One of the problems many toy owners face is selecting the correct lube for their toys. If you’re new to the world of sex toys, the issue may not be apparent. But just like the Byrds said, to everything there is a season, and to every sex toy, there is a proper lube. After all, you need a little slip n’slide even when you’re just trying to cram it in there.
The most important thing is figuring out which lube works best for your body. If you have any sort of skin sensitivities, this is particularly important. Don’t rely on lubricated condoms to make this choice, either. Most of the time, lubricated condoms do not come packaged with the ingredients of their lubes on their packaging. Don’t ask us how they get away with it. Instead, head to your local adult store and pick up some lube samples. Once you know what works best for your body’s chemistry, you can limit down your choices for your toys.
The first thing you’ll have to look at is what your toy is made of. Sometimes, this can be very difficult– the sex toy industry is completely unregulated, believe it or not. If you don’t know what your toy is made of, it’s a good idea to call the company that it comes from. Early2Bed, a wonderful store out of Chicago, also has an excellent guide on how to tell what material your toy is made from.
Once you get those two things squared away, it’s time to look at your options!
The general rule of thumb is that you can’t use silicone lube on silicone toys. Much like using an oil-based lube on a latex condom (latex is oil-based), combining the two will lead to irreparable damage.
But this isn’t always the case. Higher-quality toys that are made of silicone do not always react to silicone lubes. Of course, every toy lube combo is different, and the only way to tell is by testing it. Instead of dumping a bunch of lube all of your new toy and potentially destroying it, do a spot test by putting a tiny dot of lube near the base of the toy. Rub it in well, then let it sit for a couple minutes before washing off. If that spot still feels the same as the rest of the toy, you’re good to go!
If you don’t want to take that risk, there’s always water-based lubes. For the most part, water-based lubes are the best choice for many toys. This is because they won’t destroy your toy.
The ‘for-the-most-part’ comes in with anal play. We’re big advocates for using silicone-based lubes in anal play. The anus is made to absorb water, so water-based lubes quickly become tacky and dry when But if you have a silicone butt plug or dildo, that doesn’t seem like an option, does it?
Our favorite water-based lube is Pjur’s Aqua For Women. It stays on longer than most water-based lubes, plus it’s specially formulated to be as unobtrusive as possible to a woman’s natural floral.
Oil-based lubes can be used with some toys, but it isn’t always suggested. If any part of the toy has latex in it, including if you’re using it with a latex condom, just like the silicone-on-silicone, oil-on-latex is a big no-no. Not only can it eat through a condom, potentially exposing you to microbes if the toy is porous and has been used by someone else, but it can also just flat-out destroy the toy.
Another problem with oil-based lubes is that they aren’t always the most hygienic. Oils can cause bacteria to get trapped in places you may not want, potentially leading to infections and other problems. If you have sensitive skin, oil may not be a good option for you.
WET’s Inttimo Massage Oil line is an example of an oil-based lube, but these can also include olive oil, coconut oil, most hand and body lotions, and petroleum based products like vaseline.
Our favorite lube to use with toys is WET’s Synergy. Synergy is a hybrid– meaning that it’s part water-based and part silicone-based. Somehow, WET managed to get all of the positive traits of both lubricants into one, which means that not only is this lube safe with toys, it doesn’t get tacky quickly and is great for anal!
As always, if you do notice that your toy is having a reaction to a lubricant, stop using it immediately. Wash the toy off. Certain types of damage can make the toy unusable– it’s best in that case to get rid of it and get a new one. Check out how you can safely recycle your damaged and unwanted toys!