Sarifah Nurhayati is five months’ pregnant with her second child. Her post-partum plan, she says, includes getting her vagina “back in good shape to keep my husband happy”.
The 27-year-old, who lives in Depok, in greater Jakarta, plans to use a tongkat Madura, or Madura stick – a cigar-shaped product promoted as a sexual-health aid that erodes gradually in the vagina – to achieve that goal.
The stick leaves the vagina drier, tighter and stronger, she says. Some experts, on the other hand, warn that it could also cause infection.
Sarifah says she slides the stick into her vagina and leaves it for two to three minutes before taking it out. When finished, “just wash the stick, air dry it, put it back in the box, and you can use it again”, she adds. Sarifah can use one 20 times before replacing it.
“When used regularly, it will make you feel like a virgin again,” she explains, adding that she has been using the tool for four years.
Sarifah’s husband, Reno Waldi, sells Madura sticks in his Depok shop. “An average of seven to eight sticks are sold each day here,” he says. “The prices define the quality of the sticks. The cheaper they are, the easier they break. You don’t want that to happen while using it.”