10 Ways to Love Your Vagina ...

What better way to honour and express your femininity than to practice ways to love your vagina. If you think your vagina is awesome, then you’ll never stand for anyone who doesn’t think it’s awesome. And, guess what ladies? It IS awesome! So here are 10 ways to love your vagina, as you should!

1. Be Gentle

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One of the first ways to love your vagina is to take care of her very gently. She's a sensitive gal. When cleansing your vagina, the last thing you want to do is expose her to harsh chemicals and perfumes. The vagina is actually self-cleaning ... kind of like an oven ... but not at all! Use water and a mild, preferably natural soap. Your vagina shouldn't smell like flowers, it should smell like a healthy vagina. If your vagina DOES smell like flowers or anything that's *ahem* unpleasant, (or if something unusual is occurring "down there"), please make an appointment to see your gynecologist asap, as you may have an infection that needs treatment! Same cleansing method goes for during your period (which btw you should embrace!) Also, be sure to change your pads, tampons, cups, plates (wait! I think I went one too far!) every couple of hours to keep the natural pH of your vagina balanced. An unbalanced pH leads to infections. Practice healthy hygiene fo r a happy vagina.

2. Dress to Impress but Wear Synthetic Less

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I know! I know! Many of us like to wear fun, flirty panties. But most often these undergarments are made of synthetic fabrics such as polyester and nylon. The warmth and moisture created by these unbreathable fabrics cause bacteria and an overgrowth of yeast to grow. There's nothing fun and flirty about a big yeast infection now is there?! Therefore, if you want to keep things sexy in every way, either purchase cute cotton panties or make sure those frilly panties have a cotton gusset.

3. Let Her Breathe

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Give the lady some space! Like I said, your vagina needs air. Just like you remove your makeup before bed to allow your skin to breathe and renew, you should remove your panties for the same reasons. The less frequently you wear panties 24/7, the better. If Aunt Flo isn't in town for a visit, sleep sans underwear. The only Victoria Secret runway you'll be walking while you sleep will be in your dreams, so panties are pointless!

4. Special "K"

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The other "K". I'm talking Kegels. Developed by Dr. Arnold Kegel in 1948, Kegel exercises strengthen and tighten the pelvic muscles which support the uterus, bladder, small intestine and rectum. Pregnancy, childbirth, being overweight, abdominal surgery and aging, cause the pelvic muscles to weaken creating health risks and problems such as urinary incontinence, uterine prolapse and dysfunction of the Pubococcygeus ("PC" ie: pelvic floor muscle). The cool thing is, unlike other kinds of exercise, you can do Kegels discreetly almost anywhere! You can't do pull-ups on the subway, (okay, you CAN but don't!) but you can do Kegels! So there goes that, "I don't have time" excuse. Identify your PC muscles - the muscles you use to hold in pee - then with an empty bladder, tighten them and hold the contraction for 5 seconds, then release for 5 seconds. Try doing 10 reps, 3 times a day. You can even work up to contracting for 10 seconds, then releasing for 10 seconds. And trust me, just like any other exercise, it is so worth it!

5. Mirror Mirror on the ... Ground

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It's time to start believing that your vagina is "the fairest of them all". And guess what? In order to do that you have to actually look at her! Gasp! It's outrageous how few ladies have seen their own vaginas. Many have allowed it to be the only area on their bodies that's uncharted territory to them, but a downtown dining and entertainment district to others. Ladies, your vagina is yours to discover! Grab a handheld mirror and enjoy the trip! There's a false, manufactured ideology in this world of what our vaginas should look like that convinces many women that their lady parts are ugly, dirty and gross. This brings about shame and insecurity within ourselves. Porn is often the only time you're exposed to what your vulva is "supposed" to look like. Never compare yourself to the distortions of porn. You've got to unlearn that negative stuff perpetuated by society and come face to ... vagina with the truth. Just as all of us are unique in every other way, so are our vaginas. And they are all beautiful. Don't take my word for it though, see for yourself!

6. Master of Your Domain

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Ah, masturbation. You knew I'd have to touch on this subject. Oh, the glorious puns! While you're down there with your mirror you may as masturbate with it ... looking into it that is! I'm a firm believer that your "first time" should be with yourself. You can't expect a partner to know the way you like to be touched if you haven't even discovered it for yourself. Playing solo teaches you what you like and what you dislike, you're always doing it with someone you love - yourself! - AND it allows you to cultivate even MORE self-love and self-respect. Not only will you learn how your vagina wants and needs to be touched, you'll also develop a love and admiration for your body that you will exude and expect to be replicated by your partner.

7. Don't Hesitate to Lubricate

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There are two ways to lubricate your vagina - internally and externally. To keep your vagina hydrated internally, aim to drink 3 litres of water a day. Not only does this hydrate and keep your entire body healthy, it also specifically flushes out bacteria from your urinary tract. To lubricate externally it's best to use a chemical-free, water-based lubricant when using condoms during sex. NEVER use an oil- based lube with condoms or you will risk breakage. HOWEVER, during solo sex or monogamous, safe but condom-free partner sex, my personal favourite lube is coconut oil.

8. Get Some Culture

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You want to maintain good bacteria in your vagina. You can do this by practicing a healthy diet. Eat those fruits and veggies and stay away from sugar as often as you can. Also, incorporate prebiotic and probiotic cultures, as well as fermented foods such as kimchi, kombucha, kefir and miso. You may not be familiar with these foods, but I highly recommend that you check them out. They're delicious and good for you and your vagina!

9. Safe and Sanitary Sex

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Please be respectful of yourself and your health and have safe sex. Use a condom, especially if you're not monogamous. If you are monogamous use a condom or another method of birth control - unless your looking to start a family of course! Your vagina is naturally acidic and sperm is naturally alkaline. Ah, the private parts version of the Venus and Mars opposites! Continue to keep that pH balanced by urinating and washing after sex. This also keeps unwanted, extra moisture away from the area.

10. Pap That

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Make sure you have a great gynecologist and make an appointment to see them for annual check-ups. Gynecological exams generally include an internal and external pelvic exam, a Pap test and a breast examination.

It's amazing how much vaginas can do. They can bring you mind-blowing pleasure one moment, and a human life the next! Part of cultivating a great self-image and body love is the knowledge that you're an all around fabulous female - inside and out! (Pun very much intended!) Show your vagina some much deserved love! Do you have any other ways you show the girl some love?

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