Personal lubricants are used during sexual activity like sex or masturbation to reduce friction and increase pleasure. They help to reduce the friction between body parts like the vagina, penis, anus, or between sex toys and the body.

Mila Lube postFirstly, here’s a breakdown of the three types of lube: water-based, silicone-based, and oil-based. Water-based is one of the most prevalent and commonly used all-purpose lubrication. It’s generally compatible with all toys, and latex and polyurethane barrier methods. However it’s important to read the instructions of a particular brand. It comes in a lot of varieties but often requires reapplication. It’s water soluble, as its name implies, thus it washes off easily and can dry more quickly than the other types.

Silicone-based lubes are longer lasting than water-based ones, and they take more of an effort to wash off. It is compatible with latex and polyurethane condoms and other barrier methods. It’s also compatible with glass, metal, and plastic materials. This type is best for anal sex, since the anus and rectum aren’t self-lubricating. Silicone-based lube will not be absorbed by the skin or mucous membranes, thus lasting much longer, and leading to more comfortable sex. Silicone is also very safe to use, and is good for those who have sensitive skin. One should not, however, use silicone-based lubrication on silicone toys, since silicone on silicone will cause the toy to break down.

The third kind is oil-based. Oil-based lubes also last very long, but are not safe to use with latex condoms or any other latex-based safer sex supplies. Another caution regarding oil-based lubes is the possibility of irritation or bacterial infection if residue remains inside the vagina or rectum. This is why oil-based lubes are generally considered safe for external use only.

Now, before you scoff, “but I don’t need to use that,” I just want to take some time and highlight some of the wonderful benefits of a little (or a lot) of lube during sexual activity! Lube can be a wonderful ally when it comes to sexual pleasure.

  1.  A lot of people complain that condoms take away from the sexual experience because they “don’t feel like the real thing.” Condoms can increase the friction when having sex, possibly leading to dryness and not so pleasant sensations. However, adding a couple drops of lube to the inside of the tip and then a little more on the outside when the condom is fully on, can lead to more comfortable and pleasurable sex for both partners!
  2.  Vaginal dryness happens. It can be brought on by a number of factors like stress, anxiety, hormonal changes, or medications. It happens and it’s nothing to be ashamed about. Lube is here to help you have a good time!
  3. There are so many kinds of lubes out there. Some are flavored, while others provide sensations like tingling or warming ones. It’s just important to note that flavored lube is only to be used for oral sex. Trying something fun and new can really enhance your sexual experience whether with a partner or on your own.
  4. Lube can also be used in foreplay, like when giving your partner a sensual massage.
  5. Lubrication is also a great idea when using toys, but be careful not to use silicone-based lube on silicone toys!

So go out there and make lube your friend! Find one that works for you; just remember to test it first in a small area to make sure nothing in the ingredients will cause you irritation. Have fun experimenting!

~ Mila

SHEP Candidate