To lube or not to lube? That is the question.
Whether you have some trouble with natural self-lubrication or subscribe to the “more the merrier” mindset, lubricants are a great tool for both couple, group and solo play. In fact, one US study showed that “participants strongly endorsed the notion that lubricant use improved the sexual experience; in more than 70 percent of events, women indicated that using lubricants made sex feel very pleasurable and more comfortable.”
In saying this, we can safely assume that the ins and outs of your underwear drawer lube are generally not the first things you think of when getting busy in the bedroom.
So, how do you choose the best one for you? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
There are many benefits to using lube when playing with yourself or with a lover. Personal lubricant reduces friction when you’re getting busy, which essentially means that the condom you’re definitely wearing (cause, safe sex, right?), has a much lower chance of breaking. It's also a great tool to have in your sex toolkit to ensure that your sexual experiences, especially when engaging in anal play, are more pleasurable than they are painful.
There are a few things you should consider when choosing the perfect lube for you. Just as you would when shopping for groceries, consider any allergies you may have when finding a lubricant. Also, take a little extra care if you’re vegan - some brands use animal derivatives in the form of enzymes and beeswax, whilst others may not be cruelty-free and, as such, may test on animals.
Just like consent, always check in with your sexual partner/s, to see if they are ok with you applying products, just in case they may have any allergies or reservations with particular ingredients. It’s all about open communication when it comes to sex!
Variety is the spice of life, and the lube professionals around the globe seem to think so, too. There are three main types of personal lubricants to choose from - water-based, oil-based and silicone-based - and each has its own benefits and appeal.
For lube that feels natural, choose water-based. Water-based lubricant is our personal favourite here at Jonny HQ. This lube is - you guessed it - made from a water base, and because of its lightweight texture, mimics natural body lubrication more accurately than most oil-based lubes. Water-based is also the only type of lube you should use with condoms, as all other lubricants affect the efficacy of the latex.
In saying this, ensure you keep your water lubes away from any kind of water play, and because of its light consistency, you may need to re-apply when having sex or engaging in any sexual acts.
Silicone-based personal lubricant is a thick, slippery option and is great for people with vaginas who have trouble with natural self-lubrication. This type of lube is also great for anal play, as it is thicker in consistency and longer lasting than water-based lubes. Silicone lube can damage sex toys made from silicone, so try to avoid using these two together.
Oil-based lubricant is long-lasting lube and, like silicone-based lube, is thicker in texture than its water-based counterpart. However, it can stain easily, making it hard to get out of fabrics. Oil lubricants can also break down latex condoms, which can ultimately cause them to break and lead to an increased risk of STDs and unplanned pregnancy. With this in mind, we do not recommend using oil lubes with condoms.
Aah, Bonk Lube. The water-based personal lubricant of our dreams. This organically certified lightweight lube is hydrating, moisturising and safe; is pH balanced to protect you from bacterial and fungal infection; is free from Glycerine and other harsh chemicals; is non-sticky, unscented, non-flavoured and easy to clean; naturally mimics your body’s personal lubricant; and is perfect for those of you with sensitive skin.
We love Lucy (Lube). Lucy Lube (another water-based lubricant, of course) contains only the good stuff for the most sensitive part of your body. This Australian-made personal lube is pH friendly, vegan, and petrochemical, glycerine and paraben-free, and is totally safe to use when playing by yourself or with a friend.
Yep, you should probably be considering the type of lube you use with your sex toys, too. Sorry ‘bout it.
There are lubricants that should not be used with toys made from certain materials, as they can not only deteriorate the product itself but can also void any warranties attached to that toy. When using silicone-based lube, try to avoid any silicone sex toys because it can break down the material over time. Opt for toys made from harder materials - including hard plastic, glass or steel - when using silicone lube. Water-based lubricants are generally your best bet during any toy play.
Personal lubricants are designed for use in arguably the most delicate area of the body; however, not all of them have been designed equally. Avoid these ingredients like they're your ex, and opt for harsh chemical-free lube where possible.
Parabens mimic oestrogen, and have been linked to an increased risk in breast cancer.
Glycerin is essentially a sugar that can increase your chances of getting UTIs or yeast infection.
Benzocaine is a numbing agent found in lubricants, which ultimately limits your body’s perception of pain.
Petroleum/petroleum jelly can outstay its welcome in the vagina and mess with the pH levels. It’s also oil-based, which (as we now know) can weaken condoms.
Nonoxynol-9 is a spermicide that can kill the good bacteria in the vagina, resulting in infection, irritation and discomfort.
Most condoms come pre-lubricated for your convenience (like Jonny’s natural vegan condoms), however it’s always worth checking which lubricant that particular brand has used. Potential allergies, any harsh chemicals and the kind of sex you’re planning on having (vaginal, oral or anal) should be taken into consideration.
Personal lubricants are a super fun, totally handy and sometimes completely necessary product to have when getting down with a lover. However, like condoms, there is not a one-size-fits-all lube. Consider the base of the lubricant you're going to use, as well as the activity you're going to use it for, and steer clear of any nasty ingredients that are going to make your experience more painful than pleasurable.