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Almond oil: Is it a safe lubricant for vaginal dryness?

Almond oil is often suggested by people to deal with vaginal dryness. But is it really safe? Here is everything you need to know before using almond oil as a natural lubricant.
Almonds and almond oil as natural lubricant
Know if almond oil is the best natural lubricant. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Shruti Bhattacharya Published: 26 Jun 2024, 05:30 pm IST
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Vaginal dryness is a common problem among women, which is not just uncomfortable but can affect your sex life too. Many people use lubricants to help ease vaginal dryness to make intercourse more comfortable. It helps moisturize it and help you deal with vaginal dryness. One such natural lubricant for vaginal dryness is almond oil! It is not only an effective lubricant but easily available and safe to use. Here’s how you can use almond oil as a lubricant for vaginal dryness and enjoy your sex life to the fullest.

What is vaginal dryness?

Vaginal dryness refers to the condition where the vagina lacks proper lubrication, leading to discomfort or pain during sexual activity or even daily activities. It is often associated with decreased estrogen levels, which can occur during menopause, breastfeeding, or certain medical treatments like chemotherapy. Also, it can be caused by medication, stress, hormonal changes, or insufficient arousal during sexual activity, as per a 2019 study published in Advances in Cosmetic Surgery.

woman with vaginal dryness
Itching is one of the symptoms of vaginal dryness. Image courtesy: Adobe stock

Symptoms of vaginal dryness include:

  • Itching
  • Burning
  • Soreness in the vaginal area
  • Discomfort during intercourse

What are the causes of vaginal dryness?

Here are some of the causes of vaginal dryness, as per a 2019 research in the EPMA Journal.

  • Fluctuations in estrogen levels, particularly during menopause, perimenopause, breastfeeding, or after childbirth, can lead to decreased vaginal lubrication and dryness.
  • Certain medications, such as hormonal contraceptives (birth control pills, patches, or injections), antihistamines, antidepressants, and some chemotherapy drugs, can interfere with vaginal moisture levels.
  • Medical conditions such as Sjögren’s syndrome, autoimmune disorders, diabetes, vaginal infections (such as yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis), and hormonal imbalances (such as thyroid disorders) can affect vaginal lubrication.
  • Stress, anxiety, depression, and relationship issues can impact sexual arousal and vaginal lubrication, leading to dryness during sexual activity.
  • Hormonal fluctuations during the menstrual cycle can affect vaginal moisture levels, with some women experiencing increased dryness before or after menstruation.
  • Harsh soaps, douches, scented feminine hygiene products, and certain laundry detergents can irritate the vaginal tissue and disrupt its natural moisture balance.

Almond oil for vaginal dryness

Many women experience vaginal dryness, which can make sex uncomfortable. While lubricants are readily available, some women prefer natural lubricant options. “Using almond oil as a lubricant for vaginal dryness is generally considered safe for most people. Almond oil is a natural moisturiser that can help alleviate dryness. It has soothing properties and can help reduce irritation and discomfort. It also contains vitamins E and A, which can be beneficial for skin health,” says obstetrician and gynaecologist Dr Madhu Juneja.

Here are some of the benefits of almond oil for vaginal dryness:

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1. Natural moisturiser

Almond oil is an excellent natural moisturiser. It helps to hydrate and soften the vaginal tissues, reducing dryness and discomfort. “Its emollient properties make it effective in restoring moisture and maintaining skin elasticity, which is essential for reducing irritation and enhancing comfort,” explains the expert.

2. Rich in nutrients

Almond oil is rich in vitamins E and A, as well as essential fatty acids, as per a 2019 research published in the Fruit Oils: Chemistry and Functionality book. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect and repair skin cells, promoting overall vaginal health. Vitamin A supports skin regeneration and repair, which can be particularly beneficial for maintaining healthy vaginal tissues.

3. May improve skin elasticity

Regular use of almond oil may improve the elasticity of the vaginal skin. “This is particularly beneficial for post-menopausal women or those who experience dryness due to hormonal changes. Improved elasticity helps in reducing the risk of micro-tears and enhances overall comfort,” says the expert.

4. High in anti-inflammatory properties

According to a 2010 study published in the Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice journal, almond oil has natural soothing and anti-inflammatory properties, which can help reduce irritation, itching, and inflammation associated with vaginal dryness. This makes it a gentle option for those with sensitive skin or who experience discomfort from other lubricants or treatments.

5. Rich in antimicrobial properties

Almond oil has mild antimicrobial properties, which may help protect against infections. “While it’s not a substitute for medical treatments, its antimicrobial action can provide an added layer of protection, reducing the risk of bacterial and fungal infections that can exacerbate dryness,” explains the expert.

How to use almond oil as lubricant?

Here is how to use almond oil as lubricant:

1. Choose the right almond oil

  • Ensure you are using pure, cold-pressed almond oil.
  • Check that the oil is free from additives, fragrances, and other chemicals.
  • Look for high-quality almond oil, ideally labeled for cosmetic or medical use.
Almond oil as natural lubricant
Almond oil is a good natural lubricant. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

2. Perform a patch test

  • Before applying the oil to sensitive areas, do a patch test on a small area of skin (like your inner forearm).
  • Apply a small amount of almond oil and wait for 24 hours to check for any allergic reactions, such as redness, itching, or swelling.

3. Prepare your hands and vaginal area

  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
  • Ensure the vaginal area is clean and dry to prevent any potential infections.

4. Apply properly

  • Pour a small amount of almond oil onto your fingertips.
  • Gently rub your fingers together to warm the oil slightly, making it more comfortable to apply.
  • Apply the oil externally around the vaginal opening and labia. Be gentle to avoid any irritation.

If you need internal lubrication, you can apply a small amount of oil to your fingers or a clean applicator and gently insert it into the vagina. Be cautious and apply only a small amount at first.

5. Aftercare

  • After use, wash your hands thoroughly again.
  • If you experience any discomfort, irritation, or signs of infection (such as unusual discharge or odor), discontinue use and consult a healthcare provider.

Also, keep the following points in mind:

  • If you use latex condoms, remember that almond oil (like all oils) can degrade latex, making the condoms less effective. Consider using non-latex condoms or an alternative lubricant if this is a concern.
  • Monitor how your body responds to the almond oil. Some women may find it suitable for regular use, while others may prefer occasional use.
  • If you have any underlying health conditions, are prone to vaginal infections, or are pregnant, it’s best to consult with a healthcare provider before using almond oil.

What are the side effects of almond oil?

Here are some of the potential side effects of almond oil –

1. Allergic reactions

Individuals with nut allergies may experience allergic reactions to almond oil. Symptoms can include itching, redness, swelling, or rash at the application site. “In severe cases, it could lead to more serious allergic reactions such as difficulty breathing or anaphylaxis,” says the expert.

2. Skin irritation

Although almond oil is generally soothing, some individuals with extremely sensitive skin might experience irritation, especially if the oil contains any additives or impurities.

3. Altered vaginal pH balance

Using almond oil internally can potentially alter the natural pH balance of the vagina. This can increase the risk of infections such as bacterial vaginosis or yeast infections.

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About the Author

Shruti Bhattacharya is a content writer and editor for over 2 years. She specialises in writing on a variety of topics such as wellness, lifestyle, beauty, technology and fashion. Her current focus is on creating factually correct and informative stories for readers. ...Read More

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