If you’re reading this and you’ve hit the end of the road with using western medicine and prescriptions to mask any underlying issues related to your sacred womb space, then introducing a practice of vaginal steaming might be a fruitful new path to take. On the Why Steam section on my website I cover the various symptoms (from fibroids through to recurring thrush) that have been known to respond positively to a vaginal steaming practice.
If you then decide to open up the door to this wonderful ancient practice it’s important to set yourself up for success with the right tools to begin your steaming. In this post today I go through the things that you need to set up your first steam. If reading is not your thing and you would prefer to watch, then this video on my How To Steam page has everything you need to know to set up a steaming practice at home.
First things first, you are going to need a sauna…
A sauna can be anything from a hole cut out of a wooden chair to a custom designed sauna. One thing I will stress is the importance of the sauna being made of wood. I know that there are plastic bowls that sit inside the toilet bowl which may look very practical, however I would strongly caution against using them. Putting hot water into plastic is going to release toxins from the material and the last thing you want is that going up into your sacred space. If placing a bowl inside the toilet seat is the method you want to use then please use an alternative material like glass or a stainless steel bowl.
In my shop I have a Caribbean Pine sauna available for purchase in Turks & Caicos and if you live elsewhere you can view the extensive gallery on the Steamy Chick website where saunas can be shipped worldwide. If you’re based in Zambia I can also point you in the right direction of getting a sauna made by a carpenter that I have collaborated with before.
If you have access to power tools, you can very easily build a sauna of your own. When I first started steaming here in Turks & Caicos nobody was selling saunas so I asked my husband to build me one going by pictures of saunas I had researched online. I would recommend sealing the outside of the sauna with a natural wood sealant (beeswax, olive oil and walnut oil) to protect your sauna from bacteria and mold. Personally I love the sauna box because it offers so much versatility on how to sit and it’s so much more comfortable when sitting for the longer advanced steam set up of 30 minutes.
Designated Herb Pot
From a hygienic perspective and creating a nice sacred ritual for yourself it’s a good idea to have your own dedicated pot for steaming. Not the same pot that you’re cooking your food in 🙂
Once again it’s important to consider the material of the pot to ensure that nothing unwanted is being released into your steam. For this reason, teflon (non stick) and cast iron are not recommended for steaming. Instead you could use glass, crock pot, stainless steel, earthenware or clay. My personal preference is this lovely stainless steel milk pot that you can buy on Amazon. It retains it’s heat nicely and I love that the glass lid lets you see what’s happening to the water and the herbs.
Vaginal Steaming is the ancient practice of adding herbs to hot water and sitting over the pot of water to allow the herbal steam to rise up into the vaginal canal. I use four different vaginal steam herb blends that are all designed to help a woman achieve a standard healthy cycle without any side effects. Each formula has herbal properties for clearing the uterus from stagnation, improving vaginal flora, increasing circulation and regularizing the cycle. Each blend also has specific herbs based on the type of menstrual cycle imbalance or side effects a cycle might be experiencing.
In my online shop I sell four different herbal blends – cleansing, gentle, cooling and disinfecting. These herbs are available for delivery in Turks & Caicos only. If you live elsewhere I recommend purchasing herbs from Steamy Chick. Under each herbal blend in my shop there is an explanation of who the herbs are for. If you are unsure of which one to choose I would be happy to point you in the right direction with a Vaginal Steam Health Consultation.
In order to prepare your herbs for a steam you will need a heat source to boil your water. This can either be your kitchen stove or a kettle, however if you are going to be steaming for longer than 10 minutes you will need a single burner electric stove. Your symptoms will determine whether or not you can steam for longer than 10 minutes. Please refer to the How to Steam page to determine whether to set up for a mild setup (10 minutes without heat source underneath) or advanced steam setup (30 minutes with heat source underneath).
In my Caribbean Pine Sauna, I have a hole at the bottom back panel to run the power cable of an electric hot plate to sit on the floor of the sauna. This allows me to boil the water and prepare the herbs inside the sauna, as well as maintaining a low heat level to keep the herbs steaming for a 30 minute advanced steam set up.
Having a tea ball or muslin bag to contain your herbs is not an essential thing to have, however it can come in useful if you want to use the herbs more than once for steaming consecutive days. My personal preference is this Basket Mesh Tea Infuser that I bought from a lovely online tea shop in the UK. I like the fact that the mesh is wide enough for the tea to infuse nicely and the ball is big enough for 3 tablespoons to fit in nicely.
Cloaking during your steam is not essential, but in some cases it can help the herbs do their thing more efficiently. In cases where there is an active infection, the woman is prone to excess heat (night sweats or hot flashes), cloaking should be avoided. I use a chitenge cloth which is made from cotton to cover my lap while I steam. It is possible to buy a steaming gown if you would like a dedicated cloth for cloaking. Etsy has a wide range of gowns to choose from.
Questions & sharing
I hope that this post has been helpful in setting you up for success. If you do crack out the power tools I would love to see what sauna you make so please do share.
If you have any questions please reach out to me in the comments section below or drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org My goal is to have a sauna available in every household for the women of all ages to use and benefit from this ancient practice.