The vulva is one of the parts that comprise the external female genitalia. The female’s external genitalia include the labia majora, labia minora, mons pubis, clitoris, vestibular bulbs, vaginal vestibule, and the vestibular glands. These parts are the ones surrounding the vaginal orifice. Read on to the definitions of each of these parts.

Mons Pubis

This is the subcutaneous pad of adipose connective tissue, and it puts a cover on the symphysis pubis. This part of the external genitalia is covered with pubic hair once a female gets sexually mature. It protects the vulva and the symphysis pubis during sexual intercourse.

Labia Majora

This part of the external genitalia is composed of two folds of skin shaped longitudinally. Within this part lies the smooth muscle, the connective tissues, and the adipose connective tissues that keep the labia majora in its shape. When a girl develops sexually, this part would also be covered and protected with pubic hair. This part, together with the mons pubis work hand in hand in a continuous manner. These two parts undergo segregation, particularly of brief longitudinal nature, and gets reunited in the perineum. During their segregation, the pudental cleft will be visible.

It is in this part of the external genitalia where the sebaceous glands and the sweat glands lie. The other parts of the vulva rely on the labia majora for protection, and this is the female counterpart for the male scrotum. The labia majora protects the clitoris partially, by forming a hood like covering in it.

Labia Minora

This part of the external genitalia is located in the middle of the labia majora. It is hairless, and just like the labia majora, some of the sebaceous glands lie here. The labia minora gives protection to the urethral and the vaginal opening.


This portion of the external genitalia is situated in the upper part of the pudental cleft. Its glans is surrounded with erectile tissue, and is exposed slightly. The clitoris is also filled with sensory nerve endings, and has 2 main functions: it gives sexual sensation and urinary release at the same time. This part is hidden underneath the labia majora, and normally measures around 2 cm (and half a centimeter in diameter). There are two columns of erectile tissues that lie within the clitoris named the corpora cavernosa.

Vaginal Vestibule

It is a cleft that appears longitudinally, and is protected by the labia minora. This consists of two vestibule glands namely: the major and minor vestibule glands, and these are responsible for the lubricating the vagina at the phase of sexual excitement.

Also known in the name Bartholin’s glands, the vaginal vestibule is situated in the opening of the vagina.

Vestibular Bulbs

This portion of the external genitalia are made up of vascular erectile tissue. It is located just underneath the vaginal vestibule’s walls, and these bulbs are separated by the urethra and the vagina.

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