Keeping Your V Pretty: Foods to Prevent Vaginal Rashes and Sores

Updated: Nov 18, 2020

Written by: Mariam Naaz, Professional Food Scientist & Nutritionist

Your vagina is a sensitive and delicate organ in your body. You will find yourself dealing with allergic reactions and rashes if the vagina makes contact with the wrong chemicals. According to Jessica Shepherd, MD (an invasive gynecologic surgeon at Baylor University Medical Centre in Dallas):

“The vaginal mucosa, inside the vagina, is very porous, meaning it absorbs different materials.”

You may expose yourself to chemicals and substances that are unsafe and the resulting allergies can lead to discomfort, pain, irritation, and itching. These are common symptoms which women may experience even in the absence of a yeast infection. Vaginal rashes and sores are painful and can cause a great deal of discomfort, which can affect the quality of life if left untreated.

According to a medical survey, 61% of women experience some degree of itching caused by rashes and sores about 17 times a year. The vaginal rashes can range from mild to severe; the duration of the rash may last days or weeks and in some cases, may spontaneously disappear.


A rash in the vaginal area can present with a variety of symptoms which include the following:

  • The skin and underlying tissues may feel thick or hardened
  • Redness may be present and the skin may appear dry
  • One may see a mild discharge from the genitals
  • Some women may complain of pelvic pain
  • A low-grade fever may be present
  • The lymph nodes may be enlarged
  • Pain during intercourse
  • Discolored skin
  • Blisters, sores, lesions on the skin surrounding the vagina
  • One may even have difficulty with urination

Rashes on the vagina and vulva can be due to the following causes:

  • Psoriasis
  • Herpes simplex
  • Neurodermatitis
  • Lichen sclerosis
  • Allergies to detergent
  • Scabies
  • Lice
  • Vaginitis (trichomoniasis)

Risk Factors For A Rash On the Labia:

There are several factors that cause rashes on Labia (lips around your vagina)

  • Sexual activity without the use of a condom can increase the risk of STDs like syphilis which can cause a vaginal rash
  • Lack of lubrication during sex
  • Allergies
  • Yeast or bacterial infection.
  • Lack of lubrication during sex
  • Allergies
  • Yeast or bacterial infection.
  • Use of dull razors while shaving
  • Use of perfumes and fragrances which can cause skin irritation
  • Vaginal dryness-more common during menopause

Here Are Some Foods That You Can Try to Prevent Vaginal Rashes and Sores:

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is not only useful for cooking food, but it is also healthy for the skin. Research reveals that coconut oil can kill bacteria and fungi that are known to cause vaginal infections. To treat the vaginal infection, apply a few drops of coconut oil, and gently rub it over the skin. This will help ease the symptoms of a rash.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is an effective remedy against all types of infections. Taking a bath with baking soda can help improve the symptoms of skin irritation and vaginal rashes. Baking soda is known to have antifungal properties that can kill bacteria or fungi that cause a rash. Another option is to mix ¼ cup of baking soda in a cup of water and applying the slurry paste to the vaginal area.

Symptom relief is usually immediate. This can be done several times a day. However, it is important not to go overboard with baking soda as it can also cause skin dryness.

Probiotic Foods

Probiotics foods help to promote the growth of healthy bacteria, which in turn helps to fight nasty vaginal infections. Probiotics are generally effective for the maintenance of a healthy vagina as well as the gut.

Common probiotics that can be used to maintain good vaginal health and prevent rashes and sores include kimchi, yogurt, and kombucha.

Essential Oils

There are several essential oils that are effective in preventing vaginal rashes and sores. Oregano and tea tree oil are effective for the management of sores and rashes around the genital areas. These oils have potent antifungal properties that can kill a wide range of fungi and yeast that cause the rashes.

In addition to the above, focus on incorporating these foods to prevent vaginal rashes and sores:

  • Low sugar fruits: Berries, limes, lemons (small servings can be eaten)
  • Nuts and seeds low in molds: Coconut, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, almonds
  • Condiments: Coconut amino, apple cider vinegar, and sauerkraut
  • Do Not use sugar sweeteners like xylitol, stevia, and erythritol.
  • Healthy fats: flax oils, unrefined coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, and sesame oil.
  • Herbs and spices: Garlic, ginger, oregano, rosemary, paprika, black pepper salt, turmeric, and thyme.
  • Non-caffeinated beverages: Filtered water, homemade almond milk, herbal teas, chicory coffee, and water infused with lime and lemon.
  • Some dairy products: organic kefir, plain yogurt, butter, and ghee.
  • High-quality proteins: salmon, turkey, chicken, eggs.

When To See A Healthcare Provider?

If you have developed a vaginal rash, then it is highly recommended that you see a healthcare provider to determine the cause and obtain treatment. While in most cases, the cause of the rash may be obvious to the primary care provider, sometimes a referral to a specialist may be required.

If the cause of the rash is known, then you may be able to self treat depending on its cause. For example, if the rash is related to the type of soap or bubble bath, then the best thing is to avoid the use of that soap. If the vaginal dryness is due to menopause, then you may need to use a moisturizer or a hormonal cream. But in all cases, it is important to first know what the cause of the rash is and how it should be treated.

Self-treatment is only recommended for benign conditions.

Vaginal rashes are treatable, and symptoms can be reduced with certain foods and the use of medications.

In some cases, the symptoms can be managed with medication but the underlying cause cannot be cured. For example, the dryness associated with menopause cannot be cured but the symptoms can be managed with medications and moisturizers, Therefore, it is essential to see a healthcare provider to first identify the cause of the vaginal rash.


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