The 7 Best Feminine Washes of 2021

Feel fresh and clean

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

First Look

Best Overall: Dove Sensitive Skin Bath Bars at Amazon

"Dove is a go-to choice among dermatologists and health experts because it’s mild, unscented, and designed for sensitive skin."

Best Budget: Basis Sensitive Skin Bar at Amazon

"It’s dermatologist-recommended, and made with soothing chamomile and aloe vera, assuring your skin will be left soft and smooth."

Best for Yeast Infection: CeraVe Hydrating Cleansing Bar Soap at Amazon

"It’s fragrance free, non-comedogenic, non-drying, and non-irritating."

Best Natural: Good Clean Love Balance Moisturizing Wash at Amazon

"Designed to be gentle, free of fragrances, harsh soaps, and parabens."

Best for pH Balance: Love Wellness pH Balancing Cleanser at Amazon

"Designed to guard the vaginal environment, its clean ingredients maintain vaginal pH levels and good bacteria during cleaning."

Best for Odor: Rephresh Odor Eliminating Vaginal Gel at Amazon

"It's designed to relieve discomfort and odor for up to three days and is clinically shown to maintain a healthy vaginal pH level. "

Best for Sensitive Skin: WaterWipes Sensitive Baby Wipes at Amazon

"These easy and convenient to carry wipes are unscented, hypoallergenic, and designed for sensitive skin."

When it comes to caring for your vagina—less is more. There are a myriad of products on the market directed towards feminine care such as douches, sprays, washes and deodorants. But the vagina actually already has a system to clean itself and maintain a healthy pH level. Experts warn that fragrant products loaded with unnecessary ingredients can actually worsen the health of the vaginal area. In fact when it comes to cleansing, all you need is water and mild soap and the vagina takes care of the rest. 

Caring for the vagina, the muscular canal inside the body where menstrual flow and children during childbirth pass through, and the vulva, the outer part around the vagina that include the inner and outer vaginal lips, clitoris and pubic mound, are different. “You do nothing to your vagina. As far as vulva hygiene you don’t need to do a whole lot, mild soap and water is fine,” Lauren Streicher, M.D., clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University, shared with Verywell Health. When it comes to soaps it’s best to use something gentle, fragrance-free, and hypoallergenic, and avoid products loaded with a lot of ingredients. If you have an odor issue, irritation, or discomfort, Dr. Streicher says “the last thing you want to do is cover it up” with products, it’s crucial to see a gynecologist right away for further help.

If you're looking for a healthy feminine wash, here are a few of the best on the market.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Dove Sensitive Skin Bath Bars

Dove Sensitive Skin Bath Bars

Courtesy of Amazon

When showering your vaginal region, it’s important to use a product that’s very light and gentle. Dove is a go-to choice among dermatologists and health experts because it’s mild, unscented, and designed for sensitive skin. It’s easy to use, hypoallergenic and very moisturizing, promising to leave your skin soft and supple.

Experts say to use the least amount of soap possible with warm water when washing and clean the vulva to get rid of debris or odor, but never inside the vagina itself. Dr. Streicher says, “You don’t need a special wash, you don’t need anything, certainly no perfumes,” urging people to stay away from unnecessary products that could lead to irritation. 

Best Budget: Basis Sensitive Skin Bar

Basis Sensitive Skin Bar

Courtesy of Amazon

The Basis Sensitive Skin Bar is a great cleansing option if you’re on a budget because it's one of the purest, mildest soaps on the market. It’s dermatologist-recommended, and made with soothing chamomile and aloe vera, assuring your skin will be left soft and smooth. It’s designed to be used for people with sensitive skin, which applies to your vulva. It’s made with no fragrances, dyes or other harsh ingredients, making it a safe and sensible option to use in the shower.

This soap can also be used all over the body and is a great option for people with flaky dry skin or eczema. This soap should only be used on the outer vulva.

Best for Yeast Infection: CeraVe Hydrating Cleansing Bar Soap

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser Bar

Courtesy of Amazon

Yeast infections take place when there’s an overgrowth of a microscopic yeast called Candida albicans, which already lives in the vagina, and can result in itching, burning, and white, odorless discharge. Yeast infections should be treated with over-the-counter creams, prescription creams or yeast infection pills. When it comes to washing it’s advised to use plain water or a mild, unscented soap to clean and to avoid washing the vaginal area more than once a day to prevent further irritation. 

We suggest CeraVe’s Hydrating Cleansing Bar Soap because it’s fragrance free, non-comedogenic, non-drying, and non-irritating. Plus it’s made with ceramides which help maintain healthy skin and restore the protective skin barrier. It’s gentle ingredients mean it won’t irritate the vaginal area and will keep its skin hydrated and healthy.

Best Natural: Good Clean Love Balance Moisturizing Wash

Good Clean Love Balance Moisturizing Wash

Courtesy of Amazon

If you’re looking for a natural product, Good Clean Love Balance Moisturizing Wash is an all-organic wash designed to be gentle and free of fragrances, harsh soaps, and parabens. This wash features the brand’s patented Bio Match technology which is formulated to work with a woman’s body to promote a healthy vaginal biome and keep maintain a healthy pH balance. It’s designed to cleanse and eliminate odor while moisturizing and soothing sensitive feminine areas with botanical extracts. 

