Whitening of the vagina appears to be the latest trend in vaginal rejuvenation. Although the genitals naturally appear darker than the rest of the body parts, you might be tempted to lighten the tone of your vaginal skin. A number of reasons contribute to the darkening of the genitals, such as hormonal changes, friction with undergarments, excessive use of hair removal creams, talcum powder and so on.

But, does darkness of the vagina really matter? Probably, it is vaginal health and hygiene that matters more regardless of the aesthetics and colour. If you maintain good vaginal hygiene and your vagina is generally free of any symptoms, there is no reason you must care about its colour and fall for any cosmetic treatments.

Anyhow, you can make your vagina whiter by removing hair with the right hair removal agents. This will also facilitate the removal of unwanted dead skin around the vagina, making it appear lighter. You should not opt for other chemical treatments. If at all you use them, it is imperative to be careful while using such products, as the skin of the vagina is very sensitive. You may be allergic to such preparations and may end up having irritation and rashes.

Laser treatment is also a commonly used technique. As with chemical treatments, this process is not 100% safe and may result in scarring. Not to mention that these might be pretty expensive as well. So, do not believe every word in advertisements and trust all products. It is always better to seek advice from your dermatologist or aesthetic gynaecologist and have a complete understanding of the available options, so that you can make an informed decision if at all you opt for it.

  1. Why are the genitals darker than the rest of the body?
  2. What is vaginal whitening?
  3. Is white vagina more desirable?
  4. How to get a lighter vagina?
  5. Risks of vaginal whitening procedures
  6. Takeaway

Discrimination based on skin colour is a global problem. While we proudly say that we are not colour biased, many of us, especially, in countries like India, may believe that fair skin is beautiful. Although it is very unfortunate, this very importance given to fairer skin is the reason that India is one of the largest markets for fairness products. This movement has now spotlighted even the colour of the genitals and has got women thinking about whitening them to make them look more sexually appealing. Following are the reasons that explain the darker colour of genitals:

  • Hormones: The sex hormones secreted in your body are responsible for the production of melanocytes (cells which produce the dark pigment melanin). Oestrogen in women and testosterone in men make the sex organs appear darker, and the change in colour is more obvious as you reach puberty.
  • Friction: Whenever your skin rubs against itself, your garments or any surface continuously, friction occurs, which is responsible for the darkening of the skin. A simple example can be the armpits or elbows which have darker skin than the rest of the body due to friction. Due to similar reasons, the skin of the vagina is also darker than the colour of the rest of your body. Constant friction against the undergarments adds to the darker colour. Tight undergarments can further be a reason for a darker vagina and add on to the problem.
  • Weight gain: Excessive weight gain can increase the friction between the skin and the undergarments and result in the darkening of the vagina. Obesity is also associated with a condition termed acanthosis nigricans, in which the skin turns dark and velvety in the areas of skin fold like the groin and genitals. This is typically seen in women with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOD) and diabetes and is part of the metabolic syndrome.
  • Cosmetics: You may often use talcum powder to beat the sweat in the vaginal area and around the thighs. Constant use of such products may darken the skin in that area.
  • Age: When you are in your 30s, hormonal changes may cause darkening of the labia and vagina.
  • Pregnancy: During pregnancy, darkening of many parts like the armpits, labia, nipples, and the vaginal opening is common due to the hormonal shift.
  • Hereditary factors: You may have darker genitals simply because it runs in your family.
  • Hair removal: Regular and prolonged shaving of hair around the vagina can lead to skin darkening in your genital area. Shaving also tends to leave behind tiny stubbles, which may give the appearance of a darker vagina even if it is not. Same is true with the use of skin care creams, which may not suit you and lead to the darkening of the skin in the area of the vagina.
  • Rashes and Infection: Vaginal infection and rashes in the area can be itchy at times. If you scratch this area to relieve the itch too often, then this might result in darkening due to increased friction. Of course, infections and rashes are a matter of concern in themselves and you must consult your gynaecologist if you experience an intense itch or note a rash.
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It is natural to have darker skin in the genital area compared to your normal skin colour. It is observed that irrespective of a person’s nationality and ethnic origin, the nipples, the area surrounding the nipples (areola), the penis and the vagina appear darker than the rest of the body. However, with the changing trends in cosmetic sciences and beauty, enhancing the beauty of female genitals has gone mainstream.

This enhancement is achieved by lightening the skin of the vagina, also called vaginal whitening in the hope of making it look more attractive and sexually appealing as your skin tone goes down a few shades on the scale. However, these treatments are purely cosmetic and there should be no reason in wanting to change your natural appearance. Anyhow, vaginal whitening can be achieved by some simple beauty treatments in the salon or a cosmetic centre or by some simple do-it-yourself (DIY) hacks.

There has been a revolution in female beauty treatments, and the brightening of the vagina is a part of this cosmetic revolution and the latest trend in vaginal rejuvenation. Some salons pitch these treatments as claiming to enhance your genital health and hygiene. But, little has vaginal colour to do with hygiene as it is biologically made to be a bit darker than your skin. The vagina and labia have a natural dark red to brown colour, which gives a different appearance in different women.

There have been commercials for intimate washes which claim that having a lighter vagina can be more satisfying for your man, which are nothing but colour discriminating and we don’t think your man cares about that. It is a misconception that pink is beautiful; the colour of your genitals has nothing to do with sexual satisfaction. Ultimately, the decision to opt for vaginal whitening is entirely yours, and should not be swayed by survey results or advertisement slogans.

