Difference between Vaginoplasty and Labiaplasty

It is a common experience for women to have sagging vaginal structures during ageing or after childbirth. With this problem, many women are looking for ways to reshape and rejuvenate their genitals. Several surgical options, like vaginoplasty and labiaplasty, can help reshape the genital area which eventually can help you regain your beauty and confidence after an injury, delivery, or ageing. 

While they may seem similar, there are quite some differences that you must be aware of while considering vaginal rejuvenation. Continue reading the blog to learn what is the difference between vaginoplasty and labiaplasty.

What is Vaginoplasty?

Vaginoplasty, also known as vaginal reconstructive surgery, is a procedure for vaginal reconstruction or repair performed by addressing the vaginal muscles. The surgery is well-suited for women who experience a wide or loose vagina after childbirth, due to ageing or weight changes. 

Tightening muscles and soft tissues in the vagina through vaginoplasty increases friction and sensation during sexual intercourse. As a result, rejuvenating the vagina after vaginoplasty can help women with a boost of confidence, especially in intimate settings. 

The procedure typically involves making incisions in the vaginal tissue, removing excess skin, and then stitching the remaining tissue back together to create a tighter vaginal canal. 

The procedure may be performed under general anesthesia or local anesthesia with sedation, depending on the patient's preferences and the surgeon's recommendation.

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What is Labiaplasty?

Labiaplasty is a surgical procedure performed to reduce the size of the labia (skin folds that surround the urethra and vagina). The labia’s skin, size, and colour vary from one woman to another.

Some women may have congenital defects that affect the size and shape of their labia. Whereas some may experience a change in the labia structure after childbirth.  

Excess skin of the labia can get pinched and twisted, causing discomfort during physical activities, exercise, and sexual intercourse. Labiaplasty can be helpful for these problems. It is also performed for cosmetic reasons like restoring a more youthful look after childbirth or ageing.

Additionally, labiaplasty can help resolve the following issues:

  1. Irritation after sex
  2. Bulge from the labia while wearing tight clothes
  3. Multi-directional urine stream

The procedure typically involves making incisions in the labial tissue and removing or reshaping the excess skin. The incisions are then closed with dissolvable stitches, and the labial tissue is reshaped to create a more desirable appearance. 

Labiaplasty can be performed under local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia, depending on the patient's preference and the surgeon's recommendation.

Vaginoplasty vs Labiaplasty

Now that you know what is labiaplasty and vaginoplasty, let’s look at their differences. Even though surgery for both vaginoplasty and labiaplasty is performed in similar parts of the body, there are several differences between vaginoplasty and labiaplasty’s meaning, need, procedure, etc.

The following table compares vaginoplasty vs labiaplasty.

Parameter Vaginoplasty Labiaplasty
Purpose To tighten and reshape the vaginal canal To reshape the labia minora or majora
Area of Focus Vaginal canal Labia minora or majora
Duration 15 to 20 minutes 30 to 40 minutes
  1. Women who want repair from childbirth defects or trauma to improve sexual intercourse
  2. Women who underwent radiation or excision of the vagina to treat cancer or other medical conditions
  3. Women born with congenital abnormalities that affect the vaginal development
  4. Transgender individuals seeking gender affirmation surgery
  1. Women who experience discomfort and irritation during physical activities, exercise, and sexual intercourse 
  2. Women who want to improve hygiene as excess labial tissue can make cleansing difficult and harbour bacteria
  3. Women who want to reduce asymmetry of the labia minora or labia majora
  4. Used as a part of gender-affirming surgery
  1. Improves sexual satisfaction and self-esteem
  2. Reduces pain and discomfort during intercourse
  1. Improves the overall appearance of the vaginal area
  2. Reduces discomfort and irritation caused by larger labial tissue
  3. Boost’s self-confidence regarding vaginal appearance
Recovery Time A few weeks to a few months Four to six months
  1. Dyspareunia (painful intercourse)
  2. Loss of sensation
  1. Bleeding
  2. Haematoma (bruising)
  3. Scarring
  4. Infection
  5. Wound breakdown
  6. Removal of too much tissue or not enough tissue
  7. Pain during sex or loss of sensitivity
Cost ₹ 5,000 to ₹ 25,000 ₹ 20,000 to ₹ 75,000
Need of Hospitalization No No
  1. Improved tightness and appearance of vaginal canal
  2. Increased patient satisfaction
  3. Reduced pain during sexual activity
  4. Transgender people achieve preferred gender identity
  1. Improved appearance and size of labia
  2. Reduced pain during physical activity
  3. Increased confidence in personal appearance

Which is Right for You - Vaginoplasty or Labiaplasty?

Both vaginoplasty and labiaplasty offer some of the same benefits to women while addressing different problems. 

  1. Vaginoplasty can be the right procedure for you if you are experiencing a loose or wide vagina with decreased sensation during sexual intercourse.
  2. You may want to consider labiaplasty if you struggle with a stretched labia minora, causing pain and discomfort during physical activities, exercise, and intercourse.

Depending on your needs, these procedures can either be performed alone or together as a rejuvenation package. Usually, a combination of vaginoplasty and labiaplasty is performed to correct a cosmetic or functional issue.

Dos and Don’ts after Vaginoplasty and Labiaplasty

After a vaginoplasty and labiaplasty, the recovery period can take a few weeks. Some do’s and don’ts that you must follow during recovery include:

  1. Do not swim, take baths or use hot tubs for eight weeks.
  2. Do not engage in strenuous activities for six weeks.
  3. Do not ride a bike for three months.
  4. Do not have sexual intercourse for three months.
  5. Avoid tobacco for at least a month.
  6. Take pain medications only when necessary.
  7. You can shower after the first post-operative visit.
  8. Sit on a doughnut ring for comfort.
  9. Wash the affected area thoroughly with water before and after urinating.

