| Tara Langdale

What are Vaginal Dilators: Purpose, Conditions Dilators Treat, Types and Complete Instructions

What are vaginal dilators?

A vaginal dilator, also known as an insert, is a plastic or silicone rod or cylinder with a rounded end that is inserted into the vagina. It can be used for various purposes such as stretching the tissues, training pelvic floor muscles, and reducing pain and anxiety associated with penetration. They can be purchased individually or you can purchase them in sets.

Conditions That Can Benefit from Vaginal Dilators

Vaginal dilators can be used to treat a variety of conditions that cause pain with intercourse or penetration. Here is a list of some health conditions that vaginal dilator can help.

There are several health conditions that can cause painful intercourse, including:

  • Menopause: Hormonal changes during menopause can make sex uncomfortable or painful. This may be called Vaginal Atrophy or Atrophic Vaginitis. 
  • Vaginismus: This condition causes involuntary muscle spasms in the vaginal area during penetration. You may feel like your partner is hitting a wall. Dilators are a very beneficial treatment for Vaginismus. 
  • Dyspareunia: Persistent pain in the genital area during or after intercourse is known as dyspareunia.
  • Previous radiation therapy or surgery for cancer: Certain types of cancer treatment can damage the vaginal tissue, making penetration difficult and painful.
  • Mayer-Rokitansky-Küster-Hauser (MRKH) syndrome: This congenital condition affects the development of the vagina, making intercourse challenging. Dilators can help in stretching and creating a functional opening.
  • Congenital conditions affecting the vagina or hymen: Some individuals may be born with conditions that result in a small vaginal opening, making intercourse difficult. Treatment may involve the use of vaginal dilators to help stretch the tissue.
  • Vaginal stenosis: This condition causes the vaginal opening to narrow or close due to scarring or hormonal changes.
  • Gender affirmation therapy: Dilators can also be used in gender affirmation therapy to support medical or surgical procedures that reconstruct the vagina.
  • Vulvodynia: a vulvar pain of at least three months' duration without a clear identifiable cause. It is a diagnosis of exclusion and is considered an idiopathic pain disorder. Vulvodynia can cause pain that is severe, debilitating, and devastating to the patients suffering from it. 
  • Vaginal stenosis: a condition in which the vagina becomes narrower and shorter due to the formation of fibrous tissue. Vaginal stenosis can contribute to sexual dysfunction, dyspareunia and make pelvic exams difficult and painful. The lining of the vagina may also be thinner and drier.
  • Painful Pelvic Exams: Speculums are designed for insertion into the birth canal, which may be uncomfortable but does not usually cause pain. If they do, dilators can help relax muscles before the exam if you are tense. 

Choosing the Right Type of Vaginal Dilator

There are different types of vaginal dilators available, including medical-grade plastic and silicone ones. The firmness and material can affect how they feel during use. It is your choice to decide which type of dilators will work best for you. 

How to Use Vaginal Dilators

Using vaginal dilators may seem intimidating at first, but with proper guidance and practice, it can become a simple and painless process. It is important to follow the steps carefully and start with the smallest size dilator in the kit. Using a water-based lubricant is also recommended for easier insertion.

Directions Before Using your VuVa™ Vaginal Dilators

  1. Wash dilators with a mild, fragrance-free soap and warm water. Let the dilators air dry. Vanicream Bar soap is a good option to clean dilators with.

 To Get Started

  1. In a private and comfortable place, lay on your back and put both knees up with your feet on the bed (no wider than your hips) or lay on your side and pull your legs up with a pillow between your knees.
  2. Lubricate the smallest VuVa™ Vaginal Dilator and vagina canal opening generously with a lubricant your choice. IMPORTANT: Do not use petroleum jelly (e.g., Vaseline). Slippery Stuff is water based and does not cause irritation. Keep all the dilators within reach.
  3. Finding the right size VuVa™ Vaginal Dilator can be tricky. If you find that you can only tolerate the tip going inside when using the smallest dilator, that’s ok and is not uncommon. However, if that is the case, it may be best that you start with the exercises (See the instructions below). Please do not force the dilator inside.
  4. Using gentle pressure, insert the smaller round end of the smallest dilator into your vagina. Make sure that the dilator shaft is inserted as deeply as is comfortable for you. Do not insert entire dilator -- leave the larger, round, flat end outside of vaginal opening.
  5. If there’s no discomfort (you can put the little one inside, squeeze and let go around it on the inside like you’re holding back gas and pee and take it out without any pain or irritation – not even a little bit), you need to use the next size bigger.
  6. You’re looking for minimal pain when you put the dilator in the vagina (pain level not more than a 1-2/10, with 0/10 being no pain and 10/10 the worst pain ever) —the type that you might just describe as “annoying” or “uncomfortable.” Moderate pain (pain levels 4-6/10) is too much, and severe pain (pain levels 7-10) should be avoided.
  7. Once you’ve found the proper size, please use your dilator 5-20 minutes twice/day. When you can actively insert and remove the dilator as well as contract and relax around it with no discomfort, move up to the next size.

