Does My Vagina Smell Healthy? 5 Common Vaginal Odors, Explained

Each woman has different scents throughout the month, with stronger and more subtle variations of unique smell appearing during different parts of the menstrual cycle. In addition, some women naturally emit stronger vaginal odors, while others don’t. sweating heavily or having unprotected sex also changes the smell of the  intimate parts. So, women should not forget that their vagina is supposed to have a smell.

We can say that the scent is a sign that your vagina is healthy and has its pH properly balanced. In several cases, change in smell indicates that something is amiss in that part.

If there is unusual odor coming from your nethers can signal a health problem, like a lost tampon or bacterial vaginosis infection. But also, it may mean that you’ve just finished up your period.

All women should spend some time getting familiar with their scent, so that when it changes, you can notice that. Mostly, when there is scent that signals something is wrong, it is accompanied by other symptoms, such as itching, swelling, discharge or pain while urinating. Here are a few smells you should look out for:

Yeasty / Bread scent

Yeast infections often don’t give off some specific scent, but you’ll notice something is wrong from the other symptoms. Some of the symptoms are thick, white discharge or itchiness. In some cases, a yeast infection will emit a slightly musty, bread – like odor, letting you know that something is off down there. This smell can help you distinguish a yeast infection from bacterial vaginosis or other infections.

Rotten scent

If you notice that your vagina smells like a bag of old trash, go see your doctor as soon as you can. There is a possibility that you have tampon gone astray. A tampon can get lodged near the top of the vagina, but it will stay there until you find it, so don’t worry, it won’t make it’s way to another part of your body on the Magic School Bus

Fishy scent

Fishy scent could be sign of a severe medical problem. An intense fishy smell down there can be a sign of bacterial vaginosis, an infection linked to an imbalance of bacteria in the vagina, or trichomoniasis – a common curable sexually transmitted infection. These two infections give off a fishy scent, sometimes with a white or gray discharge, and both can be cleared up with prescription antibiotics.

Metallic scent

This type of scent is typical for the period right after you’ve had your menstruation, or if you’ve let your partner’s tiny swimmers enter your vagina. Both of these things can change the pH of your vagina, changing the smell. The metallic scent should be temporary, but if you’re noticing it long after your period is gone, check in with your doctor.

Musky scent

If the smell of intimate are is heavier and slightly more musky version of your vagina’s usual scent, in most cases it means that you’ve been sweating a lot, or wearing pants or underwear that were tight with little breathing room. Washing your friend with some mild soap and wearing looser clothing every once in a while should get things back to normal, but this smell doesn’t signify that there is anything medically wrong.

The listed five scents may indicate that something extra is going on downtown, but there are other factors that can influence your scent.

Gottfried notes: “Many women notice after having their periods that there is a different odor”. The natural pH of the vagina is below 4.7, meaning it’s naturally on the acidic side of the scale. During your period, menstrual blood has a pH of 7.4 alters the pH of the vagina, which may change the scent. Semen has a pH level of around 8, so having sex can also leave you with a different smell.

Gottfried explains: “The vagina is a self-cleaning oven”, so there is no ] reason to be concerned. It doesn’t take much to keep your vagina clean and balanced. It naturally excretes discharge to get germs and bacteria out of your body, so it does a pretty good job keeping things clean without you needing to intervene. In general, some warm water and gentle soap is all you need to keep things smelling fresh. If you’re on the go, consider a quick swipe with a pH – balanced, alcohol – free wipe.

Our last advice is to say no to synthetic underwear. It traps in odor and can make you sweat. Cotton is the best choice and in that way you will give to your friend downstairs a little breathing room to keep her happy and healthy.