Some people are prepared to do things to their bodies that are unproven, verging on crazy, and even downright dangerous. Vaginal steaming, touted by Gwyneth Paltrow, springs to mind.
But here’s yet another idiotic fashion – again aimed at the vagina – ground up wasp nests. It leaves me speechless.
I’ve traced two online purveyors of this witches’ brew. Online retailer, Etsy, was selling oak galls – nests that house wasp eggs – which, it says, should be ground into a paste for ‘vaginal rejuvenation’. (They are no longer listed).
The website Female Renewal Solution atclaims that oak gall can help prevent cervical cancer and is “all you need” to make the vagina “tighter instantly and overnight”. What is it with the vagina? It’s all quackery.
An oak gall forms when a wasp lays eggs in a leaf bud and the wasp larva develop inside the gall.
Retailers claim the paste will also restore the uterine wall after childbirth, heal an episiotomy cut and clean out the vagina.
However, a Canadian gynaecologist, Dr Jen Gunter, has declared on her blog that it could lead to many side effects – including painful sex, a lack of healthy vaginal bacteria and an increased risk of contracting HIV.
“This product follows the same dangerous pathway of other ‘traditional’ vaginal practices” she says. “Drying the vaginal mucosa increases the risk of abrasions during sex (not good) and destroys the protective mucous layer (not good).
Last year she warned women not to use herbal “womb detox” products because they were risking health problems including toxic shock syndrome. Herbal womb detox pearls are still being sold worldwide by Florida-based firm Embrace Pangaea.
Its site claims the products can help with conditions including endometriosis, ovarian cysts, thrush and fibroids. This is rubbish.
The retailer instructs women to use the bags of perfumed herbs three at a time, for 72 hours. The pearls claim to ‘cleanse the womb and return it to a balance state’ by flushing out toxins.
The firm claims that by tightening the womb, the vaginal canal will shrink and “can result in heightened sexual pleasure”. Or none at all!
For decades I’ve been preaching that the vagina is a self-cleansing organ.
Whatever you hear about cleansing sprays, douches, wipes and disinfectants they’re harmful, disturbing the natural balance within the vagina causing infections, discharge and smell.