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Ladies, how do you stay fresh?

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... And I don't mean underarms. I'm talking about further down.

It's not that I have offensive odor down there, but I was wondering if any of you have any "freshening" secrets? I don't want to try anything that I don't know is safe. I have tried washing down there with soap, but of course that lead to a yeast infection.

I'm not asking my unmentionable area to smell like passion fruit and flowers, but am I doomed to smell... not great? :(

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I used to use Summer's Eve Feminine wash and that helped alot. I switched to Burt's Bees body wash recently and I stay fresh the entire day. I wash when I get up and before I go to bed. You can also use baby wipes during the day to keep it fresh, especially in the summer when you sweat more. They make wipes just for that area, I think it's by Vagisil, but baby wipes work just the same.

Yeah, I also have tubs and tubs of baby wipes to stay fresh, and I'll use the special wipes by Summer's Eve, but baby wipes are the same and are cheaper. I've actually started to use baby wipes almost every time I use the restroom.

I walk a lot at work, so I sweat.  I'm not ashamed to wear deodorised panty liners, especially since I'm pregnant and get the occasional blip of discharge now.

I also clean up after every bathroom trip, no matter what comes out, with Cottonelle wipes.  It's so refreshing, like a little shower every time I drop trouser.

keep well trimmed and i would go with the wipes or personally i love the femme fresh products.

ditto on the well trimmed advice, I wax and it makes a difference. I also carry a little travel sized container of baby powder in my purse.

If your system is healthy and well-balanced you shouldn't need to do ANYTHING special to 'stay fresh'... washing with warm water and a little gentle soap when you shower (not anti-bacterial bodywash etc. just regular ivory soap) should be more than enough. The more washes, douches, and personal hygiene products you use, the more likely you are to upset the natural balace and to get a problem that makes you need to keep on using them.

Wait... you don't use soap to wash??

Nope - no soap, no cleansers at all and definitely nothing with any fragrances added.  Ask your OB/GYN.   90% of them now days advise to just cleanse with warm water and a wash cloth, only use soap on really "funky" days, and only then a very mild soap like ivory.   Like kajikit said, anything else can actually upset the natural balance of the very normal "flora and fauna" down there and cause overgrowth of some of them, when in turn leads to odors and/or yeast infections.  

I've been doing this probably 10 years after my sisters repeated "problems" sent her to the GYN who told her this.  She hasn't had a problem since, and with me, I've never had an issue (or any complaint from my hubby for that matter Embarassed)

I think most women sweat down there, and more so if it is hot or they are working hard. Leaving the sweat there, just creates irritation and smell, which is not pleasant. I would love to be one of those lady-like people who just "gently glows" as the Victorians put it, when I get a bit warm. But I'm not. I sweat.

Of course nothing beats a morning shower with carefully applied baby powder. But for follow up clean ups, I second (3rd? 4th?) the baby wipes plan. They are easily portable (baggie or mini dispenser in my purse) and I have tubs at work and at home in the loo too. Like "Celulite" I also use them pretty much every time Igo to the bathroom, for that just washed feeling. Lovely. I personally think that since baby wipes were designed for that area there is nothing wrong with using them. Plus I use fragrance free, hypoallergenic wipes.

In addition I use pantie liners almost every day. There is nothing unhealthy about my discharge (had it checked) but it's there every day and I guess more than most people get? I dunno about that, since it is not something that is usually discussed. Whatever, I just don't like all that 'oogieness' in my knickers. I thought I was the only one who used liners when it's not my period. Don't knock it if it works, right?

EDIT: I've never had a yeast infection or UTI either. You're not supposed to stick the wipes right up in there, ditto powder. Outside only.

Original Post by thmheh:

Nope - no soap, no cleansers at all and definitely nothing with any fragrances added.  Ask your OB/GYN.

I use soap everytime I shower. I've never had any problems or "odor issues". haha

If your body is happy you should not have to to anything to stay fresh.  The more crap you use to create a fresh feeling the worse it will get.  There should be no scent.

1) A dye free, fragrance free, 100% pure soap.  Or warm water with a wash cloth.

2) Cotton underwear.  Changing underwear after every workout.  Not staying in underwear that has moisture.

3) No contact with any fragrances or perfumes whatsover

4) No products with alcohol

5) Taking about 1200 mg of Folic Acid with Acidiophilus pills or eating yogurt (pref. low sugar with live cultures)

6) Drinking lots and LOTS and LOTS of water

I've never had any issues since adopting this.  I stay far away from wipes, washes, things in the feminine hygine isle because they seem to mask the problem and not fix the underlying causes.    This coming from a person who suffered from an annoying case of BV because of medication prescribed to me.  It was a battle and I got tired of popping pills.  Kept it simple and I've never had a problem since.

Hey... This was one of the questions asked on Oprah to Dr. Oz.

