The Lingerie Lover’s Guide to Self-Care and Vaginal Health

If you love wearing lingerie, you probably make it a point to care for your underpinnings, in order to ensure they stay in tip top shape. But did you know that there are certain things you should do to care for your body when you wear lingerie often? It’s not life or death, but these tips can help to keep you healthy, and will only enhance your lingerie wearing experience.

I’ve rounded up some of my favorite tried and true tips to keep your bikini area as healthy as can be, so you can put the focus where it should be: your pretty panties! I’m about to get real here for a second, and talk about optimal vaginal health. Obviously, I’m not a doctor, but these are some practices that I include in my body care routine.

1. Use unscented body wash on your genitals. Try something natural like Sliquid Splash. Fragrances can disrupt pH balance, not to mention mess with your body’s natural scent.

2. Towel dry fully, and instead of putting on underwear right away, let your nether regions breathe. Air dry for about an hour or so before putting on panties.

3. If you have sensitive skin, try underthings that are made of 100% cotton or soft bamboo. Make sure your panties have a cotton gusset.

4. Wash your lingerie with an unscented detergent. Scented detergents can disrupt your vagina’s pH levels as it sits against your skin, especially when you sweat. My favorite is Soak Delicates Wash.

5. Don’t use body sprays or spritz perfume on your underwear or vaginal area. It can cause irritation and can be drying if it has alcohol in it. Instead, use a silky dusting powder such as LUSH Silky Underwear.

6. After shaving your bikini area, moisturize your skin with coconut oil to protect from irritation. Be sure to wear a breathable panty after shaving.

7. To refresh and balance your vaginal health and pH, try Yoni Oil. It’s a natural oil and lubricant that can be massaged onto and into the vagina for added softness and pH balancing. It’s also a natural antimicrobial.

8. Keep sugar away from the vagina. This means checking the ingredients on your beloved bathbomb and avoiding the dreaded “edible” underwear. Sugar disrupts the healthy vaginal flora and can cause infection.

9. Keep natural unscented wipes on hand in case you need to freshen up on the go. Try Swipes Unscented Biodegradable Wipes. They’re flushable! Good for your vag and good for the environment.

10. Plain yogurt (my favorite is Greek) is great to add to your diet! It can also be inserted into the vagina if you have an infection. (Use caution. Not everyone will want to do this, but I’ve done it over the years without a problem). Soak a tampon in plain yogurt (plain, not vanilla, double check that it’s unsweetened) and insert it, replacing it throughout the day. Alternatively, you can insert some using an empty medicine dropper or syringe. The lactobacillus in yogurt creates healthy micro-flora in your lady garden and helps stop bad bacteria from growing. Alternatively, you can take it in capsule form, like Jarrow’s Fem-Dophilus.

11. If you want to help your vagina get back to a healthy pH, soak in a warm bath with a few tablespoons of organic, unfiltered apple cider vinegar in the bath. Vinegar helps to balance the vagina. I recommend Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar.

12. The vagina is self-cleaning. There is never any need to douche. This outdated practice can actually force bacteria up into the vaginal canal and cervix. Trust your vag. It’s a magical body part.

This post originally appeared on Scarlet’s Letter

L’Agent Goodies…