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Fragrant, Clean…and Irritated: When Harsh Soaps Damage Vaginal Tissues
Kyla, like most women who strive to avoid the horrors of being labeled unclean, showers every day. She’s been using the same soap – a highly fragranced product from her favorite intimate boutique – for a few months. She loves the way the soap suds in the shower, while the matching moisturizer and body spray keep her perfumed for hours.
 
But Kyla’s bath products are not all they seem. Loaded with synthetic dyes and perfumes, they damage her body, causing vaginal itchiness and dryness. “The rest of my body feels silky smooth after the shower,” she says. “My vagina, on the other hand, remains irritated. I don’t get wet before sex, so my boyfriend and I need over-the-counter lubricants to prevent irritation. This problem definitely is impacting my life.”
 
How Soaps Have Changed Throughout The Years
The Babylonians, as research suggests, were the first to use soap in 2800 B.C; meanwhile, in 1500 B.C., Egyptians prepared soap with animal fats and vegetable oils. In seventh century Europe, soap makers expanded on readily available raw materials – like olive oil – to enhance their precious bars. As hygiene became increasingly important throughout the world, more countries continued to prize soap, which achieved commercial success in America during the 1600s. Today, however, soap is nothing more than a mass-produced detergent. All-natural soap is possible to find, but most brands contain significant amounts of skin allergens and irritants.
 
How Is This Possible?
If you’ve ever looked at a “soap” label, you’ve probably seen the hard-to-pronounce words that you have never heard of before. For instance, 3-dimethylamino-propylamine strips the skin – especially the vagina – of its natural oils. This chemical causes the itching so commonly associated with dry skin. The use of soap also causes internal vaginal tissues to lose water, meaning they go from thick and plump to thin and brittle. As a result, the tissues don’t move as well during such activities as exercise and sex.
 
Body soaps and fragrances are not sanctioned by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. While a clear and concise label must be provided on the product, the only exception to soap ingredients is colorant. Manufacturers can therefore use harmful--and even toxic chemicals--when formulating soap.
 
Dry Skin Be Gone
With a little awareness, women can be more pro-active with their body cleansing selections. Rather than reaching for the shower gel or soap that smells pleasing, women should opt for soybean-based products that remain free of dyes and chemicals, and avoid douches, vaginal wipes and powders that promise a “fresh and clean feeling.”
 
When considering a remedy for vaginal dryness, botanical formulas with ingredients like Korean Ginseng and Suma can be effective. (SEE: Herbal Formula for Vaginal Dryness Relief) These ingredients enhance natural lubrication and improve the health of vaginal tissues. To further alleviate discomfort, women should stay hydrated with eight to 10 glasses of water per day, wash with fragrance-free soap and stop smoking.

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Ideas: Women's,Vaginal Dryness,Fragrant

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