Sexual lubricants are great products to use during all kinds of sex, including anal sex, vaginal sex and even masturbation for both men and women. Why do we like lube so much? It makes sex feel great and helps you last longer than if you’re relying on your body’s own lubricants or – eek! – saliva to do the job for you. Here’s the lowdown on the different kinds of lube on the market and how to use them.
Why Do You Need Lube?
If you haven’t used lube before, you definitely need to try it! Chances are, you’ll never go back to having sex without it. Sexual lubricant makes sex feel better, because it reduces the amount of friction during sex. Sex feels smoother, slicker and lasts longer than if you’re just using saliva or not using anything at all.
Water Based Lubricants
Water based lubes are by far the best lubes out there. They’re simply made of water and glycerine and are extremely cost effective. They’re easy to use and easy to clean – in fact, you can clean up water based lube with just water, no soap required! It doesn’t stain your clothes or your sheets, but it will wear out quickly since it’s a thinner style lube that closely mimics a woman’s natural lubricant. You can’t use water based lube in the water, because it will rinse off quickly, but other than that, water based lube is definitely your go-to lube. Keep it by your bedside and use as necessary. Many lubes even come with a convenient pump that makes using it a breeze.
Silicone Based Lubricants
Silicone based lubes are a little thicker and are much better to use in the water because they don’t rinse off as easily. You can still clean up silicone lubricant easily with soap and water (and maybe a little elbow grease) but it’s great if you’re having sex or masturbating in the shower or pool. It also lasts longer than water based lubricant, so it’s a little better for those marathon sex sessions. Silicone based lube is safe for most sex toys, but it cannot be used with toys made from silicone! If you have a silicone toy, you’re better off using water based lube. Silicone lube isn’t recommended for frequent vaginal use because although the vagina is self cleaning, it’s difficult to get the silicone based lube out.
Oil And Petroleum Based Lubes
Oil and petroleum based lubes are the hardest to clean and are very thick. They can stain your clothes and sheets and can’t be used with latex at all. If you use latex condoms or have a latex sex toy, oil or petroleum based lubricant will begin to break down the latex. Not so bad if you’re just using a sex toy, but if you’re using a condom to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, oil or petroleum lube can make the condom completely ineffective. Water or silicone based lubes are definitely better choices all around! If you must use an oil based lube, use it only for male masturbation. Women can use it during masturbation too (if the toys aren’t latex) but it is extremely hard to clean the vagina afterwards.
Flavored And Scented Lubes
Flavored or scented lubricants can be both silicone or water based (most likely water based) and are excellent to use for oral sex or just simply if you want a lube that smells and tastes good. There’s no difference between the effectiveness of a flavored or scented lube and a plain one, so it’s definitely a personal choice. There are many different flavors on the market, including yummy ones like strawberry or strawberry-kiwi.
Warming lubes can also be silicone or water based, but are most likely water based. A component within the formula of the lube makes the lube warm up during sex, and continue to get warmer during intercourse or masturbation. Warming lubes are great to have on hand if you want something a little different during sex, however, some people aren’t fond of just how warm and tingly warming lubricants can get when using them. If a warming lube is too hot for you, try diluting it with some regular lube for just a little extra kick.
Numbing And Desensitizing Lubes
There are numbing and desensitizing lubes and creams available on the market, but they do not come recommended. These are most often used for anal sex, since anal sex (especially the first time) can be quite painful. Numbing lubes will ease the pain of anal sex or even first time vaginal sex, but being pain free doesn’t necessarily mean there isn’t something wrong going on. You may not be able to feel the pain if your anus or lower colon tears, but tears can still happen and land you right in the emergency room. To put it bluntly, you need to be able to feel pain during anal sex so you can stop if something gets to painful or you feel like something might be wrong. Anuses aren’t made to accomodate large objects such as toys or penises (although they can) and the result can be a tear or even a bowel perforation. Don’t use numbing or desensitizing lube during anal sex because if you start to feel a lot of pain, it’s time to stop.
All Natural And Sensitive Skin Lubricants
An uncommon yet growing category of sexual lubricants are ones that are made for people with very sensitive skin. These lubes can be made with all natural ingredients and without dyes and perfumes that can be potentially irritating. If you have very sensitive skin and are using “free & clear” detergents and soaps in your home, consider using an all natural or sensitive skin lube during sex too.