Lube Listicle (and other things of the sort)
April 7, 2022
Sex is something we often see in movies, T.V. shows and adult websites. For many, this is their first introduction to the act of sex and one of the points of reference they use when they become sexually active. What these forms of media don’t show you is the messy technicalities of sex.
Sexual education doesn’t cover a lot of the questions we have when we begin to explore ourselves in the sexual space, and for a long time women were shamed and shunned for discussing and expressing their sexuality. Mind you, I am not a professional so please, please, please talk to a professional if you have further questions, and take what I say here with a grain of salt.
Information about sex is constantly changing. Many of these points are meant for women and people with vaginas, but they apply to more than these groups of people. If you’ve ever had a question about something sex-related, take a look. Maybe some of your questions will be answered here.
1.Condoms are useful outside of penetrative intercourse with a partner!
You can also make a dental dam for oral sex using a condom. Actual dental dams would always be preferable, but sometimes they may be unavailable or inconvenient. Just snip the tip and the bottom of the condom. Next, carefully cut down the sides of the condom. Then, open it up, and you have a quick dental dam to engage in some safe(er) oral sex. They can also be helpful when engaging in self-play. When using “body-safe” non-porous adult toys condoms aren’t necessary, but they can make cleaning your toys after the fact quick and easy. See more: How to Use a Dental Dam | CDC
2. Take note of what is in your lubricant!
It’s important to know what kind of lubricant you have and what is in it. For example, using an oil-based lube can break latex condoms and using silicone toys with certain types of silicone lube may cause your toy to break down over time. Cleaning silicone off of silicone can be a pain too. There is also much debate about what ingredients in lube are bad for your body. It is good to do your research and take it with a grain of salt. For example, it has been said any lubes with glucose or glycerin may cause yeast infections. Many of the leading lube brands have these ingredients, so make sure you take a peek at the list of ingredients in a product before you buy. Yeast infections aren’t guaranteed when using lube with glycerin or glucose, but if you are prone to them, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
3. Try to buy sex toys from reputable retailers and manufactures that *ideally* can tell you what the product is made out of!
Sex toy manufacturers may mislabel their products sometimes and you should know what is going in, on and around your body. Many toys are made with chemicals that are not safe for the human body. The FDA does not regulate sex toys so be watchful of chemicals and porous materials! Do some research before you go shopping!
4.Do NOT internally clean your vagina!
For decades there have been products marketed to women to help with vaginal cleanliness. Here’s the kicker, vaginas are self-cleaning. Douching is not necessary and can throw off your PH balance, effectively making whatever “issue” you were trying to address worse. Vaginas aren’t meant to taste or smell like roses and vanilla. To properly clean, use warm water and unscented soap around the vulva and let your vagina do what it was made for. See more: Douching | Office on Women’s Health.
As a bonus fact, the vagina and vulva are different body parts. The term vagina is often used when talking about the vulva.
5. As a rule of thumb, do not used flavored lubricant for penetrative sex (unless stated otherwise on the product and even then make sure to check the ingredients list)!
Most flavored lubricants have some sort of sugar compound in them and should not be introduced into the vaginal environment. Flavored lubricant is mostly intended for use on the vulva.
6. Many may not know, but there are different lubes for different purposes!
For example, silicone lube is best for extended sessions, sexual activities involving water and anal as it doesn’t dry out as quickly and is thicker/slicker than most water-based lubes. Needing extra lube is fine and normal during sex, so there is no need to feel ashamed about it! Lubricant is necessary to prevent friction tears and subsequent infections. It also makes the act of sex more enjoyable. In addition, don’t use petroleum jelly as it can lead to infections. If you can’t ingest it orally, it probably isn’t great for your genitals.
7. Know yourself so your partner can know you!
Exploring yourself and your body is a good way to know what it does for you. There are many different ways and variations that people with vaginas can orgasm and it is different for everyone. You should know yourself before anyone else does. Take some time to get to know yourself intimately and eventually you can share what you’ve learned with your partner so they can better understand you and your body! For example, don’t rely on the G-spot. It’s a myth. There is no universal button in your vagina for orgasms. It works for some and not for others.
8. Clean your sex toys and do not share!
The hygiene of your toys is important and can help them last for longer than if you weren’t taking care of them. Cleaning your toys helps prevent bad bacteria that might be on them from being introduced into your vagina. If you have a toy that you used with your previous partner, get a new toy to use with your current partner. Even if you keep it relatively clean you still shouldn’t cross-contaminate, especially if you don’t use condoms with your toys.
9. Vaginal discharge is normal and indicative of a healthy vaginal environment!
Also, discharge is acidic so having bleached underwear is completely normal, so don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. If you feel your smell or discharge is different from normal, talk to your doctor. It could be an infection, which is also normal. The vagina is a very sensitive organ and any introduction of outside bacteria can trigger an infection. See more: Vaginal discharge | healthdirect
10. And finally, pee after sex (and before if you can manage)!!!!
Peeing after sex helps to remove bacteria from the urethra before it gets to the bladder and helps prevent UTI’s. See more: Urinary Tract Infection | Antibiotic Use | CDC
Staff Photographer Dominique Martinez-Powell can be reached at [email protected]. To stay up to date with all your southern Illinois news, follow the Daily Egyptian on Facebook and Twitter.