Sex and Sexuality

Irritant Information

By Riva Preil

On June 9, we posted a fantastic YouTube video on our website entitled “Detox the Boxâ€, a parody on a popular Justin Timberlake song from Saturday Night Live. This entertaining and informative video encourages viewers to request that Tampax, Always, and Procter and Gamble remove irritants from their feminine hygiene products by signing a petition.

As a pelvic floor physical therapist, I STRONGLY AGREE with their message. Vaginal irritants can cause vulvar and pelvic floor muscle irritation and pain. Natural-fiber pads and unscented products are healthier for the pelvic floor than scented products. Tampons appropriate for a particular menstrual flow should be used (rather than “playing it safe†with a larger than necessary tampon).

While on the topic of vaginal irritants, allow me to take this opportunity to mention several other DOs and DON’Ts


  1. Wear loose fitting underwear that does not restrict blood flow to the groin (due to tight fitting elastic)
  2. Sleep without underwear
  3. Use fragrant free detergents
  4. Use Dove bar soap, Neutrogena, or Basis
  5. Use soft, white, unscented toilet paper
  6. Wear loose/baggy sweatpants during exercise


  1. Don’t wear girdles or support stocking pantyhose– they restrict blood flow to the perineum and limit necessary circulation
  2. Don’t use a douche. EVER. Not pelvic floor friendly, to say the least
  3. Avoid extremely hot water on the vulva
  4. Never use a blow dryer on pubic hair
  5. Avoid toiletries with fragrances, propylene glycol, and sodium lauryl sulfate
  6. Avoid scrubbing the vulva while bathing
  7. Refrain from wearing Spandex, thongs, and wet bathing suits

A happy pelvic floor contributes to a happier YOU! Have you discovered any unique or helpful products on your quest towards vaginal health? Please feel free to comment and share any thoughts you have about products that have contributed your pelvic floor health. The comment that receives the most “likes†on Facebook will receive a prize! And on behalf of your fellow females, please sign the petition to “Detox the Boxâ€!

Get help now from a pelvic floor therapist.

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