9 Natural Remedies for Bad Vaginal Odor

January 9, 2019
Although bad vaginal odor is common, if it's very strong or unpleasant, it may be alerting you to an infection or bacterial problem that you should treat.

For many women, having a bad vaginal odor can be embarrassing. However, a change in vaginal odor during menstruation is normal.

The vagina is a humid environment. It’s rich in bacterial flora and fluids that produce moisture and secretions.

These vaginal secretions are a product of the combination of these fluids and bacteria. Sometimes, they can emit a certain smell.

It’s important to clarify that most of these scents are normal, as long as they aren’t excessive.

When you experience vaginal discharge with a bad smell, this may be due to an excessive growth of yeast (fungi) or vaginal bacteria that normally develop in this area.

Bacterial vaginosis (BV) and vaginal candidiasis cause a bad odor in the vagina, and may appear sporadically during a woman’s fertile period.

This isn’t always the case, however. Just as the feet or the breath have a characteristic odor, the vagina has its own smell due to the presence of bacteria.

Vaginal odor is described as a fishy odor and usually presents as or is accompanied by itching and redness of the vagina, yellow or white discharge, burning and irritation.

Causes of bad vaginal odor

9 Natural Remedies for Bad Vaginal Odor

  • Vaginal dryness
  • Frequent douching
  • Bad intimate hygiene, changing sanitary pads or tampons with low frequency
  • Use of products during sexual relations
  • Consumption of certain foods
  • Hormonal causes
  • Wearing tight clothing or keeping on wet clothing
  • Increase in the bacteria that regulate the pH in the vagina
  • Infections
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Rectovaginal fistula
  • Cervical cancer

See also: 6 Steps to Treat Vaginal Yeast Infections Naturally

What causes bad vaginal odor?

Bad vaginal odor can be due to a lack or excess of bacteria that live naturally in the vagina.

When there’s an excessive increase in the bacteria in charge of regulating the pH in the vagina, it causes a very thick gray or yellow flow that decomposes rapidly and generates that bad smell.

The vagina has its own hygiene system, so douching is completely unnecessary.

When it’s not serious, a vaginal infection can be relieved with natural home remedies.

Natural remedies against bad vaginal odor

1. Yogurt

9 Natural Remedies for Bad Vaginal Odor

Yogurt helps to get rid of unpleasant vaginal odor. It’s rich in lactobacilli, which are healthy bacteria that reduce fungal infection in the vagina.

They also contribute restoring the vagina to its normal pH level and eliminating bad odor. You can consume it (at least 2 cups of yogurt every day) or apply it topically.


  • ¼ cup of yogurt (50 g)
  • 1 cotton ball

What should you do?

  • Dip the cotton ball in the yogurt and soak it well.
  • Apply it to the vagina by gently rubbing.
  • Leave it on for 10 minutes
  • Wash with water and dry.
  • Repeat this procedure three or four times a day.

Note: If you’re allergic to dairy products, avoid this remedy.

We recommend: How to Make Homemade Yogurt and All Its Benefits

2. Remedies with garlic

Garlic is an antibacterial spice. Consuming garlic helps you eradicate the harmful bacteria that cause strong vaginal odor.

Practice the following tips:

  • Eat 1 or 2 cloves of raw garlic on an empty stomach and drink a glass of warm water in the morning.
  • Include garlic in your dishes, such as salads and sauces.

3. Apple cider vinegar

9 Natural Remedies for Bad Vaginal Odor

This product has antifungal and antimicrobial properties. It also balances pH levels very effectively.

What should you do?

  • Fill your bathtub with warm water and add 3 cups of apple cider vinegar (750 ml).
  • Sit in this water for 20 or 30 minutes.
  • Repeat this remedy 1 or 2 times a week.
  • If the bad smell is persistent, you can increase it to 4 or 5 times per week.

