On the floor, this development in female care merchandise amongst Ok-beauty manufacturers could seem to be an indicator of the flowering of sexual positivity and celebration of girls’s our bodies. Nevertheless, Jiwon suspects there’s something extra sinister behind the entry of huge manufacturers into this market. The truth that feminine washes exist so predominantly is an indication that the Ok magnificence trade employs “shameful advertising,” she says.
Melissa Mauskar, MD, affiliate professor of dermatology, obstetrics, and gynecology, at UT Southwestern Medical Middle, could not agree extra. “We’re taught that vulvas and vaginas are ‘soiled’,” she says. “And if we ‘clear’ it, then we are able to make the itching and the ache go away.”
Vaginas do not have to be clear, although. The medical doctors I interviewed even raised a declare you will have heard earlier than: the vagina is a self-cleaning oven. When wholesome, it is naturally acidic and has a low pH, which protects it from bacterial and yeast overgrowth, says Jill Krapf, MD, an authorized gynecologist / gynecologist who makes a speciality of vulvar ache situations on the Middle for Vulvovaginal Problems in Washington. A.D
It goes with out saying that washing the vaginal space your self with cleansers and different merchandise can remove that pure pH and result in all the pieces you are attempting to keep away from utilizing them: vaginitis, vaginal infections, discharge and pores and skin irritation. They’ll even worsen underlying pores and skin situations and take away the vagina’s pure moisturizers. As a substitute of searching for feminine washes, “Individuals want to speak to their dermatologist or gynecologist if they’ve any issues,” provides Dr. Mauskar.
Jiwon discovered that some Ok-beauty manufacturers had plans to interrupt by way of market saturation with disgrace advertising at a dinner in South Korea in 2017. When requested what the tactic entailed, a person current defined that “it goals. to girls’s insecurities to create an entire new market territory, “says Jiwon. The person proceeded to record a product that dyes the vulvas pink to make them look youthful and extra fascinating to males, for instance. “I assumed it was tremendous violent,” Jiwon tells me, “nevertheless it nonetheless exists anyway.”
Feminine washes had been only the start. Proper now, the market is beginning to flood with “inside scents,” that are fragrances you add to your underwear to supposedly assist your vagina odor higher and scale back itching or discomfort. Advertisements for them are throughout social media, Jiwon says.
After I speak to Dr. Mauskar about these perfumes, she instantly says “Fuck”, earlier than clarifying that fragrances are a few of the commonest causes of allergic reactions on the vulva. Like female washes, inside scents may exacerbate underlying pores and skin situations, corresponding to psoriasis, lichen sclerosus, and atopic dermatitis, and make them tougher to diagnose. And in case you’re actually fearful about vaginal odors, “It is best to see a gynecologist to rule out bacterial vaginosis or different vaginal infections which will want remedy,” as a substitute of attempting to clear it with noxious and worsening odors, Dr. Krapf provides.
Deal with well-being
Yanghee additionally attributes the rise of Ok-beauty’s sexual wellness trade to Koreans’ obsession with well being and wellness. She believes girls, particularly, will take no matter measures they consider will shield their reproductive capabilities, whether or not which means sustaining the pH stability with feminine washes, lubricants and condoms, or in Rael’s case, utilizing natural merchandise to interval, to “have a wholesome womb and vagina,” she explains.