What Is Vaginal Steaming?
Vaginal steaming (also known as yoni steaming, v steaming, chai-yok, or bajos) is the process of using steam to cleanse your vagina. This usually involves sitting or squatting over a bowl of water that contains a variety of herbs (like rosemary, basil, and mugwort) and essential oils.
This alternative treatment is used to cure or prevent many different ailments, such as cramps, vaginal discharge, and bloating. Some advocates say that it can even improve your fertility, relieve postpartum discomfort, and regulate your period.
The Origins Of Yoni Steaming
You might have heard about vaginal steaming just recently, thanks to celebrity endorsements from alternative wellness gurus like Gwyneth Paltrow. But v steaming is actually an age-old practice that dates back to thousands of years in many different African, Asian, and Central American cultures.
Reasons for vaginal steaming vary across different cultures. For many Asian groups, women steam their vaginas to help retain their feminine identity. In African cultures, vaginal steaming is associated with enhancing male pleasure by tightening the vagina and remedying vaginal dryness.
Where To Get Vaginal Steam Treatments
You can find vaginal steaming as a treatment in many spas and wellness centres. You can find trained healers who promise to “detox and rejuvenate” your snatch through steam machines. Simply search “vaginal steaming near me” to find nearby locations.
Another option – and this is what most women do – is have your own vaginal steaming at home, using a bowl of boiled water and the herbs of your choice. This is, of course, the easier and more affordable option, but it’s also much riskier.
Famous Celebrities Who Have Tried Vaginal Steaming
While vaginal steaming has been around longer than anyone alive today, we can thank a few celebrities for “reintroducing” yoni steaming to the public. Here are just some of the famous personalities who have been associated with vaginal steaming:
- Gwyneth Paltrow
- Chrissy Teigen
- Lucy Hale
- Khloe Kardashian
Benefits Of Vaginal Steaming
According to the proponents of vaginal steaming, the treatment comes with a lot of benefits. These alleged benefits include:
- Reducing menstrual cramps, bloating, and heavy bleeding
- Improving fertility and regulating menstrual cycles
- Decreasing stress and anxiety
- Curing vaginal dryness
- Healing the reproductive system after birth
- Releasing toxins from the womb and body
- Reducing vaginal discharge and treating infections
Aside from the physical benefits, yoni steaming also has emotional and spiritual benefits as well. Tons of women steam their vaginas to tap into their “feminine potential”, release negative emotions, and connect deeply with their bodies.
How To DIY Steam Clean Your Vagina At Home
To steam your vagina at home, you will need the following items:
- A large bowl
- Several cups of water
- A yoni steam chair or a place to comfortably squat
- Herbs and oils of your choice (e.g. lavender, rose, basil, chamomile, wormwood, etc.)
- A towel or blanket
Once you have all of the items prepared, follow these instructions for your DIY v steam:
- Boil water in a large pot.
- Turn off the heat and add your herbs and essential oils, then steep with the lid on for a few minutes.
- Pour the herbed water into your v steam bowl.
- Test the temperature by passing your hand over the bowl. Once it’s cooled slightly (but still steaming), remove your underwear and position yourself above the bowl.
- Drape a towel or blanket over your legs/waist to prevent steam from escaping.
- Steam for 10-15 minutes.
Is Vaginal Steaming Scientifically Proven?
Despite what Gwyneth Paltrow and other alternative health websites would tell you, there is no scientific evidence that vaginal steaming actually works. In fact, ob-gyns agree that vaginal steaming is unnecessary because the vagina is self-cleaning. And most doctors think that it might even be harmful.
First, exposing your vagina to steam and moisture can actually increase your risk of bacterial and yeast infections, especially if you don’t sanitise your equipment properly. Second, hot steam can actually burn the sensitive skin, which can be painful and expensive to treat. Vaginal steam is extra risky for pregnant women because there’s the possibility of affecting the developing fetus or even causing a miscarriage.
The bottom line is that vaginal steaming, while it sounds fascinating and fun, might not be the best idea for your vagina. If you have any issues like excessive cramping or vaginal discharge, your first step should be to see a doctor – not squat over a bowl of steaming herbs.