10 Tips For Anti-Aging 'Down There'

10 Tips For Anti-Aging 'Down There'

Hello friend. At our age, we're already quite vigilant about anti-aging skincare routines. For our face, neck, hands. . . but what about for our vagina and labia?

Yes, our Vestie (which is a totally non medical name we at Happy Kitty like to use for this functional and intimate area of our body) is SKIN. And it ages, just like everywhere else.

Did any one ever teach you this? Probably not Ms. Linton your Health Teacher, probably not your mom, either. Why? Because y'all, we just didn't talk about "down there" that way. That is an area for function (menstruation, sex, urination, child birth), not skin care.

There are plenty of things to celebrate as we age. More wisdom. More confidence. More freedom to discover who we are and pursue our passions. . .

But we may also discover that there's stuff we need to call out and find out. This is one of them.

As women enter their late 30s to 50s we start to produce less estrogen, which means skin with less moisture, and less elasticity, which can lead to discomfort and often, pain.

Happy Kitty Inner Skin Hydration is an all-natural, hormone-free way to maintain (looking at you late-thrity-somethings), or regain your comfort, pleasure, and dare we say, freedom. The hyaluronic acid makes it exponentially more hydrating, and it smells like cocoa, too!

If you're already convinced, here's the discount link to purchase your first jar! 

But most of you are here to learn more about the causes, signs and symptoms of vaginal dryness, so grab a glass of water and let's dive in! (LOL. There are so many great ways to play with this!)

What is it?

Not so funny is the term vaginal "atrophy", or "sarcopenia", which is defined as the loss of muscle mass, strength and function in older adults. This break down is caused by the decrease in estrogen levels during peri-menopause and menopause, and can lead to thinning, drying, and inflammation of the vaginal walls.

No wonder we feel uncomfortable! However, whereas in the olden times, we would just be told (by doctors and society) to deal with itchiness, soreness and pain because "that's just the way it is", we now know that we do not have to suffer. Ladies, we deserve to feel awesome as we age, and this definitely includes our Vestie.

A photo of white orchids with the phrase "don't wilt"

1. The Ripple Effect on Sex

As we know, physical effects are tangled up with hormonal, psychological, and relational effects. When the labia and vagina is dry and our skin is not plump and stretchy with collagen and elastin, it can lead to discomfort during sexual activity, which can have a negative impact on libido. Additionally, the lack of natural lubrication can make touch less enjoyable and penetration painful, further decreasing desire. Stress produces a cortisol response, which in turn "eats up" the estrogen that you do still have. From a muscular perspective, the saying "if you don't use it, you loose it" is actually true with respect to keeping your Vestie in shape. All this can also lead to relational drama with your partner. But don't be discouraged! In addition to managing vaginal dryness and restoring libido with a daily moisturizer, you can use water-based lubricants, make lifestyle changes to reduce stress, maintain muscle strength with pelvic floor exercise, and of course share honestly with your partner about how you're feeling about the changes you're experiencing. If it's something you're open to, you can also talk to your doctor about hormone therapy.


2. Choose Your Lube Wisely

Ok, let's talk lubricants -- which are NOT for moisturizing -- they are for slip to make sex more comfortable and fun in the moment. It seems counterproductive, but they can also dry out your delicate skin. Conventional lube with all kinds of synthetic ingredients, like KY, Astroglide, Durex, etc are highly osmotic. That's a scienc-y word that means they draw water out of your skin cells. Make a hard pass on those! Now, what about everyone's favourite all-natural solution, coconut oil? Nope! While coconut oil has many medicinal and healing properties, it is so well absorbed that it actually leaves the surface of your skin dry! So, this leaves your Vestie open to tearing. Another pass. The best lube for vaginal health is natural and water based (which incidentally, also works well with condoms). Tap here for more reading on this topic. While Happy Kitty Inner Skin Hydration is not meant for lubrication, it conditions the skin daily, which in turn may lead to better skin elasticity and more comfortable penetrative sex.


3. Speaking of the Desert

When you get up in the morning after several hours of not blinking or talking, your tear ducts and salivary glands have been sleeping, too. If you start to notice that your eyes, nose, mouth and throat are taking longer than they used to to feel hydrated after waking, even with eye drops and a glass of water, it could be a sign of decreasing estrogen -- or that you need to turn your humidifier on! However, chances are, if you're feeling it upstairs, the same loss of moisture is happening downstairs.


4. Not-So-Funny Toilet Humour

You may not have ever noticed this when you were younger, but wiping yourself after peeing was a smooth affair. The natural sebum (oil) of the labia combined with slippy discharge (a sign of ovulation) made it a non-event. Until one day you notice that toilet paper is chaffing. With multiple wipes a day, the absence of sebum and discharge will result in irritation around your urethra and close neighbours, your clitoris and inner labia. (And how does that translate to your sex life?) Happy Kitty Inner Skin Hydration creates a protective barrier on the skin so you can go pee in peace again. And enjoy other activities.


