The Sexy Side of Essential Oils

A true essential oil is the lifeblood of the plant. An essential oil contains the unique properties of the plant and transfers them to the human body via living, bioavailable chemical constituents that carry concentrated information inherent in that plant’s make up. This information speaks to our DNA, nourishes our cells, and informs our bodies in very special and supportive ways.

I’m going to talk about two of the delivery methods with which you can use essential oils to help things along when it comes to your libido, hormones, and sexual experience.

One requires you to get yourself a diffuser, for the aromatic benefits of essential oils. This method disperses them into the air to be inhaled, thus impacting your mood in a fascinating way. Diffused essential oils have the ability to bypass your “thinking brain” (frontal cortex) in order to impact your “feeling/emotional brain” (limbic brain). This part of your brain is responsible for emotions such as happiness, peace, sadness and love, as well as impulses like sexual desire. Inhaling essential oils also stimulates the amygdala, which is the centre for our sexual drive, and some oils even have molecules so tiny that they can cross the blood-brain barrier and support healthy oxygen levels around the pineal gland which is associated with hormonal regulation.

So as you can see, there is a pretty good argument for whacking a diffuser in the bedroom and enjoying the benefits it can bring to your nocturnal activities.

The other method is topical, since we absorb essential oils so readily through out skin and in this way can soak up their amazing benefits whilst smelling all kinds of delish!

So without further ado, I’m going to introduce you to a few of the stars in the bedroom and some suggestions about how you can use them to optimise your sex life!

Ylang Ylang:

In Indonesia, the petals of this flower are scattered over the bed of newlywed couples on their wedding night. This is a famous aphrodisiac. It increases libido and sexual energy, and harmonises and balances masculine and feminine energies. Ylang Ylang has a calming effect that can help you relax - which in turn increases your ability to feel pleasure and open into orgasmic states because, as you may know, relaxation and a calm nervous system is essential to female arousal processes.

Pop a few drops in the diffuser, or dilute it with a carrier oil (perhaps some jojoba, sweet almond, or coconut oil) to apply to your inner thighs before heading to bed.

Cypress:

Cypress is a game-changer because of it’s ability to stimulate blood flow and circulation. Consider for a moment that women have just as much erectile tissue as men do in their genitals, and that all of this tissue needs to become engorged with blood through the process of arousal to allow for epic orgasmic pleasure. Does increased blood flow and circulation take on a whole new meaning for you now? It’s important stuff, and Cypress essential oil, diluted and rubbed on your inner thighs will be a winning stroke. Likewise for blood flow to the yoni’s counterpart. Slather up his inner thighs as well; this oil doesn’t discriminate!

Nutmeg:

Nutmeg is a powerful vasodilator too, which means it opens the blood vessels and makes them bigger allowing more blood to flow through them. Remember why we like increased blood flow and circulation? Yep.

It’s also energising, and stimulates both physical and sexual energy so it’s great for stamina. Nutmeg is effective for every gender, but needs to be diluted a LOT as it is very potent. This goes for when you’re diffusing it or applying it to those inner thighs!

Clary Sage:

This oil is fabulous for PMS and helps balance hormones, being especially useful around your moon time.

The libido boosting benefits of this one are due to it’s phytoestrogens which are plant compounds that act like oestrogen in the body in a healthy, safe way. Since we naturally feel more “in the mood” when we are ovulating and oestrogen levels are at their highest, the phytoestrogens in Clary Sage can increase libido and natural lubrication.

Diffuse it, and include it in any oil blends that you use topically on the body - especially inner thighs and below the navel, for optimal proximity!

Orange:

Orange is a fun and bright essential oil that lifts the mood, puts some zing in your bing, and energises the spirit. Orange essential oil is said to open the sacral chakra near the pelvic area which is associated with pleasure, creativity, and sensuality. It’s aphrodisiac properties help de-stress and embrace sexual expressiveness and fun.

Plus it smells zesty and delicious whether diffused or used topically in a base oil.


So those are some top picks to start incorporating into your sexy routine, all of which are quite common, affordable, and easy to acquire as far as essential oils go.

I needn’t remind you that it is essential (ha, see what I did there?) to ensure you only use the highest quality, food grade oils - especially when straying so close to your more delicate zones!

Here’s a little recipe for you to try at home:

(And if you want to try out my homemade, organic Motion Lotion - a natural lube and massage butter - my Menstrual Magic Magnesium Spray, or my breast massage oil feel free to get in touch as I make them in small batches here in Melbourne and can tailor an order to suit your needs.)

A Mood Enhancing Diffuser Blend (for you to use in the bedroom):

3 drops of Jasmine

3 drops of Orange

2 drops of Ylang Ylang

1 drop Clary Sage


the vaginal microbiome

THE VAGINAL MICROBIOME and the vagina/gut connection:


 

Have you experienced the struggles of vaginal dysbiosis, in the form of infections such as Bacterial Vaginosis or Candida overgrowth/Thrush? Believe me, if the answer is yes, you are certainly not alone!

 

These conditions are actually more common than anyone would believe, though because of the sensitive nature of the topic, and the shame shrouding any sort of vagina-related ailment, not many women are too keen on talking openly about it. Fancy that! With attitudes and connotations surrounding even a healthy vagina often straying into the territory of ‘gross’, ‘unclean’, ‘smelly’, and ‘shameful’, it is no wonder we women are reluctant to let on when things aren’t quite right down there.

 

I, myself, had a long battle with vaginal dysbiosis, manifesting in alternating thrush and BV infections for years!

It’s hell, and severely affects your self confidence, sexual expression and drive, and your relationship with your body suffers heavily.

So I get it. Oh, boy, do I get it!

And this experience, this ongoing struggle with my own vagina, led me on a path of research and healing that has resulted in me having quite a bit of information on the topic that I’d like to share with you.

