Giving birth to my daughter is my greatest accomplishment, but nothing fully prepared me for the state my vagina would be in after pushing out a human baby with watermelon-sized proportions. Narrowly making it to the bathroom to pee had become the new norm, and about three months after she was born--once the post-birth blood circulation had ceased--I stopped having orgasms.
Adjusting to new mom life was difficult enough, but accepting that I’d be unable to orgasm for the rest of my days was not something I took lightly. That sent me down a rabbit hole of research, frustration, and, finally, a breakthrough.
Kegel exercises can help you see results, but I wanted them faster. So in addition to squats and pelvic floor thrusts, I also started using kegel trainers. Little weighted devices, much like tampons, that you insert into your vagina.
After about a month of regular use, my vagina had a light-bulb moment, an epiphany, an awakening--an orgasm! I could actually feel during sex again. Everything seemed tighter, I could clench and contract my muscles so much better during intercourse, and the incontinence slowly faded away.
This isn’t an isolated incident, however, because the need for kegel exercises at some point in a woman’s life is actually really common. According to Dr. Amanda Olson, certified pelvic floor rehabilitation specialist and expert behind Intimate Rose products, “one in three women experience pelvic floor problems, including up to 80 percent of pregnant women and new moms.” Beyond that, Dr. Olson says weak pelvic floor muscles, participating in high-impact sports, suffering chronic constipation, and the natural aging process are also to blame.
Fortunately, this is something that’s totally in your control, barring medical and/or physical conditions that prohibit kegel exercises.
It’s been two years now since giving birth, and during that time I’ve tried five different kegel trainers in a quest to find the absolute best exerciser for my pelvic floor. Here are my results.
1. LUNA Beads
LUNA Beads were my first ever kegel trainer and the set that helped me reach orgasm again. With a body-safe silicone harness, these four weighted beads (two 28g pink beads and two 37g blue beads) can be worn alone or in different combinations. They come complete with a thin retrieval loop for easy removal, which quelled my newbie kegel training anxiety, though they’re slightly more complicated to clean. Unique to this set is the ball within the ball, which creates a bouncy sensation if you’re active while wearing these. Try them while doing yoga for best effect.
Buy it: LUNA Beads by Lelo $59
2. Glass Kegel Eggs
Made from non-porous, food-grade material, these resemble the (in)famous jade eggs, minus the bacteria colony, and can be worn individually or together. Small, lightweight, and discreet, this set is great for beginners and comes with a storage pouch. I enjoyed using them, but just felt there wasn’t much growth to be had with these, although they are great for mastering the kegel squeeze. I’d feel up to wearing one of these outside the house, but not without a pair of underwear as a safety net.
Buy it: Glass Kegel Eggs from Eden Fantasys $13.49
3. Vibratissimo Uno
The most fun kegel exerciser of them all, this vibrating toy from Eden Fantasys helps tone your pelvic floor while also allowing for solo or partnered play. The Vibratissimo Uno comes with a downloadable app that lets you and/or your partner control the device from anywhere in the world. The app was difficult to set up and use initially, but once working, the vibration was really strong and presented with several speeds and variations. Not ideal for wearing out to quiet places, the Vibratissimo Uno is noisy. Nice for breaking up the monotony of daily kegel training.
Buy it: Vibratissimo Uno from Eden Fantasys $77.50
4. Intimate Rose Kegel Exercise Set
Level: Beginner to Advanced
Ergonomic and intuitive, the body-safe silicone set from Intimate Rose is the most comprehensive and well-rounded of all the kegel trainers. There are six weighted exercisers with retrieval cords that start at 25g and end at 125g. What I liked most about these, aside from the long-term growth potential, is the inclusion of doctor-procured instructions and recommendations on how and how often to use. Other extras include exercise programs, a convenient travel bag, and extensive email support. This set is definitely a keeper!
Buy it: Kegel Exercise Set by Intimate Rose $49.99
5. Nen-Wa Balls
Level: Intermediate to Advanced
A single non-porous hematite ball in this set weighs 63g, making them much more suitable for someone with kegel practice. The magnetism is extremely strong and will undoubtedly keep them together in your vagina. Aside from being heavy, these are really just your basic weighted balls and don’t have a lot of bells and whistles--so few that it doesn’t even come with a pouch or storage container. As much as I wanted to like these, I just can’t see myself using them again.
Buy it: Magnetic Hematite Balls from Eden Fantasys $15.19
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