Other alternatives

  • Dilute some apple cider vinegar with water and rinse your vagina.
  • Soak a tampon in the aforementioned solution (diluted with water) and insert it into the vagina for 30 to 60 minutes.
  • Add 3 tablespoons of vinegar (30 ml) in 1 cup of water (250 ml) and drink daily to balance the pH level of your body.

4. Tea tree oil to get rid of vaginal odors

Tea tree oil is the best known natural antiseptic. It quickly frees the body from germs and bacteria.

Only a few drops of this strong antiseptic and antibacterial oil mixed with a little water are enough to cure your bad vaginal odor.

What should you do?

  • Add 4 or 5 drops of tea tree oil in bath water and soak for 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Then wash with running water and dry yourself.
  • Repeat this procedure 2 or 3 times a week.

5. Baking Soda

Baking soda can also balance your pH level.


  • 1 glass of water (200 ml)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda (5 g)

What should you do?

  • Add the baking soda to the water and wash the genital area.
  • Perform this procedure regularly.

Other alternatives

  • Add half of a cup (75 g) of baking soda to the water in your bathtub and soak for about 20 minutes.
  • This can help treat yeast infection and eliminate vaginal odor.

6. Alum

The antiseptic and astringent properties of the mineral alum are ideal, since they restrict the growth of the bacteria that give rise to the bad smell in the vagina.

What should you do?

  • Mix ¼ to ½ teaspoon (1.25 or 2.5 g) of alum powder in a little water and use this mixture to wash the vagina and the surrounding area.
  • You can also add ¼ teaspoon (1.25 g) of alum powder to a glass of water (200 ml) and take it twice a day.

7. Guava leaves

9 Natural Remedies for Bad Vaginal Odor

Guava leaves have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antibacterial properties, as well as certain beneficial tannins.

The leaves boiled with water provide an excellent solution to cure vaginal discharge and odor problems.


  • 3 tablespoons of guava leaves (30 g)
  • 4 cups of water (1 liter)

What should you do?

  • Add the guava leaves to the liter of water and bring to a boil.
  • Let it infuse until it has been reduced by half.
  • Wait for it to cool, strain it and use that water to wash the vaginal area.
  • Repeat this twice a day.

8. Indian gooseberry

Eating some gooseberries will help you start getting rid of vaginal odor and other infections. This is a natural remedy to treat vaginal discharge that causes bad odor.

Gooseberries can be eaten raw, in a powder mixed with water or even in a dressing.

What should you do?

  • Mix 1 teaspoon (5 g) of gooseberry powder with 1 teaspoon of honey (7.5 g) to make a paste and consume it twice a day, for at least one month.
  • Take 2 tablespoons (20 ml) of gooseberry juice and mix with 1 teaspoon of honey (5 g). Take this mixture twice a day, for a month.

9. Milk and turmeric

9 Natural Remedies for Bad Vaginal Odor

Turmeric is a natural antibacterial that kills bacteria and keeps the vagina protected against viral infections. It’s good for vaginal odor and for dryness in the vagina.


  • 1 spoonful of turmeric powder (10 g)
  • 1 glass of milk (200 ml)

What should you do?

  • Heat the milk and add the turmeric.
  • Mix well and drink
  • Repeat every day until the vaginal odor and infection disappear.

Recommendations that help eliminate bad vaginal odor

  • Drink a lot of water.
  • Don’t consume drinks with caffeine.
  • Avoid highly seasoned and starchy foods.
  • Consume numerous citrus fruits rich in vitamin C.
  • Don’t have unprotected sex.
  • Wear underwear made of breathable cloth, like cotton.
  • During your menstrual cycle, change sanitary pads and tampons frequently.
  • Avoid tight clothing.
  • Wash your outer genital area with neutral soap and plenty of water.
  • Don’t douche.

For whatever reason, bad vaginal odor is always very embarrassing, and it can make us feel constantly uncomfortable and insecure. Don’t let it affect your social life. Reduce it!

If you’re concerned about this condition, consult your doctor, especially if you have other signs and symptoms such as itching, burning, irritation or discharge.