Self Care: Vaginal Dryness/SYLK

This is a sponsored post.  I have been compensated through the Chronic Illness Bloggers network.  All opinions remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company. 
In case the inflammation on our joints isn’t enough, chronic diseases like rheumatoid arthritis like to dish out some additional symptoms  One of those is dryness. Often the medications we are taking for our RA or the additional diagnosis of sjogren’s syndrome will cause us to experience extreme dryness.  The dryness may be in your eyes, which is a fairly common complaint, but it may also cause vaginal dryness, a less discussed topic. Add perimenopause to the picture and it isn’t pretty.  Ah, autoimmune diseases just keep giving.  

As part of the Chronic Illness Bloggers Network, I was asked if I was interested in trying out the product SYLK, for vaginal dryness. Yes, please! This New Zealand product has been around for 30 years and has recently received FDA clearance in the USA.

I wanted to try this product for several reasons. 
  1. I like the ingredients of this product.  My skin has always been very sensitive so I avoid harsh chemicals not only because I know my skin can’t handle them, but also because with a chronic illness, I believe we should be as conscious as possible about what we put in and on our bodies. Remember, your skin is an organ too. As always, I avoid products that contain parabens, petroleums, or other chemicals. Years ago I started working towards the idea that if I wouldn’t ingest the product, I shouldn’t use it on my body. (I am not 100% yet, but it is getting closer all the time.) SYLK is a product that is made primarily from the kiwi vine. I like that. It is water based. (I am happy to ingest both kiwi and water!) The ingredients of SYLK are deionized water, extract of kiwifruit plant vegetable glycerine, sodium citrate, xanthan gum, citric acid, potassium sorbate, and citrus seed extract. Because of the ingredients, SYLK is also safe to use during breastfeeding.. 
  2. I like the philosophy of SYLK.  SYLK states on their website that they use an “ecologically Bio-sustainable process” in the making of their product.  Basically they take the vines of kiwis that are left to rot and extract the good stuff they need. Then they compost the vines.  Awesome!  
  3. I honestly am experiencing vaginal dryness.  TMI?  Too bad! It’s true. If not cared for, vaginal dryness can create additional complications such as vaginal itching, soreness, cuts, and painful sex. Personally, I don’t have the time or energy to deal with these issues.  Plus, like the rest of my body, I want to feel good down below.  A system that is working properly is always good.  
  4. Issues regarding our private areas are still not talked about often enough and I appreciate SYLK asking us to discuss the connection between chronic illness and vaginal dryness. Sometimes we feel like we are contributing every change in our bodies to our chronic illness and sometimes it really is connected. Vaginal dryness is a real issue for anyone experiencing a chronic illness, even when other symptoms seem under control. For many, sex becomes uncomfortable after symptoms like stiff swollen joints appear. We have to deal with the pain and our insecurities of sex while in pain.  Don’t add vaginal dryness to your list of reasons you have to avoid sex. Plus, as we age, the dryness continues.  Learn to care for yourself as soon as symptoms appear.  We don’t hesitate to add ointments to our sore joints or dry eyes and we shouldn’t ignore vaginal dryness either. 
  5. It’s not just for women.  Men can use it too!

Now, how do I like the product? I like it.  It doesn’t have a scent which is always a plus for me. When applied, it feels natural enough that you can use it during sex or on days that you feel you need a little more lubrication. I even received individual packets which I think would be awesome to throw in your purse for a dry day.  Don’t blush, I keep eye-drops in my purse too. One little warning:  it is runny.  I wasn’t expecting that and spilled it all over myself.  But it absorbs quickly and there isn’t any stickiness afterwards that some lubricants leave behind.  My suggestion is give it a try.     

*I did check Skin So Deep, a site sponsored by EWG, who rates personal products by safety, but it hasn’t shown up there yet. I like to check out products I use regularly and see how they might affect my body and health.  

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