Once you have made up your mind that you wish to have a lighter colour for your vagina, you might start exploring the options available. In just a click, you will see an astounding range of products and procedures available to whiten your vagina. Let’s discuss some of these options in more detail and weigh their worth and effectiveness:

Hair Removal for vaginal whitening

You can go for a simple technique of hair removal, so that the removal of hair along with the dead skin in the vaginal area can make the vagina lighter. Hair removal can be done by one of the following methods.

  • Brazilian wax: You may go for bikini waxing using the Brazilian wax method, and besides getting the hair removed, your vaginal skin will feel fresh and appear lighter in colour due to the removal of dead skin. But, needless to say, the procedure will be extremely painful.
  • Shaving: The handy friend to waxing, you can also regularly shave the groin area to keep it fresh and clean. However, excessive use of razor can darken the skin in the long run and even gives the appearance of dark and short hair, which makes your vagina look darker. To avoid this, you can make the use of a moisturising agent soon after you shave to leave behind soft and smooth skin. Also, shaving when your skin is soft and hydrated like just after a shower is always better.
  • Use of hair removal cream: Using hair removal preparations in the intimate area can make it appear clean and lighter. However, if not chosen properly, the chemicals in the product can be harmful. So, choose your products wisely.


The most widely used product for brightening the vagina is the bleaching cream, also known as whitening or lightening cream. You can use a bleaching cream to lighten the colour of your vagina or to get to a pinker shade from a dark brown. You must now be curious about the products you can use for this purpose. Your genital skin is very sensitive as compared to the skin over the rest of your body. Hence, normal bleaching creams can be irritating to the vagina. Most of the vaginal bleaching creams have mild lightening agents such as azelaic acid, kojic acid and a lesser percentage of hydroquinone. They act by stopping the production of keratin. Here are a few tips for you before you choose a whitening cream for your vagina:

  • Patch test: Perform a patch test on a small area of skin just to check whether the preparation is safe and does not trigger any allergic reaction or rashes.For better results, don’t moisturise the area before application. The cream will spread easily on dry skin than on wet skin.
  • Wash the skin: Before the application of bleaching cream, you should wash the area and pat it dry for better results.
  • Read the instructions clearly: If you are on a do-it-yourself spree, please read the instructions on the package thoroughly before using the product. However, this must only be done after having a word with your doctor.

Home Remedies

Some simple products can also be used to lighten the vagina. However, extreme care must be taken to perform these remedies limiting them only to the external of your genitals avoiding them to seep in as this can cause infections. Best of these remedies are:

  • Oatmeal and yoghurt: You can use this mixture as a gentle scrub to exfoliate dead skin cells.
  • Orange peel powder and yoghurt: You can also remove the layer of dead skin cells over the vaginal area by applying this mixture.
  • Lemon juice: You can apply lemon juice, either in combination with yoghurt or milk, to make the area lighter in colour. Lemon is considered to be a natural bleaching agent.
  • Papaya: Using the pulp of papaya can help. On the other hand, you may try using a papaya soap on the externals of your genitalia.
  • Potatoes: Slices of potatoes have a cleansing and bleaching effect. You can rub potato slices on the skin to make it bright and white.
  • Gram flour: You can prepare a paste of gram flour in milk and apply it gently over the vaginal area regularly to achieve lightening effects.
  • Almond paste: You can also apply a paste of soaked almonds over the affected area. It will both lighten and soften your vaginal skin.

If you experience an itch or an irritation with the use of these products, or notice other symptoms, it is important that you inform your doctor.

Laser Treatment

Carbon dioxide laser is effectively used to lighten the vaginal skin. The laser treatment resurfaces the skin by removing the layer of melanin layer and thereby lightening the skin. Before the laser treatment, you may be advised by the doctor to apply a lightening cream over the vaginal skin, for better results. An aesthetic gynaecologist may be consulted for such treatments.

Tips to avoid excessive darkening

Some tips and timely care can avoid excessive darkening of your vaginal skin:

  • Wear comfortable, cotton undergarments to avoid skin darkening due to friction. Choose clothes that are breathable and loose fitting.
  • Keep a check on your weight as an excessive weight can be a problem for your health as well as your vagina.
  • Go for regular health check-ups, as darkening of the vagina can sometimes be a sign of increased blood sugar levels or an infection.
  • Avoid regular and excessive use of hair removal creams and talcum powder. You may like to switch between products and choose the one that best suits you.
  • There may be many different views about the usefulness of vaginal whitening. Some of them, like certain lightening creams, help soften the vagina and keep it supple in addition to aiding in colour lightening. A clean and better-looking vagina may help to boost your self-esteem.

You should have complete information about how a particular whitening technique works and know about the risks associated with each option you have. Following are some of the risks of vaginal whitening:

  • You may be sensitive or allergic to the bleaching and lightening creams. They may cause rashes, irritation and reddening of skin at the site of application.
  • These treatments can damage the skin and disturb the natural balance of the good bacteria in the vaginal fluids which are responsible for fertility and fighting against pathogens. This may lead to increased vaginal infections and repeated infections may pave way for more serious concerns with the health of your vagina.
  • Laser treatments lead to pain, inflammation and scars.

If you are one of those women fascinated by the beautification of the vagina, as seen in some magazines, and need to go for vaginal whitening, please seek advice from your dermatologist or aesthetic gynaecologist. Remember that none of these treatments has any scientific evidence proving their efficacy. So, take your time and do your research. You must have complete and realistic information about the treatment before you choose an option that safely achieves the desired results. 


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