Everything about intimate hygiene for men

Disclaimer :

If you have any medical questions or concerns, please talk to your healthcare provider. The articles on Medicade.co.uk are based on peer-reviewed research and information from medical societies and governmental agencies. However, they should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Why is proper intimate hygiene so important for men?

Men often need to be quick: get up, go to the bathroom, have coffee and off they go to work. It easily happens that proper intimate hygiene is neglected or even forgotten. It is more important than one might think: Dirt, germs, urine and skin flakes collect in the intimate area throughout the day. These cause unpleasant odors if intimate hygiene is inadequate and create an ideal breeding ground for infections.

If sexual intercourse occurs without being washed , the risk of a potential fungal infection in the partner increases significantly. While women usually notice a fungal infection promptly, men can be infected without noticing any symptoms . Unfortunately, the insidious thing about fungal infections is that they must be treated by both partners, otherwise there is a risk of constant mutual infection. If left untreated, fungal infections can spread to the urethra and cause other health problems.

Proper intimate hygiene therefore not only removes unpleasant odors, but also serves to protect and maintain your own health .

Use intimate hygiene as a precaution

During daily intimate hygiene, you can not only clean yourself, you can also be active for your health at the same time . Regular palpation of the testicles and penis can be a good precaution against testicular and penile cancer . Although testicular cancer is rare, it mostly affects men between the ages of 20 and 35. If the testicles feel enlarged when palpated or if hardening can be felt, a timely visit to the urologist is recommended. In general, testicular cancer is treatable, but the earlier it is detected, the better the chances of a full recovery. Further information on preventive care can be found in the article preventive medical check-ups for men.

Washing the intimate area properly: Man(n) should pay attention to this

Thorough and daily cleaning of the intimate area is very important in order not to give germs and infections a breeding ground . It is not enough to briefly rinse the penis with water, as the bacteria and dirt are under the foreskin .

If you come home after a long, tiring day, you will notice an unpleasant odor in your intimate area when you undress. If man(s) now takes a look at his penis and pulls back the foreskin, he will find a white to light yellow substance that causes this smell: smegma . Throughout the day, urine residues, dead skin particles, germs and – depending on the case – also sperm collect under the foreskin. The formation of smegma is quite normal, but it still needs to be removed daily . Accumulation under the foreskin can be easily removed with a pH-neutral intimate lotion and lukewarm water. It is also important that not only water is used. This alonedries out the skin and weakens its resistance to germs , which encourages infections.

signs of infection

Pathogens can accumulate under the foreskin and cause infection. Fungal infections in men can be symptom-free and remain undetected: nevertheless, the partner can be infected during sexual intercourse. If symptoms occur, they are usually characterized by unpleasant itching, purulent discharge, burning and foul-smelling odors . Also redness and swelling, as well as pain when urinating or having sexcan occur. The treatment of a fungal infection is uncomplicated and easy to integrate into everyday life. An ointment is usually applied to the penis once or twice a day for a period of time. Important: The partner must also be treated. Otherwise there is a risk of renewed mutual infection.

anal shower

Anal douches were originally used for healing purposes before being used to clean out the rectum in preparation for anal sex. Stool residues in the anal canal sometimes lead to anal itching, which can be eliminated with the help of an anal douche . Regular cleaning of the rectum can help prevent anal itching and burning. Anal fissures (small tears) can also be treated successfully in this way. However, daily use is strongly discouraged , since around 80% of our defense cells are located in the intestine and the intestinal flora must not be disturbed. If you want to work with the anal douche, you shouldn’t do it more than once a week.

Intimate hygiene before sexual intercourse

Thorough intimate cleansing is recommended for both partners before sexual intercourse takes place. Not only is it much more hygienic if your partner is freshly washed, it also prevents the exchange of pathogenic germs .

Washing the intimate area properly step by step

Proper washing is the be-all and end-all when it comes to intimate hygiene, because a lot can go wrong here too.

