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What is Queefing, Anyway?

Queef. Vaginal fart. Sexhale. That thing that sometimes happens during doggy-style that erupts your super sexy moment into a fit of giggles.

Whatever you call it, queefing is a thing that happens, and it's totally normal and totally. not. gross. While people like to refer to queefs as "vaginal farts," they are actually nothing like farts. Flatulence happens when gas leaves your digestive track and originates when you swallow extra air (caused by carbonated drinks, chewing gum, or eating too fast) or from the breakdown of food in your intestines. So what is queefing? It's simply the noise that air makes when it's being pushed out of the vagina as a result of sex, exercise, or something else.

As Shape sexpert Dr. Logan Levkoff explains, vaginas are not straight, smooth passageways, and all those folds, turns, and ridges mean air doesn't always move in and out with ease. Think about it: During sex, the penis is pumping air in and out of the vagina, smushing the air that's already in there, and pushing more in each time. It's honestly a miracle we don't queef more often. (It's just one of 5 Embarrassing (But Normal) Side Effects of Sex that you need to get used to).

But it's not limited to the bedroom; queefs can happen during exercise too, from air moving around and getting expelled. So next time one slips out during downward dog (we all know a lot of embarrassing things can happen in yoga) or when you're trying that new steamy sex position, laugh it off. Because, honestly, the only thing funnier than queefs are the Urban Dictionary entires for the word. (Only click if you dare.)

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