The Condom Depot Guide to Personal Lubricants
Lubrication is extremely important, not only for pleasure and comfort, but because lube provides a valuable service when used in conjunction with a condom.Since the #1 cause of condom breakage is a lack of proper lubrication, using lube can help you and your partner achieve a higher level of satisfaction in a safer way. Every lube we offer is safe for use with condoms, but with such a variety of choices in the lubrication market, choosing which lube is right for you can be a bit of a challenge. Read on to learn more about the different types of lubricants and you can go from a lube novice to a lube expert in no time. Remember, there truly is a lube that's right for every orifice and for every occasion!
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Types of Personal Lubricants:
Water-based lubes are the most common used and sought after lubes due to their high level of versatility. Water-based lubes are completely safe for use with both condoms and silicone toys.
Many of the condoms that come pre-lubed use water-based lubricants. In fact, since the early 1900s, water-based lubes have been at the forefront of personal lubrication. At the forefront of these are Lifestyles and K-Y, popular among those who shop for their personal lubricants at pharmacies.
The downfall to water-based lubes is that they get absorbed more quickly than silicone or other lubes. This absorption can leave them feeling really tacky and sticky on your fingertips or genitals, and you may go through a bottle of water-based lube much quicker.
Water-based lubes can tend to get tacky or sticky feeling over time, but they are easily washed off of the body and other materials and are generally non-staining. Based on rave reviews from our staff and our satisfied customers, our most popular water-based lube currently is Wet Original Personal Lubricant.
Silicone-based lubes are the most waterproof lubricants available on the market today. They can easily be used in the shower, in the pool or in the bathtub for a sexy underwater romp either by yourself or with a partner. Silicone lubes are particularly long lasting and concentrated, so usually only a small amount applied once, is necessary for that wet n wild effect.
Therefore, purchasing a 10oz container of a silicone-based lube is likely to last for a much longer time than a 10oz container of water-based lube. Our staff and customers agree that Pjur Orginal BodyGlide is the best silicone-based lube available today.
A lot of folks may balk at the idea of putting silicone into their bodies-- water-based lube sounds so much more organic and natural, doesn't it? But the fact is, silicone is perfectly safe and often has even fewer crazy chemicals than water-based lubes. Unlike water-based lubes, silicone also isn't absorbed by your sensitive mucus membranes, so while it may take less time to feel clean, it isn't going into your body.
Silicone-based lubes are especially recommended for anal sex because they won't get absorbed by the anus. Our favorite? WET Uranus Silicone-Based. Many anal lubes use a thicker silicone-based lube-- the thickness allows the lube to stay in place a little better.
Silicone Lubricants Should NOT be Used with Silicone Toys:
Now here is the most crucial information about silicone-based lubes. It is not recommended for you to use a silicone-based lube with silicone toys (usually the squishier or more skin-like toys). Different grades of silicone break each other down and can eat away at the surface of your toy (kind of like a silicone cannibal). Since all types of silicone are made from different grades of this material, predicting the damage is impossible. If you are not sure if your toy is made from silicone, check the packaging or ask one of our experts before using a silicone-based lube and permanently damaging your favorite toy.
Anal lubes are specially formulated to be to thicker and more long lasting than vaginal or oral lubes. Many also contain an added ingredient which provides a slight numbing sensation, since anal play or anal sex can be somewhat painful for some people. This key ingredient is called Benzocaine. It is the same substance which is found in climax control condoms, which makes sense since these types of condoms also serve the purpose of being desensitizing. Benzocaine will also numb the mouth (or any other orifice) so apply it only to the area you wish to numb.
For the maximum amount of Benzocaine, try Anal Ese. Anal lubes are packaged in different ways leaving it up to you to decide if you'd rather spray it on, use a plunger for precise insertion or get it where it's going from a convenient pump out container.
Benzocaine, or Climax-Control, lubes can be a great resource for those guys who have a problem blasting off a little too early. Benzocaine is also found in pain medication and creams, and can cause a slight numbing that’ll help you last longer. One of the best ways to do this is to put it on the inside of a condom so that the numbing doesn’t effect your partner.
Many lubes with benzocaine will say that they are recommended for anal sex. We, however, don’t think that’s such a great idea. Anal sex can be very painful the first few times you attempt it, but that pain is good. It tells you that something is wrong. If you numbed that pain, you could be putting yourself at serious risk by not noticing if there are potentially dangerous tears or other problems.
