginal secretions decline, the vaginal pH becomes less acidic. It becomes less able to support the beneficial bacteria that comprise the vagina’s unique microbiome. This is particularly important where immune function is concerned. These protective bacteria interact with and support the body’s immune system in various ways.

When the vaginal microbiome alters, that immune barrier can break down, and it may kill off beneficial bacteria. Finally, the process allows pathogens to flourish. 

As women enter perimenopause, loss of estrogen also causes the skin of the vulva and the vagina to become thinner, drier, and less elastic. Eventually, the vulva and vagina produce less natural lubrication. Sex can become painful and cause tearing and bleeding of the intimate skin. This can also lead to increased risk of infection. As a result, vulvar and vaginal hygiene considerations at these phases of life include having an intimate skincare routine to support both immune and sexual health.  

Additionally, the effects of stress, lifestyle practices such as wearing restrictive clothing, and smoking, pose challenges to proper hygiene. Poor dietary choices and the use of certain medications, can also affect the health of the vagina and vulva.   

Healthy Habits for the Intimate Skin 

What habits do experts recommend for a healthy intimate skincare routine? Daily gentle cleansing with water, along with regular use of a water-based personal lubricant and vaginal moisturizer during sex can help support vaginal and vulvar  health. These habits its decrease the risk for irritation, infections, and abnormal discharge.  

Vaginal moisturizers with hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid can help maintain adequate hydration and reduce inflammation. In one study, a hyaluronic acid gel was found to be similar in effectiveness to a hormone cream at reducing vaginal dryness symptoms. You should use these regularly, up to three times per week. A water-based lubricant can be used with each sexual encounter. Personal lubricants that are formulated to have the same pH as vaginal secretions can provide immediate relief of vaginal dryness. They also help make sex more enjoyable while at the same time supporting the vaginal microbiome.  

Mia Vita Personal Lubricant & Moisturizer

Regular use of a personal lubricant/vaginal moisturizer may also be helpful for women who’ve undergone surgical menopause or certain cancer treatments.Personal lubricants/vaginal moisturizers can help alleviate symptoms of vaginal dryness in women being treated for gynecological cancers. If the cancer requires hysterectomy or the use of hormone-blocking agents, the use of personal lubricants is encouraged. In a study involving endometrial cancer survivors, using a moisturizing gel on the intimate skin effectively alleviated symptoms of dryness, pain and improved the women’s sexual function and confidence. For these women, a personal lubricant/vaginal moisturizers may work best when applied more frequently. 3–5 times per week is ideal, rather than 1–2 times per week, as recommended for women undergoing general menopause. Similarly, a study involving breast cancer survivors found that personal lubricant use was particularly helpful for reducing symptoms of vaginal dryness . The pain with intercourse equally reduced. 

Basic Healthcare 

As part of its efforts to promote sexual health and wellbeing among women globally, the World Health Organization supports the use of personal lubricants. The International Society for the Study of Vulvovaginal Disease includes personal lubricants and moisturizers as beneficial options for managing symptoms of postmenopausal vulvovaginal atrophy. They recommend regular use daily or up to every 3 days.  

Hygiene Do’s and Don’ts for Intimate Skin Health  

Do shower daily. Showering is preferable to bathing as it does a better job of rinsing away soap, sweat, dirt, etc.  

Do use a water-based lubricant regularly to maintain a healthy barrier against infection and to make sex more comfortable and enjoyable.  

Don’t use shower gels, bubble bath, deodorants, perfumes or deodorants, herbal ingredients (such as tea tree oil), or douches. All of these can irritate the vulva. Bacterial vaginosis is twice as likely to occur in women who use bubble bath. Women who use antiseptic solutions are three times to suffer bacterial vaginosis. For women who use douching products, they are six times more likely to get bacterial vaginosis.

Don’t use regular bar soaps, as these often have a more alkaline pH and can be drying, which can impact the bacterial balance, cause itching, and increase the risk of infection. 

Don’t use abrasive shower mitts or sponges. 

These daily habits can help you regain and maintain vigorous vaginal and vulvar health throughout the peri -to postmenopausal years. 

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About the author
FemmePharma started as a pharmaceutical research and development company more than 20 years ago. We’ve been reinventing women’s healthcare ever since. Please consult your healthcare practitioner to decide which product best meets your needs.
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