➀ To be observed in general

  • Use lukewarm water.
  • You can either use your hand or a washcloth. When using a washcloth, it should be changed daily and then washed at at least 60 degrees to kill bacteria. A hygiene cleaner for underwear and towels is also recommended.
  • Use a clean towel to dry off.

➁ Instructions for washing the penis and testicles

  • Gently push back the foreskin.
  • Now remove the smegma on the glans with a mild lotion.
  • Soap the testicles with the lotion as well
  • Rinse the testicles and penis thoroughly with lukewarm water so that no lotion remains.
  • Dry glans and testicles well: A moist, warm environment otherwise promotes a potential fungal infection.

➂ Washing instructions anal area

  • Apply a mild lotion to your hand or washcloth
  • Thoroughly clean the skin folds on the buttocks : Harmful bacteria can easily settle here, which can lead to painful infections.
  • Rinse off the lotion with lukewarm water
  • Dry the area well: A warm, humid climate also promotes potential infections here.

The penis with testicles and then the anal area should always be cleaned first so that, in case of doubt, no intestinal bacteria can get under the foreskin or into the urethra.

Problems with the foreskin during intimate hygiene

Intimate hygiene also serves men as health care. If you find out that you have problems pulling back your foreskin, you may have a narrowing of the foreskin . This should promptly be presented to a urologist* to avoid negative health consequences. A narrowing of the foreskin not only makes proper cleaning more difficult, but can also lead to tears, which can lead to painful inflammation.

Piercing and intimate hygiene

Piercings in the intimate area need to be well thought out and done professionally. The cleaning depends on the status of the piercing: freshly pierced or existing for a long time. If the piercing is freshly pierced, no lotion should be used during the healing phase . It should also be carefully cleaned twice a day according to the piercer’s instructions. In the case of piercings that have been there for a longer period of time, the piercings are regularly removed and cleaned with disinfectant . The puncture channel is cleaned by pushing the piercing back and forth. Otherwise, normal intimate hygiene is possible without any problems .

Man(s) should avoid this when it comes to intimate hygiene

Unfortunately, you can also do a lot wrong when it comes to intimate hygiene. In order to prevent infections, it is therefore advisable to observe the following points in the future:

  • Improper urination: If the foreskin is not retracted when urinating, germs can easily accumulate and lead to infection.
  • Soap in the urethra: Soap in the urethra can be very painful . It is therefore recommended to use a washing lotion / washing gel.
  • Dirty towels: Bacteria and germs abound in towels that have already been used . If these reach irritated or weakened skin areas, infections can result.
  • Unhygienic underwear : Underwear should be changed daily . Dead skin particles, sweat and urine residues also collect in the fabric. A cleaned penis should be packed in a fresh pair of boxer shorts. It should also have a breathable fabric and not be skin-tight.
  • Do not dry properly : Bacteria and germs thrive in a warm and humid climate . If the glans is not dried properly and the foreskin is pushed back, bacteria can easily spread and lead to an infection.
  • Avoid visiting a doctor: If there are changes in the state of health of the penis or testicles, it is important to see a doctor as soon as possible. Yeast infections, STDs, and lumps need treatment and won’t go away on their own .
  • Anal sex mistakes : After anal sex, the penis must be cleaned before it can be inserted into the vagina. Even when the lovemaking is over, it is imperative to carry out a thorough cleaning so that intestinal bacteria do not nest under the foreskin . If the act is not to be interrupted, the condom should be changed and at least a brief cleaning with an intimate tissue is recommended.

The right hygiene items

With the right intimate care for men, countless care products are not required. Rather, it depends on the few right ones. Intimate care products should

  • contain no alcohol
  • be pH neutral
  • be soap free and
  • contain no fragrances.

The intimate area has a sensitive, slightly acidic environment that should not be disturbed under any circumstances in order to avoid infections.

