Chrissy Teigen‘s commitment to keeping it real just went up a notch.
Having already showed off her post-childbirth mesh underwear and whipped out a breast pump in the middle of date night, the cookbook author and model shared her most intimate motherhood moment yet: treating her private parts to a νaginal steam.
Teigen, who also rocked a face mask and a heating pad for her mini spa moment, isn’t the first celebrity to try out νaginal steaming. Gwyneth Paltrow was among the first to extol the virtues of the treatment, urging her Goop readers in 2015 to experience what she called an “energy release” for themselves.
Fans of νaginal steaming — a centuries-old practice currently having a renaissance thanks to some spas — claim that the treatment can cleanse the uterus and help soothe a number of gynecological issues, as well as anxiety. According to New York City’s YinOva Center, which offers the treatment, hovering over a steamed blend of dried herbs, including mugwort, can “help manage PMS symptoms, uterine cramping, fertility, and peri- and post-menopausal symptoms.”
Having given birth to her son, Miles, in May, Teigen was presumably drawn to claims that the treatment can help new moms with scarring and other postnatal concerns. But according to Dr. Shazia Malik, a London-based consultant obstetrician and gynecologist, Teigen may be wasting her time.
“There is absolutely no evidence that steaming provides any benefit to the νagina, never mind any other reproductive organ in the female body,” Malik told Yahoo Lifestyle. “Nor indeed does the concept follow any scientific theory. The female νagina is a self-cleaning organ with a delicately balanced population of bacteria to keep it healthy at all stages of a woman’s reproductive life. Steaming can at best be relaxing, just as a warm bath might be, and at worst, be frankly dangerous — especially if tried at home. Also, overheating can promote an overgrowth of unhealthy bugs and yeast infections.
“The νagina undergoes profound changes in pregnancy to prepare for birth and also to help it heal afterwards,” she added. “Steaming won’t change that and in no way can the steam get to your uterus or other pelvic organs!”
But Malik does have an all-natural alternative that might help new moms.
“After birth, I ask my patients to sit in a warm bath twice a day with a handful of sea salt and a few drops of tea tree oil, and also to take arnica tablets to promote healing,” she shared. “It works very well most of the time.”
Malik also cautioned that celebrities should be more careful about road-testing treatments that have been debunked by medical experts.
“Role models promoting such treatments might inadvertently be feeding into the notion that somehow the νagina is an unclean organ that needs purifying — when all it really needs is a healthy lifestyle, fresh air, and cotton underwear!” she said.
Read more from Yahoo Lifestyle:
- Huda Beauty accused of shaming women by sharing tips to lighten vaginas: ‘This is a real issue’
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- How Tonya Lee is revolutionizing the way society speaks about black women’s wellness