Color Guide to Vaginal Discharge | Dr. Monika Agrawal

Vaginal discharge is a normal and healthy bodily function that can vary in color and texture depending on a woman’s menstrual cycle. It is important to be aware of the colors of your discharge, as this can indicate different health concerns. In this article, we will discuss the different colors of vaginal discharge and what they could mean for your overall health. We will also explain how the color can change from day to day, and how it depends on the menstrual cycle.

What is vaginal discharge?

 A fluid secreted from tiny glands in the vagina and cervix. The fluid leaks remove old cells and debris, keeping the vagina and reproductive tract clean and healthy. The amount of vaginal discharge can vary significantly from person to person. The color can change from day to day, and also depends on the menstrual cycle.

Day 1-5 (beginning of cycle)

Discharge is usually red or bloody, as the body sheds the uterine lining.

Day 6-14 (following period)

Notices less vaginal discharge than usual. As the egg starts developing, the cervical mucus will become cloudy. It may feel sticky.

Day 14-25 (a few days before ovulation)

The mucus will be thin and slippery. After mucus will go back to being cloudy, white or yellow, possibly sticky.

Day 25-28

The cervical mucus will lighten, and a person will see less of it, getting another period.


The shade of red can vary from bright to a dark rust color. Red discharge is most commonly the result of bleeding during a period. Menstrual bleeding happens, on average, around every 28 days, though the normal range is between 21 and 35 days. A period typically lasts for 3–5 days.


The white shade can be from cream to light yellow. If there are no symptoms, white discharge is likely a sign of healthy lubrication.

If the white discharge looks like cottage cheese and has a strong odor, it is an indication of vaginal infection or yeast infection. It also has a strong-smelling discharge which can cause itching or irritation. It would help if you immediately visited the doctor.

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If the discharge color is slightly yellow, it indicates there is no problem. A darker shade of yellow or green usually signals bacteria or sexually transmitted infection. Check with your doctor if the vaginal discharge is thick or clumpy or has a foul odor.


Light or deeper pink, usually contains a bit of blood. Pink discharge usually occurs like spotting before periods. It is also a sign of implantation of early pregnancy. People also experience a bit of spotting after ovulation. 

Pink discharge can happen after sexual intercourse due to small tears or irritation in the vagina or cervix.


If the vaginal discharge is clear or whitish. Generally, the discharge is slippery and people might experience it before ovulation, during sexual intercourse, or during pregnancy.


Gray vaginal discharge is not healthy, it is usually a symptom of bacterial vaginosis.

Bacterial Vaginosis has other symptoms like

  • Itching 
  • Irritation
  • A strong smelly odor
  • Redness around the vaginal opening

If you are suffering from grey discharge you should immediately see a doctor. 

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Book a consultation if the vaginal discharge has an unusual smell or appearance. Keep a check if you experience the following vaginal symptoms:

  • Itching 
  • Pain & discomfort 
  • Discharge is like cottage cheese 
  • Spotting after sex regularly 
  • Grey, green or yellow discharge 
  • Smelly-strong odor 
  • During urination burning sensation 

Gynaec will examine your pelvis. They might also take a sample of the discharge. Usually, hormonal imbalances are responsible for vaginal discharge. Medication is necessary.