Yoni Vaginal Steaming: What is it? The benefits & How to do it
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Yoni Vaginal Steaming: What is it? The benefits & How to do it safely

Maya Khamala writes a comprehensive guide on yoni steaming and how to safely do it at home.

Even though the yoni stands firm at the centre of so many of life’s main events, from menstruation, to ovulation, sex, and childbirth, we sometimes take it for granted, forgetting that it needs love and nurturing to work in our favor.

Given that the list of pesky symptoms, chronic conditions, and major upsets affecting the vaginal area and reproductive system is long and harrowing (and western medicine often lacks satisfactory answers), it’s only natural that people are turning to yoni steaming for more effective and empowering results. But what is a yoni steam, anyway?

What is vaginal or yoni steaming?

Yoni steaming, also known as vaginal steaming, is a practice in which a woman allows the warmth of herbal steam to waft upward against the exterior of her vulva and into her vagina in order to help heal and balance a variety of health and wellness issues. This vaginal steam treatment is actually an ancient therapy respected by healers worldwide. Thankfully, today, yoni steaming is becoming more recognized as an opportunity to reconnect with the body and regularize menstrual cycles. While some spas offer vaginal steaming services, it can be pricey, and DIY home practices are totally doable with the right tools and preparation.

Did you know? – A yoni steam can increase both circulation and lubrication, increasing your sex drive and helping you get in touch with your arousal.

Benefits of yoni steaming

Yoni steaming is used as a natural remedy for addressing issues associated with the vagina, uterus, and the entire reproductive tract. The tangible, recognized benefits of steaming your vagina include the following:

  • Pain reduction

    Yoni steaming can significantly reduce general pain, cramping, bloating, and exhaustion associated with menstruation or other parts of your monthly cycle.

  • Hormone balancing

    A yoni steaming practice can help balance hormones, regulating irregular, too-heavy, too-light, or absent menstrual cycles, as well as addressing fertility issues and ease symptoms of menopause like dryness or pain during sex.

  • Uterine health

    You can use yoni steaming to detoxify your womb, reduce uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts, uterine weakness, uterine prolapse, and endometriosis—to name a few.

  • Relieves chronic infections

    Many find a yoni steam for yeast infections is an effective way to treat the often chronic condition, as well as help maintain a healthy odor and discharge more generally.

  • Postpartum healing

    Many women do yoni steams to accelerate healing and tone their reproductive systems after birth, or help heal a vaginal tear, an episiotomy, or a C-section scar.

  • Helps heal hemorrhoids

    The anus being in very close proximity to the vagina means that the painful, oftentimes disturbing issue known as hemorrhoids can also benefit from a steamy healing session.

Does vaginal steaming actually work?

Let’s face it. Ever since Gwyneth Paltrow’s endorsement of yoni steaming, the age-old practice has grown exponentially. Now, vaginal steaming is being hailed as the holy grail of self-care acts and yoni steam benefits as modern-day magic. All told, I like the sound of a 30-minute treatment addressing the majority of life’s problems, and naturally, so do lots of other women with problems.

And yet—the medical community has a long and colorful reputation of casting the yoni steam in a negative light, just as it does most natural or “alternative” or DIY therapies. While it is true that there is no scientific research to prove whether vaginal steaming is effective or safe, the same can be said for many natural therapies (most of which do not have adequate research funding—largely because they’re “alternative”). Meanwhile, mountains of helpful anecdotal evidence is often dismissed as irrelevant. Typical mainstream opponents of yoni steaming maintain that the vagina is self cleansing and is therefore not meant to be steam cleaned. However, by this logic, the human body always does what it was made to do and never needs additional support.

The yoni steam herb used on Paltrow’s yoni was mugwort, typically used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat a range of reproductive system problems. A look at several systematic reviews of mugwort found it can help correcting breech pregnancies, but more research officially recognized by the medical community needs to be done.