When to Consult a Doctor?

While vaginoplasty and labiaplasty are not very risky procedures, they may lead to some complications like any other surgery. You should call your healthcare provider if you experience the following post-surgery:

  1. Excessive bleeding
  2. Seeing clumps of blood
  3. Pain that does not improve with medications
  4. Abnormal swelling
  5. Infections, which can cause fever and discoloured pus or discharge from the incision
  6. Severe pain while peeing or pooping
  7. Vomiting


Vaginoplasty and labiaplasty are effective vaginal rejuvenation procedures to help women reconstruct their genital area, relieve pain and discomfort during physical activities, and improve self-confidence.

While both these procedures are performed on the genitals, labiaplasty and vaginoplasty’s meanings, purposes, and procedures differ. Labiaplasty is performed to reduce the size of the labia. On the other hand, vaginoplasty is performed to repair the vagina. 

If you are considering getting a vaginoplasty or labiaplasty, you can make an appointment with an expert at HexaHealth TODAY! We will help you understand the differences between vaginoplasty and labiaplasty and determine the right procedure. Furthermore, we will connect you with the top gynaecologists or plastic surgeons from the most trusted hospitals at an affordable price.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Vaginoplasty?

Vaginoplasty’s meaning is quite clear from its name. It is a procedure to repair or reconstruct a vagina. It aims to tighten the vagina, which becomes wide or loose from childbirth or ageing.

Apart from childbirth defects, vaginoplasty also repairs the vagina exposed to radiation or excision or developed abnormally due to congenital issues. Furthermore, it helps women boost their self-confidence during sexual intercourse.

What is Labiaplasty?

Like vaginoplasty, labiaplasty’s meaning can also be understood from its name, labia (folds of skin around the vaginal opening) and plasty (repair or restoration of any part).

Labiaplasty is an outpatient surgery performed to alter the appearance of the labia. It is usually performed to reduce the size of the labia minora, preventing it from getting pinched and causing discomfort during physical activities.

What is the difference between vaginoplasty and labiaplasty?

The key difference between vaginoplasty and labiaplasty is part of the female genitals on which the surgery is performed. Vaginoplasty is performed to repair the vagina by altering the shape and structure of the vaginal opening.

On the other hand, labiaplasty is performed to alter labia and reduce its size, decreasing discomfort caused during physical activities, exercise, and intercourse.

Does labiaplasty make you tighter?

Labiaplasty is a plastic surgery that includes reducing or reshaping the labia minora (inner lips) or labia majora (outer lips). The surgeon removes excess fat and labial tissue during the procedure to make it tighter.

Who should consider vaginoplasty or labiaplasty?

Women well-suited for vaginoplasty or labiaplasty include:

  1. Want repair from childbirth defects to improve sexual functioning.
  2. Whose vagina has stretched or become slack as a result of ageing, pregnancy, or weight loss.
  3. Experience pain during physical activities or sexual intercourse.
  4. Are not easily aroused post-vaginal births.
  5. Want a more streamlined aesthetic to the labia.
  6. Born with congenital abnormalities affecting vaginal development.
  7. Seek gender affirmation surgery.

How long until labiaplasty is fully healed?

After labiaplasty, you may experience a reduction in the initial swelling, soreness and temporary discolouration within the first couple weeks of the surgery. Most swelling will subside after about six weeks. However, the complete healing before the final labiaplasty results can take four to six months.

How do I know if vaginoplasty or labiaplasty is a good solution for me?

You can know if vaginoplasty or labiaplasty is a good solution by evaluating your problems. If you have a wide or loose vagina that has lost its original tightness, you can get vaginoplasty to reconstruct the vagina.

On the other hand, if you are bothered by your labia appearance or experience discomfort while performing physical exercises, wearing tight clothes, or engaging in sexual activities, you can opt for labiaplasty.

What should I expect in terms of likely outcomes after vaginoplasty or labiaplasty?

When performed by qualified surgeons, patients rarely experience complications after vaginoplasty or labiaplasty. Recovery from vaginoplasty can last anywhere between a few weeks and a few months, after which the results will be completely visible.

For labiaplasty, you may experience a reduction in swelling and soreness within the first couple of weeks, but the full recovery may take four to six months. The results of labiaplasty will be visible once the swelling completely goes away.

Is there any scarring associated with vaginoplasty or labiaplasty surgeries?

Whenever an incision is made on the body, it leaves a scar. However, the scars left after labiaplasty tend to blend into the tissue and are nearly unnoticeable. The natural appearance and texture of labia minora include folds and wrinkles that allow the blending of scars once healed.

The scar’s shape and thickness depend on the surgery technique adopted. For vaginoplasty, the surgeon makes incisions on the mucous walls inside the vagina. Therefore, there is no visible scarring.

How much does labiaplasty cost?

The cost of labiaplasty in India ranges from ₹ 20,000 to ₹ 75,000, with an average cost of about ₹ 47,500. The cost of the procedure varies depending on several factors, such as the patient’s physical condition, the type of clinic or hospital, diagnostic tests, consultation fees, hospitalisation charges, anaesthesia fees, room charges, the technique used, post-operative care, etc.

Are there any similarities between vaginoplasty and labiaplasty?

The primary similarity between vaginoplasty and labiaplasty is that they are both vaginal rejuvenation treatments performed to improve the appearance of the genital area. The two procedures also offer similar benefits, such as a boost in self-confidence and a reduction in discomfort during sexual intercourse.

About the Author

Shivani Arora

BA Journalism and Mass Communication

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