Seriously, What’s the Best Way to Clean My Vagina?

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Q: There is a lot of questionable advice and products out there aimed at keeping your vagina healthy and happy. So what’s actually the best way to clean my vagina?

Ah, the perennial vaginal health question. To answer it, we chatted with Mary Jane Minkin, M.D., a clinical professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences at Yale Medical School, and Lauren Streicher, M.D., an associate professor of clinical obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Here’s the deal.

All your vagina really wants is for you to let it do its self-cleaning thing.

Quick reminder: As part of your internal genitalia, your vagina is that muscular tube on the inside of your body. You know, where penetration happens (if you’re into that). Your vulva, which we’ll get to in a bit, includes your external genitalia, like your labia.

“You never wash your vagina under any circumstances,” Dr. Streicher says. “That should never be done.” (Coming out hot! But really, don’t do it.)

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