by Bahar Etminan
Vaginal rejuvenation is no longer a taboo subject. More and more women are opting for rejuvenation procedures to enhance their health, aesthetic appearance and sexuality.
What’s in a name? Plenty, it would seem, if the number of nicknames available to use in place of vagina is anything to go by. Vajayjay was popularised by the talk show queen herself, Oprah Winfrey. Cha-cha, cooch, and — if you can believe it — lady garden, all get a reasonable run. But no matter what you call the vagina, there is certainly no reason to feel shame or embarrassment talking about it.
This is true for discussion about vaginal rejuvenation, too. Vaginal rejuvenation refers to both surgical and non-surgical treatments designed to enhance the functionality and appearance of the vagina. Long treated as taboo, the uptake of vaginal rejuvenation is rising as women become more empowered to fulfil their own needs and desires.
In fact, according to the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery’s Global Aesthetic Survey, vaginal rejuvenation was the fasted growing cosmetic procedure from 2016 to 2017, with a 23 per cent increase.
Here are some of the more common vaginal rejuvenation procedures explained.
A cosmetic surgical procedure, labiaplasty will reduce the size or change the shape of the outside of the vagina (the labia minora or labia majora).
Labiaplasty has become an increasingly popular procedure in recent years, with aesthetic concern the primary driver, although physical or functional concerns are also motivating factors.
“Labiaplasty surgery can greatly enhance the cosmetic appearance of the outer vagina, giving many women greater confidence and self-esteem,” says Dr Alia Nasser from Verve Cosmetic Clinic in Sydney’s Paddington. “Plus, women who experience a painful or irritated labia will often find relief after surgery.”
Labiaplasty uses several different surgical techniques depending on your situation. It costs about $4000 to $4500, plus anaesthetist and hospital fees, and will result in downtime of about one week to 10 days.
The MonaLisa Touch is a game-changing procedure that can improve many of the underlying causes of vaginal atrophy (vaginal ageing). The laser technology works to revitalise the vagina and can help with vaginal dryness, pain during sexual intercourse, urinary incontinence, as well as mild prolapses, recurrent UTIs and loss of elasticity.
The non-surgical, five-minute treatment, which has been used in Australia since 2013, uses heat to stimulate regeneration of the vaginal tissue. It is particularly recommended for pre- and post-menopausal women, as well as after pregnancy and childbirth. There may be minor but temporary post-procedure discomfort, itching or redness. Downtime is minimal, and prices start from $800.
The clue is in the name. Designed for sexual enhancement, the O-Shot can improve natural lubrication, arousal and clitoral sensitivity.
“Many women struggle with sexual intimacy and satisfaction, and this can happen at any stage and age of your life,” explains Dr Nasser. “With this innovative treatment, this can be a problem of the past.”
The simple 15-minute procedure involves having your blood extracted from your arm and reinjected using a special miniature needle into the vaginal tissue around the clitoris. This can help improve lubrication and sensitivity. Results, which can also include less itching and a tighter vaginal opening, can last for up to 18 months. Sexual activity should be avoided for five days after treatment. The O-Shot is approximately $1500 per session.
A study published in the Australia and New Zealand Continence Journal showed that 65 per cent of women and 30 per cent of men suffer from some sort of incontinence. This is where the TeslaChair can help. It’s a non-invasive treatment that requires no surgery or downtime. “Women are increasingly seeking to gain their confidence back, whether it be from ageing or after childbirth,” says Anne Grobler from North Shore Aesthetics. “The ability to laugh, sneeze and run without worrying about leakage after TeslaChair treatments leave women with a new lease on life.” The treatment costs $2500 for 12 sessions. A course of six to 10 treatments is recommended.
As we age, the skin around the labia majora area becomes looser, wrinkled and produces mild discolouration. The Dermapen can help with all of these concerns. The automated micro-needling device penetrates vertically into the skin, stimulating its natural ability to heal while increasing the production of new collagen. This helps brighten and refresh the labia majora and area around the vagina.
Always speak with your doctor about potential contraindications and problems before undergoing any procedure.