The onset of puberty could be very confusing; what with changes in your body that you do not completely understand, expanding emotions that rise and fall. One minute you are as happy as a lark, the next you are moody and snappy you could bite someone’s head off!
You worry if the cramps should be as painful as this, if that discharge is the right colour, and if your menstrual blood should be this heavy or this light; this thick or this thin, this regular or irregular. You are left with more questions than you have answers for. Well, don’t bother your pretty head, our aim here is to educate and equip you with what you should know.
1. Is Your Vagina Uneven?
Have you truly looked? It might feel funny, but the best way to get comfortable with your vagina is to grab a hand mirror and take a look. Mostly what you’ll see is the vulva (everything on the outside), which can be all shapes, sizes, and colours. So maybe one lip is longer, or it’s a little wrinkly. But don’t sweat it, because those variations are normal, and it’s totally okay if yours looks different from other ones that you’ve seen.
Some girls have a lot of pubic hair and other girls not so much—and what you decide to do with yours is your call. If it makes you feel better to wax or shave, go for it. Not into it? That’s okay, too. There’s no “standard” you need to be following.
3. It Gets Sweaty
Believe it or not, there are tons of sweat glands in your groin, so you might perspire down there even when you’re not working out! Wearing 100 percent cotton underwear, instead of a silky or nylon material will keep you dry, panty liners help too.
4. It Smells
Vaginas have a natural scent, which may be musky, or even metallic-smelling if you have your period. Both are healthy. A strong fishy odour though, could be a sign of an infection. Get checked by your doctor just in case. Don’t try to mask the smell with scented soaps or excessive washing. Over-cleaning can actually hurt you: Scented soaps and shower gels can irritate you down there and cause a nasty infection. All you need to do is wash the outside with warm water (no soap) while you’re in the shower, and you’re good to go.
5. You Have Discharge
It’s normal to have a clear, whitish, or yellowish wet discharge that dries on your undies — and sometimes it can be a lot. Totally NBD (No Big Deal.) The clear-ish discharge you see sometimes is actually your vagina cleaning itself. The only time you need to worry is if it’s grayish, greenish, or chunky—those are signs of something more serious, and you should see your doctor.
6. There are Bumps on Your Vagina
Chances are a bump on your labia (the lips) or vulva (the skin around them) is just a pimple or an ingrown hair. But you should always get it looked at by your doc to make sure—especially if you are sexually active, or have had the bump for more than a few days.
Did we cover the basics for you? You can be sure that we always got your back. Do you have any questions, feel free to get across to us. We love hearing from you.