Vaginal Pain During Sex: 5 Products to Help

Vaginal Pain During Sex: 5 Products to Help

Make sex more comfortable with products that ease tension and dryness

Love hurts. Sex shouldn't.

Yet three in four women will experience pain during sex in their lifetimes, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Relief from painful sex shouldn't be about masking the symptoms with more lube (and definitely not the often-suggested glass of wine).

You can treat the causes with products for painful intercourse and pelvic pain that relieve muscle tension, enhance comfort and restore lubrication.

Read on to learn more about vaginal pain during sex and products like vaginal dilators, pelvic wands, red-light devices, vaginal moisturizers and more.

Vaginal Pain During Sex

Why is sex painful?

Dyspareunia—the all-encompassing medical term for pain during, before or after sex—can consist of any of these symptoms:

  • Vaginal pain with any type of penetration, including sex, tampon use and medical exams
  • Pain only at the entry of the vagina during initial penetration
  • Deep pain during thrusts, felt in the cervix or lower abdomen
  • Burning or stinging pain felt in the vulva
  • Tightness, cramping or spasms of the pelvic floor muscles
  • Throbbing pain after intercourse

Dyspareunia has more than a dozen causes, ranging from muscular and tissue problems like pelvic floor tension and vaginal atrophy, gynecological conditions like endometriosis or ovarian cysts, and situational issues like infections or injuries from childbirth.

Both physical and mental health therapists can help. But here are some of the top causes of painful sex that can also be treated with at-home pelvic floor products. 


With vaginismus, the muscles around the vaginal opening automatically tighten or spasm upon penetration to make sex painful or even impossible.

It's the body's reflexive way of protecting itself after experiencing pelvic pain, sexual trauma, childbirth injuries or even something unknown. And as with any bodily reflex, you can't make it stop.

Products like vaginal dilators and pelvic wands gradually desensitize the vagina to penetration, relieving tension and giving muscles a much-needed dose of relaxation.


If you feel more pain outside of your genital area than inside, it might be vulvodynia.

The condition, affecting the vulva and vaginal opening, can feel like burning, stinging or rawness—either constantly or when the area is touched.

Pelvic floor muscle spasms are among the causes of vulvodynia, along with hormonal changes, nerve damage and more. Vaginal dilators can help the muscles stretch and relax, promoting blood flow that eases the pain.

Menopause and perimenopause

There's a simple equation that explains why as many as 45 percent of women experience pain with sex after menopause.

As your body ages, it produces fewer hormones. With less estrogen, your vaginal tissues become more dry. More dryness causes more friction, making intercourse painful. And more sex without proper lubrication can cause tissue damage or issues like vaginismus, worsening the pain.

Using lubricants before sex may be only part of the solution. Vaginal moisturizers provide longer-term hydration, while red-light devices help revive tissue and pelvic floor exercise promotes strength and natural lubrication.

The postpartum period and breastfeeding

Hormonal changes are also often to blame for painful sex during another life change: the postpartum period.

Estrogen skyrockets during pregnancy (cue the random acts of crying) before plummeting after childbirth to make way for oxytocin and prolactin, the hormones responsible for breast milk.

While all women have low estrogen after childbirth, breastfeeding can extend the dry spell for at least six months or even throughout the entire nursing experience. 

Childbirth injuries

If you tore a muscle in your leg, you'd likely experience pain with activity for months. And even after the injury healed, the muscle still might feel tight or stiff.

The same is true when you have an episiotomy or perineal tear during childbirth.

While pelvic floor weakness is common following tears, so is tension due to shortened muscles and scar tissue. Products like pelvic wands and red-light devices can give tissue more elasticity, making sex more comfortable.

Vaginal stenosis

Painful sex is among the many side effects of cancer patients undergoing radiation treatment near the pelvic organs.

Tissues become thin and dry with vaginal stenosis, which can also be caused by hormonal changes or surgery. With less elasticity, the vaginal canal becomes shorter and narrower, causing pain with penetration.

Vaginal dilators can help stretch the muscles, while a pelvic wand with vibration can promote blood flow that softens the tissue.

Products for painful intercourse

Ohnut sex buffer

Ohnut price


What is Ohnut?

Ohnut is a set of four stretchy rings that act as a buffer during sex, preventing penetration from going painfully deep. The rings can be applied to the penis one by one, allowing you to customize penetration depth.

Users say Ohnut doesn't affect sensation, but it lessens both physical and emotional pain during sex—with both partners freed of fears that can kill the vibe. 

How to use Ohnut

Ohnut rings are easy to apply, with each stretching up to 15 inches. The company recommends starting with three rings before adjusting to your needs.

Products for painful intercourse

Vaginal dilators

Vaginal dilator prices

$80 to $400 depending on type and quantity

What are vaginal dilators?

If you feel closed off to sex—literally—vaginal dilators can open the path to more comfortable intercourse.

These cylindrical tools train your muscles and tissues to relax, helping you practice for penetration.