Personally, I know at least 3 highly badass, competent, well-studied women who run yoni steaming practices of their own and a whole lot of other women who have nothing but positive things to say about them. In fact, one of my closest friends recently told me that her favorite thing about her yoni steaming experience was its ability to simply relax the muscles of her vagina and vulva in a way that she had never experienced before. The result: she felt light and happy. As for myself, I have an appointment next week!

Yoni steaming precautions for safety

  • Pregnancy

    Avoid yoni steaming if you’re pregnant or if trying to conceive. Or—speak with a licensed practitioner on how to best proceed if you’re interested in a yoni steam for fertility.

  • Menstruation

    It’s best to quite literally go with your flow and avoid steaming during your period, opting instead for sessions before and after you menstruate.

  • IUDs

    Avoid yoni steaming if you have an IUD (intrauterine device), as the possible interactions between herbal steam and IUD devices is not understood and may cause adverse reactions.

  • Overheating

    While vaginal steaming is generally safe, it’s smart to avoid doing a yoni steam if there is excess heat in your body due to fever, hot flashes, or night sweats.

  • Essential oils

    Refrain from using essential oils in your steams, as they are typically too harsh for the vagina. Stick with dried or fresh herbs.

  • Consult

    Always speak with a midwife and/or holistic practitioner if you want to steam postpartum, are working to heal severe hormonal issues or infertility, or if you experience side effects like discharge, cramps, or spotting after your yoni steam.

Did you know? – Yoni steaming is an age-old practice that dates back thousands of years in many parts of the world. Reasons for steaming vary. For some Asian cultures, women steam to help retain ‘feminine identity,’ while in some parts of Africa, tightening the vagina and remedying dryness is the focus.

What yoni steam herbs and ingredients should you use and why?

All vaginal steam herbs have unique qualities that make them beneficial for different reasons. Some are drying and others are hydrating. Some shorten your cycle, while others can lengthen it. Sometimes, using an herbal blend can be more effective because many blends are created with total balance in mind—but, ultimately the herb(s) you choose will depend on your specific needs.

The following yoni steam ingredients are some of the best herbs for vaginal steaming:

  • Motherwort & Calendula

    Good for cleansing and supporting the body’s natural ability to release old uterine lining, motherwort and calendula are well-suited to balancing out long cycles with heavy periods and lots of clotting.

    yoni steaming with motherwart
  • Nettle & Raspberry Leaf

    After each period your body needs to replenish, post blood loss. Nettle and raspberry leaf aid in blood building, restoring vital nutrients to your body, and supporting your body’s ability to create new blood cells. They also make wonderful teas!

    rasberry leaf for yoni steam
  • Hibiscus & Lemon Balm

    Most of us take for granted how much water our bodies really need to function optimally, as well as how many things we do dehydrate us daily! Hibiscus and lemon balm are kidney tonics which support the body’s ability to properly recycle fluids so you can stay naturally lubricated.

    hibiscus for vagina steaming
  • Lavender & Sage

    The vagina has its own microbiome, made up of colonies of friendly bacteria that live in harmony with you. If these bacteria become unbalanced (often stemming from an issue with gut health), lavender and sage are disinfecting herbs certain herbs that can help restore harmony.

    yoni steam with lavender
  • Yarrow & Shepherd’s Purse

    Short cycles and spontaneous bleeding are signs of uterine fatigue and can be supported by steaming with Yarrow and Shepherd’s Purse, both antihemorrhagic herbs. However, a pre-formulated herbal blend containing said herbs may be a better way to go to ensure proper proportions.

    shepherds purse for yoni cleansing
  • Oya’s Paradise: Yoni Steam Herbs Blended w/Healing Energy

    This powerful 40-herb blend is great for detoxification, relaxation, and regulating feminine. Specifically blended to naturally help achieve optimal yoni health and alleviate painful bouts of periods and menstruation issues.

    oyas paradise yoni elixir mix
  • Female Rituals: Calming Therapy Yoni Steam Herbs

    This mix of herbs and flowers is formulated to help prevent menstrual cramps, increase fertility, and reduce uterine abnormalities. Made from 100% fresh and herbs and smells wonderfully rich and aromatic.

    yoni herbs

How to safely do yoni steaming at home

While it can be exciting and empowering to plan a DIY yoni steam session from the comfort of your own home, be sure to heed the precautions mentioned above, and carefully adhere to the following steps when doing a yoni steam at home for the very first time.