Intimate shampoo

An elementary part of proper intimate hygiene is the wash lotion. There are several brands that enable optimal cleaning of the intimate area with various intimate lotions. These include Nivea, Sagrotan, Jessa or facelle.

Product Listing – Top 3:

✔ Nivea intimate washing lotion Intimo Mild Fresh | Price EUR 1.95 | Rating 4.7/5

✔ Sagrotan – Intima Liasan Intimate Wash Lotion | Price EUR 4.99 | Rating 4.1/5

✔ Jessa – Intimate Care Wash Lotion Sensitive fragrance-free | Price EUR 1.95 | Rating 4.7/5

From left to right: Nivea, Sagrotan and Jessa intimate shampoo

intimate wipes

Before making love, both partners should clean their intimate areas thoroughly. Even if that is the theory, it cannot always be implemented in practice. If you are spontaneously active outside your own four walls, it is difficult to wash and hygienically clean yourself with intimate lotion. Intimate wipes can help here: these cleaning wipes are similar to wet wipes and are designed for the intimate area . They are ideal for quickly cleaning the intimate area when no bathroom is available. So it is possible to be fresh and hygienic  even during spontaneous sexual intercourse .

Product Listing – Top 3 :

✔ Sagrotan – Sensitive care wipes, 30 pieces | Price EUR 1.45 | Rating 4.5/5

✔ Jessa – Intimate care wipes, 20 pieces | Price EUR 1.95 | Rating 4.2/5

✔ Multi Gyn – IntiFresh, 12 pcs | Price EUR 2.95 | Rating 4.5/5

From left to right: Sagrotan, Jessa and Multi-Gyn intimate wipes

intimate cream

No hair removal products should be used in the intimate area . These can dry out and irritate the skin, making it easier for bacteria to cause infection.

Creams that can usually be used in the intimate area are antifungal agents from the pharmacy and probiotic intimate creams . These allow the skin to breathe better and protect against chafing in the external intimate area.

Intimate shaving in men

Hair growth in the intimate area presents both sexes with the same challenge: How do you shave this area without the formation of small pimples? There are several ways to have a comfortable feeling in the crotch after shaving. >

  • First, the long hair should be trimmed
  • Then carry out an intimate cleansing : The warm water and lotion remove dirt and sebum and the hair becomes softer.
  • Now apply a shaving foam about a finger thick and let it take effect
  • Now shave with a sharp (new) blade in the direction of hair growth
  • Skin folds can easily be pulled taut with the other hand
  • Then shower the intimate area with cold water: the skin cools down, the blood vessels contract and there are fewer skin irritations and pimples

The explanations and lists of possible treatment options are purely informative and do not replace consultation with your doctor or the explanations about the intake, mode of action and side effects from the product-specific leaflet.

Isabel D White

Isabel D White

Isabel led the Royal Marsden Hospital (London) psychosexual therapy service until 2019. She works in partnership with individuals & couples to explore physical, emotional & relationship factors that contribute to sexual difficulties after cancer. These include: low desire, erection, arousal or orgasmic difficulties, sexual pain & sexual avoidance. She adopts an integrative approach to personalized therapy using psychosexual therapy (sensate focus framework), biomedical management (erectile dysfunction medication & devices, menopause & vaginal health strategies, sexual aids) & psychoeducation.

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    Isabel D White

    Isabel D White

    Isabel led the Royal Marsden Hospital (London) psychosexual therapy service until 2019. She works in partnership with individuals & couples to explore physical, emotional & relationship factors that contribute to sexual difficulties after cancer. These include: low desire, erection, arousal or orgasmic difficulties, sexual pain & sexual avoidance. She adopts an integrative approach to personalized therapy using psychosexual therapy (sensate focus framework), biomedical management (erectile dysfunction medication & devices, menopause & vaginal health strategies, sexual aids) & psychoeducation.

    We will be happy to hear your thoughts

        Leave a reply

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