Inserted like a tampon, dilators apply a gentle stretch to tight muscles and tissues caused by conditions ranging from vaginismus to menopause. Dilators can also help strengthen the pelvic floor by improving its elasticity.

How to use vaginal dilators

Using a vaginal dilator involves slowly inserting the product into your vagina (with plenty of lube to help) while breathing deeply and using pressure that's gentle, not forceful.

Dilators range in diameter from less than a half-inch to nearly 5 inches (bigger than the average penis), allowing you to work toward tolerating increasing degrees of penetration.

Manufacturers like Intimate Rose and VuVa make sets of four progressive sizes, while Milli's dilator expands one millimeter at a time to offer 25 sizes in one product.

Products for painful intercourse

Pelvic wands

Pelvic wand prices

$35 to $60

What are pelvic wands?

Think of a pelvic wand as an internal foam roller, relieving tight pelvic floor muscles that are causing painful sex.

Gentle pressure from the wand helps to release trigger points, whether the tension is caused by a condition like vaginismus or muscles that have become overworked or damaged after childbirth.

In addition to its original wand, Intimate Rose also produces wands with heat and vibration that can offer additional therapeutic relief.

How to use pelvic wands

After gently inserting a pelvic wand into the vagina, explore what's inside by slowly sweeping it until you find a tender spot.

Maintain the same kind of pressure you'd use to check a tomato for ripeness, holding the wand and breathing for one to two minutes until you feel the discomfort subsiding.

Products for painful intercourse

Joylux vFit Gold

Joylux vFit Gold price


What is Joylux vFit Gold?

Just like red-light LED treatments are used in dermatology, light energy can promote cellular repair that revives vaginal tissues, too.

Joylux vFit Gold is an intravaginal wand that uses light energy, gentle heat and vibration to soothe dryness and increase natural lubrication.

Vaginal tissue with more moisture and elasticity makes for better, more comfortable sex: 89 percent of women reported increased sensation and confidence during intercourse after using vFit Gold, according to the company.

How to use Joylux vFit Gold

Joylux recommends using the vFit Gold three times weekly for six to eight weeks until symptoms improve, then using it once or twice a week for maintenance.

After inserting the device into the vagina, choose a session length ranging from six to 10 minutes and, if desired, pick one of six vibration patterns.

Products for painful intercourse

Vaginal moisturizers

Vaginal moisturizer prices

$25 to $50

What are vaginal moisturizers?

If you're suffering from vaginal dryness, moisturizing down there should be as much of your daily routine as applying lotion after a shower.

Vaginal moisturizers differ from sexual lubricants in that they create hydration long-term, not just in the moment.

Products like the AH!YES Vaginal Moisturizing Gel, the Joylux revitalizHER Hydrating Serum, the Enchanted Rose Feminine Balm by Intimate Rose use ingredients that are naturally moisturizing, like coconut oil and aloe vera.

Look for hydrating, water-based lubes for intercourse, too: Pjur Infinity uses medical-quality ingredients with no additives, while Coconu harnesses the hydrating powers of coconut water.

Products for painful intercourse


Uncomfortable sex is painful both physically and emotionally. But you don't have to accept it as your new reality after life changes like childbirth and menopause.

Products that relieve muscle tension, promote tissue healing and increase lubrication can help restore your sex life and your health.

Vagercise is an independent, woman-owned retailer of pelvic floor products that accepts HSA/FSA payments and offer free shipping on orders over $99.

Want to learn more about products for avoiding painful sex? Contact us at

Shop Products in this Post

  • Enchanted Rose Natural Vaginal Moisturizer by Intimate Rose

    Relieve down-there dryness and irritation with an organic balm
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  • Intimate Rose Medium Vaginal Dilator Set for Pelvic Pain

    Ease pelvic pain and tightness with these mid-sized silicone dilators
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  • Intimate Rose Large Vaginal Dilator Set for Pelvic Pain

    Prep for less painful penetration with the largest set of dilators
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  • Intimate Rose Pelvic Wand for Pelvic Pain

    Relieve pelvic pain and tightness with this therapist-designed wand
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  • Intimate Rose Small Vaginal Dilator Set for Pelvic Pain

    Start your recovery from pelvic pain with small silicone dilators
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  • Intimate Rose Vibrating Pelvic Wand for Pelvic Pain

    Soothing vibration helps relax muscles and ease pelvic pain
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  • Joylux vFit Gold Red-Light LED Device for Vaginal Rejuvenation

    Improve lubrication and pelvic floor strength with red-light energy
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  • Joylux revitalizHER Hydrating Serum

    Soothe dryness and irritation with this serum for intimate areas
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  • Milli Expandable Vaginal Dilator

    Treat penetration pain with the only adjustable dilator for vaginismus
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    Buy on Milli
  • Ohnut Depth-Limiting Rings

    Avoid deep pain from sex with rings that limit penetration depth
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