DO NOT WANT.
My official title here at YourTango.com is senior staff writer.
Unofficially I think it's safe to say that my title is actually "employee most likely to stick things up her vagina so that our readers don't have to."
Vagina weight-training kegel eggs? Done. And ouch.
Menstrual sponge to sop up my period, albeit poorly? Done, and I've still got the nightmares to prove it.
A needle full of my own plasma right into my clit and vagina? Yes, and there's video of that too, so goodbye to any plans I ever had of running for office!
While each experience of putting something strange in my own vagina for your benefit has yielded different results, he one thing they had in common (other than my vagina) is that they left me with great stories to tell.
That, as a writer, is something I truly cherish.
Today is no exception to the rule.
When I first learned about herbal tampons I was delighted. That's partially because I am always delighted when I find a new women's health product to try, and also partially because any product that claims to be used by the ancient Imperial Chinese courts is going to make me feel kind of delighted.
I spent $4.00 and was promised in exchange a 5 piece pack of herbal tampons. I was expecting something similar to the photographs shared on the website where I first spotted them.
Those expectations were quickly thwarted when the mail arrived many weeks later and I opened an envelope to find this:
Now, I joke about my vagina being large, or wide-set, but in reality it is probably a fairly average vagina (I just like to bolster her ego from time to time).
That said, the idea of putting this alleged tampon, roughly the size of a baby's incisor, into my vagina with no visible means of pulling it back out of my vagina with ease made my womb shudder.
But I take my responsibilities for this site very seriously. So, after writing a last will and testament on the off chance that I did not survive this encounter, I got to work.
The first thing you need to know about herbal tampons is what they are meant to do. They are not supposed to act as a real tampons. Instead, the collections of herbs are supposed to detox your womb and correct "womb erosion."
This was good news, since I did not know my womb contained any toxins that needed flushing, nor was I aware that my womb was in danger of washing away like the beaches of Fire Island.
There is a veritable laundry list of ailments that Clean Point Qing Gong Wan Tampon promised to cure, from vaginal dryness to even a sluggish metabolism.
True to its word, the tiny ball was stuffed full of herbs that I probably should have researched before getting to work, but time, tide, and my vagina wait for no man.
As instructed online, I let the tiny orb steep in some (tepid) water. I noticed a cloud of dust color the water and panicked but tried to think positively. I thought that the herbs might expand in the water, but after a wait of twenty minutes (ten minutes longer than required) I realized that wasn't going to be the case.
Since there was no string attached to the tampon, I used dental floss because I am the MacGyver of putting things up my vagina. Pro tip: If you try this, do not use a mint-flavored floss because oh my god the burning.
The tampons recommended that you keep them inside your body for 72 hours, but at just twenty minutes my vagina was doing everything in its power to reject the soggy stank pellet I had inserted into my person.
I didn't tell you about the smell, did I?
You guys. It was so bad. I'm worried that I'm not a good enough writer to capture it fully, but because I'm a journalist and the stank is a key feature to this detoxifying pellet, I'll give it my best shot.
Imagine you decided to exhume the corpse of England's Queen Victoria from the grave. Once she was out, you decided to take her to Lush and have her try out every single lotion in the store. Now, imagine sticking her nose betwixt her corpse breaths and inhaling her scent deeply and with purpose.
That is probably better than what this sucker smelled like.
I knew that 72 hours weren't going to be feasible for me, so I settle for three hours. This was just enough time for me to both grow used to the fact that my vagina was going to smell like I was rotting internally forever and to get used to the way the little annoying bubble felt making its home in my vaginal canal.
About an hour in, I got lightheaded. I chalked this up to my anxiety and ignored it. At hour two, I started periodically seeing spots. At two and half hours, sure it was only a matter of time until my womb slid out along with the herbal tampon, I removed the beast.
I felt a strange tingling when I did so, and when I peed I tried not to blanch at the ochre color of my urine.
Did my womb feel detoxified? I mean, it felt fine, as far as wombs go. I wasn't aware of it at all and ideally that's how I feel most comfortable with my womb. The smell lingered longer than I would have liked (read: for any amount of time).
It's been a few days and I have noticed no changes in my genitals or, for that matter, my womb. I briefly got diarrhea, but if that's what they meant by detoxifying, I could just as easily have eaten a Hot Pocket and waited for all hell to be unleashed upon my bowels.
So final verdict, mostly this herbal tampon was a waste of time. If you've got a serious problem with your vagina go see a doctor, don't pay 4 dollars and stuff mysterious herbs up yourself in the hopes of avoiding an awkward appointment with your legs in the stirrups.