Lube comes in all different kinds, consistencies, flavors and formulas. Here’s how to select the best one for what you’re going to be doing.
You’ve decided to go ahead and get some lube, but there are so many different kinds out there that it’s completely overwhelming! What kind do you get? How much money do you have to spend? Should you get one, two or four bottles? Should you get different kinds or stock up on one kind? Here’s what you want to know about what kind of lube to get for what you want to use it for.
What It Is: Water based lubricant is just that – a lubricant made with mostly water and other inert ingredients. Water based lube feels the most natural, although it can come in both slippery thin versions and thick gel versions. It’s the most condom compatible lube and the easiest to wash off. It almost never stains sheets!
Don’t Use With: Underwater sex or sex in the shower. It will rinse away almost immediately.
Best For: Vaginal sex, use with sex toys
What It Is: Silicone lube is not water based – it’s made from silicone (a type of plastic) and is typically “oilier” feeling than water based lube. (Never use oil for lube – it will ruin any latex product including condoms). It lasts longer and doesn’t wash away that easily. It requires washing off with soap and water and can be more difficult to get out of intimate areas like the vagina. It can also stain sheets and clothing, so be careful!
Don’t Use With: Silicone sex toys. Silicone + silicone doesn’t mix – it will degrade the toy and the outside will start to get sticky and gross looking!
Best For: Underwater sex, anal sex
What It Is: For sensitive women, there are “all natural” or “hypoallergenic” lubricant formulas available. Some are even considered “organic.” Most, if not all of them are water based, since silicone can be more irritating to some individuals. All natural lubes are usually unscented and feel very natural.
Don’t Use With: Nothing. These lubes are very versatile!
Best For: Women with very sensitive vaginal tissues, or men who have sensitive penises. Also good for couples who simply desire to use lubricant that is closest to their own natural bodily fluids.
What It Is: Flavored lube is almost always water based, since consumers typically associate flavored lube with “edible lube.” And it usually is edible, although there isn’t really a lubricant out there that doesn’t taste like some sort of poorly flavored plastic. It’s tolerable though, if you must use lube during oral sex. However, the scents are what make flavored lube so great! They come in a variety of scents like chocolate, mint, strawberry and more. When using them for anal sex, the scents can come in handy when covering up any unwanted body odors.
Don’t Use With: Some flavored lubes are made with sugar, which can cause yeast infections in women. Read your labels carefully!
Best For: Oral sex or anytime you want a better smelling lubricant
What It Is: Desensitizing lubricant is a special formula with “numbing” ingredients that numb the surface of the skin it’s applied to for a short period of time. This type of lube was created specifically with anal sex in mind, but should not be used for this.
Don’t Use With: Anything! Desensitizing lube was created with anal sex in mind, since anal sex tends to be painful when not done correctly. However, if you use this type of lube with anal sex, it can prevent you from feeling pain – which can be a very, very bad thing contrary to popular belief.
You may think you want to numb yourself against feeling pain during anal sex, but you need to be aware if something hurts while you’re engaging in that type of activity. Tearing and bleeding can occur and when severe, require immediate medical attention. If you can’t feel what’s going on, you may not know there’s an issue until it’s too late.
Best For: Nothing, really. You can’t use it for oral sex because you don’t want a numb tongue (what good would that do?) and you don’t want your lover to have a numb vagina and clitoris either. You can use it if you’re a particularly fast ejaculator, but it’s not going to numb you to feeling the pressure of stroking during intercourse, which is typically what causes a man to orgasm anyways. It may buy you a minute or two, but it’s not really worth it.
What It Is: Like desensitizing lubes, stimulating lubricants are either water or silicone based lubes that are made with special ingredients to stimulate the vagina or penis during sex. There are warming lubes or cooling lubes, both of which provide a tingling sensation. Some formulas of warming lubes get really, really hot and can burn quite a bit, while most cooling lubes aren’t as strong. These can be fun to play with!
Don’t Use With: Oral sex. Do you really want your tongue to be on fire?
Best For: Experimenting with a drop or two on the penis or the clitoris. Fun for handjobs! Use in moderation.
What Not To Use
Never, ever use oil based products like olive oil, coconut oil, baby oil or mineral oil during sex. These will break down latex condoms and latex sex toys faster than you can say, “Oh ****!” Technically, you “can” use oils like this if you’re in a monogamous sexual relationship with someone and you are both STD free and are either trying for a baby or are protected against pregnancy in other ways (such as birth control), but water and silicone based lubricants are so much better and more natural feeling. They’re also easier to wash off!
Saliva is NOT lube. No matter how many times you’ve used it in a “pinch” and it’s worked okay, it’s just not the same. It doesn’t last as long, there’s usually not enough of it and it’s really not that erotic to be smearing your spit all over yourself and your girl’s vagina during sex. Just get some lube, okay?
Lotion isn’t lube either. You may have used it during masturbation and sure it was thick, but it was better than nothing, right? It’s not going to work that way if you’re with a woman. It’s too thick and it will likely irritate her delicate vaginal tissues. Lotion is meant for the outside, not the inside.
Food Products Like Mayonnaise, Etc.
If the thought of using condiments like mayo for lube makes you shudder and sends you running in the other direction, good for you! However, people have been known to use whatever they have on hand instead of just going out and buying a bottle of damn lube. It’s ridiculous, yes. But it happens. Mayo and other condiments can have oil in them, so refer back to why you should not use oil as a lubricant during sex. Also, using condiments (unless it’s licking chocolate sauce off her nipples) during sex is just plain nasty.
These are oil based products. Read the label.
Lube is a great item to have on hand and it can be found almost everywhere, including your local supermarkets and drugstores. It’s inexpensive and you don’t have to be a certain age to buy it. Try several different brands, types and consistencies to find out what works for you and your partner! Sampler packs are great for this because it allows you to try different brands without spending money and wasting an entire bottle of lube if you find that you don’t like something. Above all, have fun with it because that’s what it’s all about!