TikTok has given rise to many strange trends, many of which involve strategies for seducing people romantically and/or sexually. Sometimes it involves makeup tricks, like the popular “siren eyes,” and other times it suggests using body fluids.
Vabbing, which is a mashup of the words “vagina” and “dabbing,” is probably something you’ve heard of if you’re active on TikTok since, well, that’s basically what it implies. In order to attract a potential partner, vabbing involves collecting the discharge from your vagina and dabbing it on your pulse points, such as the area behind your ears and on your wrists.
The virality of vabbing has spurred numerous discussions, including those among doctors who assert that vabbing can be risky if done improperly. When vabbing, poor hygiene might cause major problems, such as infertility.
If you use soiled fingers within your vagina to collect discharge, you run the risk of traumatizing the tissue there as well as spreading infection and possibly even developing a pelvic inflammatory disease. Thrush or bacterial vaginosis could also be brought on by dirty fingers. Your discharge may smell bad if you have bacterial vaginosis or thrush, which will not help you find love.
Despite the fact that many people vape, it’s crucial to remember that it’s only a harmless trend that some people use to increase their self-esteem. Doctors claim that all of us have pheromone receptors that aid in attracting sexual partners, but vabbing is absolutely unnecessary from a medical standpoint. The glands in our bodies all produce the same pheromones.
Pheromones are present in our perspiration. We do not apply pheromones to our bodies; instead, we secrete them through our urine. In order to attract a spouse, there is absolutely no need to use your vaginal discharge on other parts of your body.
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Where did this start?
In a Secret Keepers Club podcast episode from November 2018 that was presented by comedians Carly Aquilino and Emma Willmann, vabbing initially gained notoriety. A listener who was intrigued by the story from a previous episode about a buddy who “double-tapped the puss” to create her own farm-to-table perfume. The friend utilized his (you won’t believe) ball sweat as cologne. The listener introduced her friends to the procedure, which they called “vabbing,” after the experiment yielded overwhelmingly positive results.
In August 2019, when Refinery29 published a divisive extract from Shan Boodram’s book, The Game of Desire, the “intimacy expert” and host of the podcast Lovers and Friends with Shan Boodram solidified her position as the face of vabbing.
She discussed the details of vabbing on YouTube two days later. Boodram, who has been vabbing for more than 15 years, was taken aback by the attention her habit garnered from the “little media circus.” Many prospective vabbers were intrigued by the film, which has had over 200,000 views to date. Viewers left comments like, “I’m definitely going to do this from now on,” and “I might give this a go! Given that it has to do with your natural aroma and pheromones, it makes obvious that it would function. And it is surely less expensive than perfume!
Mandy Lee (@oldloserinbrooklyn), a TikTok influencer, analyst, and writer, diverged from her regular fashion-related material on June 13, 2022, to espouse the joys of vabbing.
Doctors’ Opinions About Vabbing
Pheromones are informally defined as compounds secreted by one individual and detected by another of the same species that cause a certain reaction, according to Dr Simone Zoepke, a GP at Femina Health in Durban. Many non-human mammals and reptiles engage in mating and breastfeeding behaviours in response to pheromones in the animal kingdom.
There is an organ in the nose of several of these species called the “vomeronasal organ” (VNO). She continues, “These animals can smell pheromones because the VNO connects to particular sections of the brain.” In contrast, humans have a dormant, inactive VNO; as a result, the function of pheromones is largely contested.
There is a dearth of scientific data to back this technique among humans, according to many medical specialists, who also note the potential health hazards involved.
“Instead, much earlier research examined the impact of these compounds, such as the androstene steroids secreted in the axillary, or armpit, perspiration of men and estratetraenol, the weaker equivalent for women, and found inconclusive results,” she continues.
According to Zoepke, “There is no solid evidence to imply that there is a pheromone in vaginal secretions that might stimulate or attract men. Vabbing is the act of placing vaginal secretions on parts of the body over major arteries to promote pheromonal attractiveness. The practice’s risk-benefit ratio is therefore obvious, she continues.
Board-certified ob-gyn Dr Cynthia Wesley concurs that there is a paucity of research demonstrating the efficacy of vabbing, but she adds that there is some research demonstrating the impact pheromones have on individuals generally, citing a preliminary study on the steroid component androstadienone. Androstadienone, which is present in men’s axillary (underarm) perspiration, enhances mood and concentration in women, according to her.
While it’s unlikely that vabbing would lead to a gym romance, Dr Wesley speculates that “maybe the increased mood and focus of the women, caused by the androstadienone in the sweat of the males, has improved the women’s confidence, therefore making the men more attracted to the women.” She adds that despite this, experts haven’t particularly looked into the effectiveness of vabbing.
She commented, “Apologies with tears, but it does work. Lee’s TikTok introduced the divisive perfume to new audiences, and it has now received over 1 million views and counting. Veteran vabbers raced to the comments, swearing by it for dates, clubbing, and even job interviews. Users varied from horrified to enthralled.
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Is Vabbing Safe?
As the practice effectively involves spreading bacteria from the vagina to other parts of the body, Dr Fru warns against vabbing. Yes, the majority of the components of healthy vaginal fluid are cells and bacteria. Furthermore, Dr Wesley advises avoiding the trend if you have abnormal vaginal discharge or suspect you may have a sexually transmitted disease. If so, you ought to seek medical attention right away.
But if you practice good cleanliness and are positive you don’t have an illness, Dr Wesley says that vabbing may be “usually safe.” Before sticking a finger into your vagina, it’s crucial to properly wash your hands and fingernails for at least 20 seconds. Wash your hands one more after dabbing the area of your choice, she advises. This will stop you from transferring any dangerous bacteria to other surfaces and your own vagina.
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