A photo of ripe peaches with caption "stay juicy".


5. Watch Out for Sneezing on Trampolines

The pelvic floor and vaginal muscles certainly take a walloping during childbirth and can lead to incontinence issues. But because of muscle and tissue decline (aka sarcopenia) as we age, the highest incidence of leaking and incontinence for women happens as we enter peri-menopause and beyond. The positive news is that if you combine pelvic floor exercise (e.g. pilates, or kegel "throne" therapy) with an intimate skin moisturizer that contains hyaluronic acid, you increase your chances of maintaining or repairing your continence. Bye bye pee leaks!

6. Who Drank all the Cranberry Juice?

Buying stock in a cranberry farm, or is your pharmacist on speed dial because you need an Rx refill for another UTI or yeast infection? Are you noticing that your Vestie is not smelling like a rose? The relationship between these issues and vaginal dryness is complex. (Too complex for a paragraph!) So here's the simple connection. With the decrease of estrogen, the muscles and tissue around the urethra are weakened (sarcopenia, again!), and a lack of natural moisture and fertile secretions leave your whole vulva area tissues prone to irritation and inflammation. The dryness also changes the pH of your vulva, which means that the beneficial bacteria microbiome that once thrived down there, will die off. Queue vulnerability to bad bacteria that cause infection and unpleasant odour. (Read more about this here.) So what can you do? Well, along with eating a diet high in pre-biotics (aka fibre that creates a great home for beneficial bacteria), you can also use a vaginal and labial moisturizer that maintains proper pH and creates a protective barrier on the skin (for the good bacteria to live in!)


7. Matters of the Heart

How can your discomfort Down There affect your cardiovascular health? Quite simply, if you feel irritated or inflamed in your pelvic area, you don't dance as much, you don't walk as much, you don't ski, or swim, garden, or downward dog as much. Your heart is depending on you to stay mobile well into your old age, so don't just accept labial and vaginal dryness as a "minor" thing you can just "deal with" as part of getting old. There's a simple, daily solution for it!


8. Drugs and Other Serious Stuff

Cancer treatments and hysterectomies are no laughing matter. Recovery and lifestyle adjustments afterwards are far reaching. If this is your story, you don't need to be reminded of the fact that your body went into immediate menopause. Natural estrogen production is pretty much null, which means that if your doctor hasn't already suggested a vaginal moisturizer, you need to shake your head. Another condition called Sjögren's Syndrome is an autoimmune disorder that causes extreme pain from dryness all over, but especially in the eyes, nose, mouth, labia and vagina.  And finally, common drugs for allergies, depression, hypertension and overactive bladders can have a very drying effect on your tissues. If you fit into any of these categories, a hormone-free vaginal moisturizer with hyaluronic acid is highly recommended.


9. Moody B*@#!

Vaginal dryness can really affect your mood and overall well-being. Let's normalize it, own our agency to do something about it, and be firm in our self worth. You deserve to take time to care for yourself. It can be a simple moisturizer, a soothing bath with colloidal oatmeal, or even a walk in nature that changes our mood. It's important to prioritize self-care and listen to what your body needs, but also don't hesitate to talk to your healthcare provider if you have concerns, as they can offer additional guidance and support. Remember, it's normal to experience changes in our bodies, and there's no need to suffer in silence.


10. Choose Your Own Adventure

Did you choose "Queen of the Jungle", "Run with the wolves", or "Raider of the lost Spark" in the quiz? These options are both silly and true! At this time in our lives, with experience, wisdom, and a strong sense of self, we have a timely opportunity. This is a phase when we can truly come into our own and discover what brings us joy and fulfillment. So, let's embrace this exciting chapter in life with open arms and see where our own adventures take us!

 A photo of a reclining cat belly up with caption "be free".

You're convinced you need hydration, now right? Not all moisturizers are created equal though. Some products have synthetic preservatives, fragrance, colorants, or mineral oil that can irritate your sensitive tissues and make things worse. We don't want any of that nonsense, do we? So be sure to choose a product that's free from these additives to avoid any unnecessary irritation.

Also be sure to choose a product that has hyaluronic acid. It's like a superhero for your skin - it's a naturally occurring substance in the body that helps keep things moist and hydrated. When applied topically, it can work wonders in reducing dryness and discomfort in the vaginal and labial tissues. Think of it like a tall glass of water for your Vestie.

Hmmm. Where can you get some of that? Happy Kitty Inner Skin Hydration at your service, m'am.

So, here's to a happier, healthier you. We deserve to feel great in our bodies, and Vestie care is one powerful tool to make that happen!

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