The parts of a girl's body that are in the genital area make up her sexual and reproductive systems. Female sex organs are also called reproductive organs because they are the parts of the body that allow women to reproduce (to have babies). You have reproductive and sexual organs on the inside and outside of your body.
Outside Your Body
All of the external parts of the female reproductive system taken together are called the vulva, which means covering. The vulva covers the opening to the vagina, the labia, the clitoris and the opening for the urethra (where pee comes out).
Pronounced lay-bee-ja, the word labia means "lips" in Latin. Every girl has two sets of lips. The outside lips are thicker folds of skin that have pubic hair on them. Inside the outer lips is a second set of smaller, softer lips. Some women's inner lips stick out between their outer lips. Both outer and inner lips can be any colour, size or shape.
Pronounced klit-o-rus, this is a small little knob about the size of a pea located toward the front of your vulva where the folds of your labia join. It is very sensitive to touch and is the only organ (in both women and men) whose only purpose is sexual pleasure.
Inside Your Body
This is hollow, muscular canal that leads from the vaginal opening to the uterus. It is made of a special kind of skin that stretches easily during sex and during birth. During sexual relations, the vagina receives the penis. During menstruation, the menstrual flow leaves the body through the vagina. In natural childbirth, the baby is born through the vagina. That is why it is sometimes called the birth canal.
Pronounced high-men, this is a thin membrane or tissue that surrounds or covers the opening of the vagina in some girls. There are many different types of hymen – some just surround the opening others cover it but have one or more holes in it. Some girls are born without hymen and others tear their hymen during everyday activities or sports. If you still have your hymen when you first have sex, it may tear and can bleed lightly.
The cervix is the lower, narrow part of the uterus. About half of the cervix is inside the vagina. It has a small opening that connects the uterus and vagina. Menstrual flow leaves the uterus through this opening and sperm enter the uterus through it.
Also known as your ‘womb,’ this is where your baby grows and develops when you’re pregnant.
You have two ovaries, one on each side of your uterus. These produce your eggs. The ovaries also make the female hormones called oestrogen and progesterone.
These two tubes lead from your ovaries to your uterus. They are very tiny – only as big as two human hairs. The eggs travel down these tubes after ovulation and the sperm travel up them. If the egg and sperm meet, the egg will be fertilized and you may become pregnant.
No two girls look exactly the same down there. It is good to look at and understand your genitals and how they work. That way you can spot anything wrong and get care early.