 

Now it’s not the be-all and end-all, and there are MANY things you can do to ensure a happy little vag-emite (only the Aussies will get that one, and I seriously won’t blame you if you don’t approve!).

I’ve written a big old checklist of these ‘Yoni Care’ measures in another post that you can read here.

 

But the main thing I’d like to discuss in this post is the importance of the gut in vaginal health. The gut microbiome is extremely important to all manner of things when it comes to general health and balance in the body, and it also has an effect on the vagina’s microbiome too.

 

Yes, your vagina has it’s own little microbiota, or vaginal community of bacteria, that prefers to exist in harmony with just the right balance of each of the many bacterial strains that coexist in there.

It’s inhabited by a range of microbes from a pool of over 50 species.

Lactobacilli are the most common, particularly in healthy women.

Vaginal microbiota form a mutually beneficial relationship with their host and have major impact on health and disease.

 

When this bacterial balance is tipped in favour of some of the more nasty players, Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) can result. And when other members of the vaginal village - such as yeasts - that are perfectly normal, happy little guys in the right amounts, are allowed to flourish a bit too much, they overthrow the protective bacteria and turn into a real problem - as in the case of candida overgrowth resulting in vaginal thrush.

When the vaginal microbiota is a touch too diverse, the friendly and essential hoard of lactobacillus are edged out of their homes and unable to hold down the fort like they normally do to maintain a nice acidic pH and keep yeast at harmless levels. This tip of the balance in the wrong direction is often what has happened in the case of BV, which is the most common urogenital infection among women of reproductive age. In half the cases of BV, the infection is asymptomatic, so you may not know you even have it.

This is a little scary because having BV can increase the risk of preterm labor and low birth weight, pelvic inflammatory disease, UTI, and increased susceptibility to sexually transmitted disease, including HIV.

 

The reason I mention this is because it’s all about having the right balance of bacteria to maintain a healthy environment within the body. And the gut microbiome can affect the vaginal one through bacteria from the GI tract ‘trans-locating’ (ie. migrating) to an area where it is not supposed to be! In other words, any pathogenic strains of bacteria that are present in the gut, can therefore infect the vaginal tract and disrupt the delicate balance of flora there and this could lead to BV or Thrush.

So looking after the gut is of the utmost importance, not only for the health of the rest of the body, mind, and soul (I mean, heck, the gut manufactures 90% of the body’s serotonin - If that’s not reason enough to take better care of it, I don’t know what is!) but for creating and maintaining vaginal health and balance.

 

Which brings me to my next point.

The most common treatment for BV typically includes antibiotics such as metronidazole. This is very effective at the time of treatment but the recurrence rates of BV are really high, and often once women have gotten rid of the infection for the first time, they will continue to suffer and struggle with re-appearing symptoms intermittently on an ongoing basis for years. Not to mention the effects of the antibiotics on the gut AND vaginal microbial balance, wiping out much of the good bacteria, along with the bad, in one foul swoop.

Therefore it is common for the BV to go away for the moment, but for candida to make itself a problem almost immediately, with women then see-sawing between the two versions of vaginal dysbiosis indefinitely.

Over-the-counter treatments for thrush are similarly short-lived in their effectiveness, with a huge recurrence rate, and an increasing resistance to the drugs in these medications as a result of such frequent use.

 

Clearly the available medical treatment of these infections needs some work!

 

So, if you absolutely have to use antibiotics - and by all means, do your darndest to avoid this if at all possible! - clever use of probiotics is essential to repopulate the vagina (and gut) with the helpful, protective kind of bacteria that belongs there in abundance.

Several scientific studies have shown that the use of antibiotics to get rid of the bad bacteria coupled with pro-biotics to populate the vaginal tract with the right sort of organisms is the most effective - uch more effective than just antibiotics alon.  

To get a tad nerdy on you for a second…(as if I hadn’t already!)

When looking into probiotics, the two most beneficial strains of lactobacillus for the vagina specifically are . rhamnos GR-1 and . reuter RC-14 which have been shown to have the best success at adhering to the epithelium as well as colonising the area and lasting the distance well after treatment has ceased.

Studies have tested both direct vaginal and oral methods of administering probiotics.  Interestingly, the oral method seems to be just as, if not more, effective than vaginal suppositories.

 

A lesser known treatment that many doctors swear by, and that studies have begun to support, is Boric Acid suppositories.

Boric acid is a natural antifungal and antiseptic, and studies have shown that it inhibits the growth of Candida albicans, the strain of yeast behind most cases of the vaginal thrush, as well as other kinds, such as Candida glabrata, an increasingly common cause of infection that tends to be more resistant to other treatments.

The powder, an irritant, should never be applied directly; suppositories are designed for this reason and can be directly inserted inside the vaginal tract for 5 to 7 days.

 

Another possible treatment that is supported by some interesting new research is the use of Saccharomyces boulardii. This little guy has been shown to be helpful in the treatment and prevention of vaginal thrush as it inhibits the adhesive and biofilm forming abilities of Candida Albicans (the main culprit of thrush infections).

S. Boulardii is interesting as it is actually a tropical species of yeast, but it functions in the body like a pro-biotic!

This is pretty cool stuff, and a great start, however there is not enough research data in this field to make a definitive conclusion about whether it is an effective treatment for thrush, and pro-biotics and dietary factors are still the leading approach for any vaginal dysbiosis. But watch this space!


 

So, there you go! The low down on your down low!

I hope this information was helpful, and if you’re left wanting more you can read this article on additional Yoni Care tips, or get in touch with me to ask a question.

You can holla at me or book a private session here or my instagram @ freya_graf_ymt

                                                                                 Vaginal Flora!

                                                                                 Vaginal Flora!