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to steam your vagina:

  1. Claim your throne

    You need a comfortable chair or stool with a hole in the seat so the steam source can sit below and waft upwards. See our recommended yoni steam seats below.

    how to yoni steam

  2. Herbalize it

    Add a cup full of your chosen yoni steam herbs to a pot of hot water. Simmer (not boil) the herbs for 10 minutes with the lid on.

    yoni herbs for steaming

  3. Let it sink in

    Let your mix cool and steep for 1-5 minutes. Then, pour it into a heat-safe bowl/basin and place it under your holy seat.

    how to do vaginal steaming

  4. Disrobe with delight

    While some prefer to be naked, you only need to undress from the waist down to expose yourself to the magic.

    disrobing before a yoni steam

  5. Take it in

    Sit on your chosen seat for 20-30 minutes. Some prefer to place their basin in the toilet. Maybe this is when you try meditation!

    sitting on yoni chair

  6. Keep it under wraps

    Once sitting, wrap a large, comfy towel around your waist and legs to prevent the potent steam from escaping your DIY setup.

    yoni steaming and meditating

Recommended Yoni Steam Seats & Chairs

  • Budget option: Bath Hip Bath Tub Kit by She-love

    This easy-to-use plastic yoni steam seat can be snapped onto your favorite soon-to-be vaginal steam stool or even your toilet, while holding your chosen yoni steaming mix just below for convenient use. Especially well-suited to those with hemorrhoids.

    she love yoni seat
  • Mid-range option: Portable Yoni Vaginal Steam Seat Stool Box by herBotanics

    This wooden yoni steam seat is comfortable, durable, and sealed against water damage with linseed oil. It also happens to be small enough to be portable so you can easily move it from room to room or even travel with it.

    her botanics yoni chair
  • High-range option: Vaginal Yoni V Steam Sauna Steamer Seat Box by Kitara Love

    Made from lovely red cedar and birch and finished with tung oil, this beautiful yoni steam chair is also equipped to handle longer or advanced steam using a burner. Additionally, side grip handles make for easy mobility.

    kitara love yoni seat

Did you know? – Yoni steaming can help relieve trapped emotions, offering support as you cultivate self-love and work to boost your self-confidence, which can help you get in touch with your creative self. In other words, it might just work for writer’s block!

Improve your vagina health with yoni massage

While there are many invaluable and incredible benefits to yoni steaming, as with any treatment, it may or may not be the best idea for your yoni. Trying it out a reputed spa may be the best route if you’ve never tried it and want a safe, controlled environment and an assurance that you’ll avoid any yoni steam side effects. Also, consider the added benefits of integrating yoni massage methods into your vaginal health routine too. To learn more, check out Karma Tantric’s Ultimate Yoni Guide here.

Maya Khamala is a Montreal-based poet, (copy)writer, editor, and fire-starter interested in all things erotic. She has been a writer at Karma Tantric magazine for some time, exploring some fascinating and informative topics. Connect with her on social channels for more information. | Read More

  1. Lou

    Thank you so much for this Maya. Your details and explanation has by far been the simplest and easiest to follow. I feel 100% more knowledgeable and I can’t wait to try my first steam:))

    • Kelly Karma

      Hello there Lou, I am so pleased to hear that Maya’s article has inspired you to try your first Yoni steam. Good luck with your first attempt and I would highly suggest reading our article on Yoni eggs, they are also a fantastic option to add to your Yoni well-being regime. Thanks, Kelly x

  2. Joanne

    Thanks for this Maya. I had a lot of reservations towards trying vaginal steaming as I have found that many articles on this have left me confused…. Now finally I have found an article that makes sense. Really, informative and this for me, highlights the importance of taking care of our sacred area as women – Joanne

    • Georgia Karma

      Thanks Joanne, so pleased to hear that Maya’s amazing article has helped. x