Q&A below:

Is douching a good way to stay clean? What should I do to stay clean down there,ect?

Dr. Oz says the vagina is a "self-cleaning oven," and you shouldn't douche to stay clean. "You have your own bacteria in there. They're for you. You're supposed to have them there. When you wipe them out with a vinegar douche, then you're left with repopulating it with whatever happens to be nearby. It may not be what's best for you," he says.

Douching, Dr. Oz says, may even make you more likely to have some problems, such as ectopic pregnancies and infections that can cause infertility. "It's a big problem. That's why I don't think there's any really good reason to douche. Period," Dr. Oz says.

Keeping the vagina clean externally is important, and Dr. Oz says you should always wipe front to back to prevent urinary tract infections. And if you are worried about something in that area, you should go to a doctor and get treatment—Dr. Oz says that covering up problems with a douche won't solve anything.


Grooming- trim/wax/shave/ect. w/e personal method. That's important, imo. )

I use soap and water in the shower and that's it. I've never gone for all the muss and fuss and find that bathing, keeping trimmed, and wearing clean underwear is all I need to "feel fresh."

As a bonus, I have had ONE yeast infection in my entire life (while I was pregnant with son #2), and I do believe it's related to the fact that I don't mess with the way things are supposed to work.

I agree. :)

My sister in law asked me what product I use to stay fresh down there. She about fell down when I told her it's a self-cleaning oven. I told her as long as you're doing the basics it shouldn't be a concern. Grooming, bathing, clean undies/changing undies, wiping correctly, yada yada. I was also informed that it helps if you go pee after after sexual activity, ect. I told her if it's still a concern beyond that to see her doctor.

That's my suggestion to anyone.

Soap and water does it. Maybe unscented douche on especially humid days, but you shouldn't do that regularly.

I drink loads and loads of water and eat healthy....fresh as a daisy and yes I use soap. 

I use soap, but only on the "outside" just warm water and a wash-cloth on the tender bits.  Clean underwear, wiping properly, and trimming helps. 

As others have said it's a "self-cleaning" system.  Doesn't need anything special. 

I've had yeast infections, but only due to being on strong antibiotics for things like sinus or ear infections.  Interestingly, I even had a yeast infection in my ear canal at one point...YUCH!

Urinating after sexual activity is also important for reducing the risks of UTIs.  And I always have to anyway.


The wash I used was "soap-free" but still bubbled up and stuff when I used it. And yes, outside only. Also, if you're not into waxing or being hairless down there, I'm not anyway, you can just take some scissors and a little comb and trim it up nice down there in the shower. Keep the fuzz short as possible, I trim every week, and I've been trimming since I was 15-16ish.

I've never ever cleaned inside, that doesn't even sound pleasant!

If I didn't wash with soap/body wash... it'd be pretty funky down there. :S

Oh like others have suggested with the undies thing, go to sleep pantyless. I was afraid to at first because I feared discharge would go everywhere (yes I exaggerate!) so I just slept in PJ bottoms with no panties. I find that keeps it happy down there, and no discharge! :0 I also only wear cotton panties. Also, if you've been out and about all day and come home, and down there is a bit murky and sweaty, you should change your panties then too. I don't know about other ladies, but I have a bazillion pairs of underwear haha. I get those cheap packs of boyshorts from walmart that have 3-5 pairs in the bag... I have so many. I love boyshorts because it feels like I'm not wearing any undies. :o

My skin is "yeasty" according to my OB/GYN so I'm prone to infections (I've had 3... Embarassed). Yeast infections doesn't just come from messing up the natural cycle, some women create more yeast naturally and there isn't enough of the other bacteria to counter it. I fear when I need to take antibiotics, I always get one, always. =/

I have some powder from Vagisil and I've never put it on my skin, I've always sprinkled it on my panties before putting them on, cause I found my undies would get sweatier than I actually was in the summer, so it kept my panties dry and in turn, myself dry. I use it religiously in the summer. I've also used it on my inner thighs cause unfortunately, I got the "chub rub" issue and in the summer it can be pretty painful.

Edit: I also use it under my boobs. Big boobs + summer heat... yeah. =/

I've never heard this no soap thing. I've use soap all my life, way back when I used to use Zest, but for the last 10 years or so I switched to glycerine and then natural soaps like oilive oil or goat's milk, and I have never had issues "down there" with any of them. I've also never had issues with being smelly, in fact have been told I was delightful that way I dunno maybe it's a genetic thing.

I also drink a lot of water, wear cotton only underwear, sleep nude, and shave (yep, totally off), so that might have something to do with it...I don't know I just take my odor-freeness for granted I guess!

I've heard eating a lot of apples and honey, and staying away from food with a lot of chemicals sort of corrects the PH balance in your whole digestive system and resolves any imbalance that might be causing smells or odd discharges.

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