Best for pH Balance: Love Wellness pH Balancing Cleanser

Love Wellness pH Balancing Cleanser

Courtesy of Amazon

What do people mean when they talk about the vagina’s pH balance? pH stands for “potential hydrogen” and measures the acidity of the vaginal environment. Women who are in their reproductive age, meaning between puberty and before menopause, typically have a healthy vaginal pH between 3.8 and 4.5 on the scale of 0 to 14. Intercourse, tampons, and menstruation can all alter the pH level of the vagina. While many products boast to keep the vulva pH balanced, what’s key is to keep the vagina pH balanced, not the external vulva.

Dr. Streicher says “using a vulvar pH wash to get rid of vaginal odor is like using face wash expecting to get rid of bad breath.” Look for a product that won’t disrupt your vagina’s pH level. Love Wellness pH balancing cleanser is designed to guard the vaginal environment and its clean ingredients maintain vaginal pH levels and good bacteria during cleaning. It’s designed to be used externally on the vulva and won’t disrupt vaginal flora (bacteria) and pH levels. Its safe ingredients are gentle on the vulva, unlike other cleansers that can be harsh on this delicate part of the body and actually disrupt your pH levels.

Best for Odor: Rephresh Odor Eliminating Vaginal Gel

RepHresh Odor Eliminating Vaginal Gel

Courtesy of Amazon

In addition to being fresh and clean, vaginal odor is a concern among some women. Vaginal odor occurs most commonly when your vagina’s pH level is not balanced. This is caused by an imbalance in the good bacteria, known as lactobacilli, and bad bacteria, known as gardnerella in your vagina’s ecosystem. When gardnerella is stronger, it can result in a funky smell. These imbalances can be caused by menstruation, intercourse, or hormonal fluctuations. 

To restore the balance a good over-the-counter product is Rephresh, a gel that you put in your vagina, which is designed to relieve discomfort and odor for up to three days and is clinically shown to maintain a healthy vaginal pH level. If Rephresh does not work, see a gynecologist to see if you have a more serious issue.

Best for Sensitive Skin: WaterWipes Sensitive Baby Wipes

WaterWipes Unscented Baby Wipes

Courtesy of Amazon

If you have a sensitive vagina and often get yeast infections and irritation, gynecologists say it’s important to avoid overloading the vagina and vulva with products that could lead to further inflammation. These light WaterWipes, which are designed to be gentle enough for babies, are a great way to wipe the vulva to feel clean and relieve irritation instead of toilet paper.

These wipes are the “world’s purest baby wipes” and boast a seal of approval from the National Eczema Association. They are made of 99.9 percent water and grapefruit seed extract and without formaldehyde, phenols, phthalates, SLS and SLES, lanolin, or other unnecessary additives. These easy and convenient wipes are unscented, hypoallergenic, and designed for sensitive skin, so you can rest easy knowing they won’t lead to irritation.

Final Verdict

In a nutshell, it’s best to use warm water and a gentle, hypoallergenic, fragrance-free soap on your vulva and never use anything inside your vagina when cleaning the vaginal region. We suggest using light soaps like Dove Sensitive Skin Bath Bars and CeraVe Hydrating Cleansing Bar Soap which are both incredibly mild and designed for sensitive skin. Remember to wash the outer vulva, rather than inside the vagina itself, to avoid irritation and pH imbalance.

What to Look for in Feminine Wash Products

pH Balance and Odor

If you’re suffering from an odor or a pH imbalance in your vagina, gynecologists suggest Rephresh Odor Eliminating Vaginal Gel, which is an over-the-counter product designed to restore your pH balance and in turn eliminate any abnormal smells. This gel works for up to three days to relieve any discomfort and odor and will restore a healthy vagina pH level. For more serious issues or if problems persist, consult your doctor. 

Yeast Infection Prevention

Dr. Streicher says: “If you have a yeast infection, you want to avoid anything irritating. Plain water is fine,” when it comes to washing and cleansing. She adds that using WaterWipes Sensitive Baby Wipes instead of toilet paper can help as they’re non-irritating.

Natural Ingredients

There are plenty of cleansing options on the market, and now with more medical awareness about proper vagina care, many of them are natural. Good Clean Love Balance Moisturizing Wash is a great option when looking for natural products because it’s designed to maintain your vagina’s pH levels and won’t disrupt vaginal flora.

"As far as vulva hygiene you don’t need to do a whole lot, mild soap and water is fine.”Lauren Streicher, M.D., clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University

Why Trust Verywell Health?

As a health writer, Marlene Lenthang knows just how important it is to find the right product for your body and mind. Over the years she has written about health crises, vaccines and product guides. She takes careful note of doctor recommendations, medical research and customer reviews in every product review to assure readers can choose quality products and understand the science behind them.

Was this page helpful?