It's something that Lo Bosworth—former reality star, chef, and creator of lifestyle site The Lo Down—is very familiar with. Whenever she would get a vaginal infection, she found that most treatments on the market actually created more problems than they solved—plus, many are full of chemicals that you may not want anywhere near such an intimate area.
"I feel like this is a common thread among women I've spoken to," Bosworth says. "A doctor I met with once said that I have bad plumbing. Sorry, but that wasn't an acceptable answer."
Because it's 2016 and a woman shouldn't have to climb mountains to take care of her lady parts (or use a suppository—like Monistat—that contains propylene glycol, which is essentially a fossil fuel and is on the Dirty Dozen list of ingredients to avoid), Bosworth decided to do something about it herself.
After plenty of research, she found that boric acid, a mineral that can be used in suppository form, could clear up her infections overnight, she says. "Basically it's a throwback product that gynecologists used to prescribe before antifungal drugs were created," says Bosworth.
"A doctor I met with once said that I have bad plumbing. Sorry, but that wasn't an acceptable answer."
New York City-based gynecologist Eden Fromberg, MD, agrees that boric acid provides relief with fewer side effects, calling it "an excellent alternative to irritating anti-fungal and antibiotic treatment methods that further compromise the vaginal microbiome."
And Carla Savetsky, founder of Natural Healing for Women—a holistic practice in NYC whose fans include women's health expert Christiane Northrup, MD—adds, "Though it can be a caustic treatment, women with chronic yeast infections or BV consider boric acid a life-saver."
To get your hands on infection-fighting treatments using boric acid, however, you have to get a prescription and then get it filled at a "compounding pharmacy," or one that can create the mixture for you on site.
"It's really complicated and expensive," Bosworth says. So she decided to get plain boric acid (which is accessible) and teach herself how to compound it—and then, she whipped up a dose to treat her vag-related issues.
"In that moment, I thought, 'Wait, this is something that women should have access to,'" she says. After several months of extensive research and working with doctors, she has created Love Wellness, a brand of feminine wellness products.
The Love Wellness line includes suppositories (Bosworth's star product is "The Killer," with pure boric acid), do-everything wipes made with coconut oil, and probiotics (since, of course, your gut health is linked to your vaginal health)—meant to actually help with the tricky female issues that can be tough to properly treat.
"Why can't we elevate the experience of being a woman and take care of our bodies in a way that is enjoyable rather than embarrassing?" she asks. At a time when tampons are becoming more chic and period conversations are getting louder and prouder (especially if you're, say, running a marathon or competing at the Olympics)—Bosworth is definitely on the pulse of the feminine health movement.
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