Sexy Sex Ed #1- Yoni or Yon-NO?

I blame Gwynyth Paltrow for this…

I’m sure that somewhere, within the past few years, you’ve heard the word yoni. According to Merriam-Webster, Yoni is defined as “a stylized representation of the female genitalia that in Hinduism is a sign of generative power and that symbolizes the goddess Shakti”. Yoni steaming (or V-Steaming) is the practice of squatting or sitting over steaming water that has herbs added to it. Yoni Pearls are small mesh bags filled with herbs that are pearl-shaped. The pearls are then inserted into the vagina for 24-48 hours and are said to provide the vagina with a “detox” or “cleaning”. Sounds like fun, huh? Wrong!


Now… I’m not sure where we got the idea that we need to do so much to our vaginas. I’m sure the origins are rooted in vagina-hate and patriarchy but that’s a conversation for another day. The vagina is the best self-working mechanism that we have. There is NOTHING in this world that can clean and regulate your vagina better than… well, your vagina. While more spiritual than anything, there is NO science that proves that Yoni Pearls or Yoni Steams offer any benefit. If anything, it has been proven that these practices actually do more damage than anything else. Top Gynecologists from around the world vehemently refuse this practice. Why so? Well… there are many reasons! Yoni Steaming can actually cause damage to the vaginal tissue if the water is too hot. Vaginal Tissue is extremely sensitive and exposure to these levels of heat can cause painful damage. Also, exposing the vagina to certain foreign objects and additives can severely alter one’s PH balance and that can cause infections. Even though the products are Natural or Botanical, they still pose a very high risk to the vagina such as killing healthy vaginal bacteria, damage to the mucus layer and it can also increase the risk of transmitting sexually transmitted infections.


It has also been said that Yoni Pearls and Steams “cleanse” the uterus. I’d like to be the first to tell you (or the second or third)— that is physically impossible. Yoni Pearls don’t cleanse anything. While discharge and other tissues may come out once you remove them, removing that material is actually harmful. While we have been taught that you need to smell like nothing and have nothing coming out of your vagina, that’s absurd. What you are removing is actually beneficial to your vagina functioning properly- so leave it there. If it was really a problem, your Dr. would remove it for you. And if your friend told you that she used them and got pregnant right after… Your friend honestly just had good luck. And as for the steam, steam cannot make it through the cervix and into the uterus (Gunter 2019). But... don’t take it solely from me. Do your research. While this is a fad made popular but Celebrities and the like, it’s very dangerous. Some may choose to continue to practice, and while I’d wish you wouldn’t, please be a safe as can be. As Whitney Powell, RN, BSN, a nurse at Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, OH stated so eloquently- “Women are coming into the ED, saying they did those. It allows BV and Yeast Infections to happen because their PH is off. It’s not worth a bill to the ER or OB.”

The more you know, right?