IMPORTANT - WOMEN: Do not walk around with dilator inserted. Do not use dilators during sexual intercourse. Do not sleep with dilator inserted.

  1. Wash the vaginal dilators after use with mild, fragrance-free soap and warm water. Let them air dry.

Use a VuVa™ Vaginal Dilator comparable to your partners size 20 minutes before intercourse to relax tight muscles and bring blood flow to the area. You have now created a relaxed environment for penetration. 

The Importance of Consistency

Consistency is key when using vaginal dilators. It is recommended to use them at least one to three times per week for 5-20 minutes each time. It may take some time, but with regular use, vaginal dilators can help keep the tissues pliable and reduce pain and discomfort associated with penetration.

Where do I buy Vaginal Dilators? What Size Do I need?

VuVa Dilator Company has one of the smallest and longest medical grade plastic dilators on the market. They have a range of 7 sizes and a video you can watch for you to help determine what size you need. 

Here are the seven sizes:

  • Size 1 Length 4 inches Diameter .375 inches Circumference 1.17 inches
  • Size 2 Length 4.5 inches Diameter .5 inches Circumference 1.57 inches
  • Size 3 Length 5 inches Diameter .75 inch Circumference 2.35 inches
  • Size 4 Length 5.25 inches Diameter 1 inch Circumference 3.14 inches
  • Size 5 Length 5.75 inches Diameter 1.125 inch Circumference 3.53 inches
  • Size 6 Length 6 inches Diameter 1.375 inches Circumference 4.32 inches
  • Size 7 Length 6.5 inches Diameter 1.625 inches Circumference 5.09 inches

What is the best types of Vaginal Dilator?

Medical Grade Plastic dilators are known to be more comfortable than silicone dilators. They are smoother, softer, and less irritating to the vaginal tissues when pulling them in and out. It’s often better to use firm dilators made of hard plastic because firm plastic dilators move and stretch the muscles around your vagina (your pelvic floor muscles) better than silicone dilators.

Plastic dilators are much easier to clean and maintain than silicone dilators. They can be easily cleaned and do not attract dust and other particles that stick to silicone.

Plastic dilators are generally more affordable than silicone dilators. As a result, they are a better option for women who are on a tighter budget.

VuVa Magnetic Vaginal Dilators include Neodymium Magnets inside the dilators to increase blood flow and reduce pain. 

Clinical Trial Results for Magnetic Dilators

VuVa Vaginal Dilators vs. Placebo Dilators: A Double Blind Placebo Study 

  1. Eighty percent (80%) of study subjects reported a decrease in overall pain after using the VuVa™ magnetic vaginal dilators.
  2. Subjects using the VuVa™ magnetic vaginal dilators experienced an average thirty percent (30%) decrease in pain levels on a standardized tampon test, which is a way to clinically measure pain associated with sexual intercourse.
  3. The cotton swab test evaluates eleven (11) different locations of the vulvar vestibule for pain. Eighty percent (80%) of the study subjects reported a decrease in the total number of locations after using the VuVa™ magnetic vaginal dilators.
  4. Subjects using the VuVa™ magnetic vaginal dilators experienced an average twenty eight percent (28%) decrease in pain levels using a standardized cotton swab test, which is a non-invasive measure of vaginal pain.

Overall anxiety associated with vaginal penetration is significantly decreased in all subjects.

Subjects report feeling more confident about their sexual health in the future after completing the study.

Subjects report that VuVa dilator therapy is not a painful treatment.

For Full Study CLICK HERE


Vaginal dilators are a safe and effective form of therapy for people experiencing pain or anxiety with intercourse or penetration. It is important to consult with a healthcare professional, who can provide guidance on the right type and usage of vaginal dilators for your specific condition. With consistency and patience, dilator therapy can greatly improve the quality of life for individuals experiencing these issues. So, consider talking to your doctor about using vaginal dilators as part of your treatment plan. Remember, it's important to prioritize your sexual health and well-being. So don't hesitate to explore all the options available to you for a better and more comfortable experience. Let vaginal dilators be a helpful tool in your journey towards a pain-free and enjoyable sex life! Check out our recommended products below for some of the best vaginal dilators on the market. Remember, always consult with your doctor before using any new medical devices.

By continuing to learn and educate ourselves on topics related to sexual health and well-being, we can break stigmas and empower ourselves and others towards a happier and healthier life. Remember that every individual's experience is unique and valid, and it's important to seek professional help when needed. 


  • https://www.healthline.com/health/vaginal-dilators
  • https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/vaginal-dilators/about/pac-20385014
  • https://www.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/17133-vaginal-dilator-therapy-for-sexual-health
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK430792/

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult with your healthcare provider before using any new medical devices or treatments.

VuVa Dilators on Netflix!

Well what a surprise!!! A few years back we received an email from the props department on the Sex Education show on Netflix. They asked if we could send them a vaginal dilator set for their show. We couldn't say yes fast enough! 

Checkout Sex Education on Netflix: Season 2 Episode 8