If you are looking for a tastier and sweeter smelling way to enjoy sexual acts, flavored lubes are the way to go. Appealing to these senses can enhance sexual pleasure and is especially nice for those who associate food with pleasure. Flavored lubes are great when used in conjunction with a flavored condom during oral sex.
Please note that some flavored lubes do contain sugar as an ingredient, which may lead to a yeast infection if used vaginally. Sugar promotes yeast growth and some women are more susceptible to this outcome than others. Fortunately, the Wet brand has come up with a sugar-free formula, called Wet Fun Flavors Personal Lubricant, which effectively prevents this unpleasant problem from occurring.
All Natural Lubricants
For those who prefer a more natural approach to lubrication, there are several all natural lubricants on the market. Instead of chemicals, they contain natural ingredients such as Vitamin E, carageenan and aloe which allows them to be ultra moisturizing and long lasting, without being made from man made chemicals.
For people who have trouble with allergic reactions from other types of lube in the past, this is the natural choice for your next sexual adventure. All natural lubes are available in a spray or liquid form and in flavors as well. Blossom Organics Lubricant is a great glycerine and paraben-free lubricant recently added to our store.
Customers and staff members agree that all natural lubes generally have a less artificial scent than other lubes and that they also leave the skin feeling silkier and smoother than other types of lube after repeated use.
Aloe is becoming a popular lube base in the world of organics. Why not? It has a wonderful cooling effect, it doesn't typically cause allergic reactions, and it's easy to get ahold of. If you're worried about parabens, glycerin, and other types of non-organic ick in your lubes, aloe-based lubes are a wonderful option.
It may be hard to find an aloe that's certified safe and organic-- the FDA has notably been sticklers when it comes to using aloe for personal lubrication, although Aloe Cadabra became the first company officially, organically certified.
Warming & Cooling Lubricants
Warming lubes have some sort of warming chemical-- usually capsaicin, an ingredient found in peppers. While that may sound uncomfortable, most of the time the amount is completely benign. It isn’t supposed to hurt you, although studies have found that it’s usually women who find the capsaicin more uncomfortable than men. Once again, if you're especially sensitive, this is a huge no-no.
Tingling or, ‘cooling,’ lubes usually have some sort of mint or menthol to give that cold sensation. We’ve all heard the rumor that if you give a guy a blowjob with an Altoid in your mouth, it feels tingly, right? Well, that’s basically the same concept. Again, some women may find this more uncomfortable than men, so stay away if you have sensitive skin. Or try it out. I'm not your mom.
There it is. The dirtiest word in the lube world. Parabens are a preservative-- they keep your lube from going bad, mostly by keeping out bacteria. Which sounds pretty good. So why is everyone so against them?
The problem is that we don't completely know the damage that parabens can do. Inside the female body, it's possible for them to mimic estrogen, which can eventually lead to breast cancer if over-exposed. They can also lead to allergic reaction and a weakening of the endocrine system-- that is, the system that controls your hormones. There currently is not evidence that this is an immediate and for-sure thing that will happen if you're exposed to parabens. So don't freak out if you accidentally use a condom that has a paraben-containing lube in it. Right now, research involving lasting links to harmful damage just isn't out there.
The USA, EU, and Canadian governments all consider parabens to be safe, although the EU does have some restrictions.
Most lubricant companies have a paraben-free alternative, but silicone lubes usually don't have any at all. You can check by looking at the ingredients. They won't typically say, 'parabens,' but rather some type of paraben. So, if you see anything that's '_____-paraben,' opt for something a little more natural-- or more silicone.
We have written quite a bit about our distaste for spermicidal lubes. Spermicide, whether it’s on a condom or in a lube, contains nonoxynol-9, which has been found to be an irritant to the vaginal or anal cell walls. Not only does this make using it extremely uncomfortable, it can also open microfissures that make passing STDs, in particular HIV, even easier. Most condoms that carry spermicide don’t carry enough to be an effective form of birth control all by themselves.
If you are going to use spermicidal lube as your only form of birth control (and you should really only do this if there is no other option), DO NOT use it with a partner whose HIV status you don’t know.
Lubricants & Condoms
For the structural integrity of your condom, it is vital for you to stay away from using products which may seem like lubes, but are not at all designed for such a purpose. These products include baby oil, petroleum jellies and massage oils.
Most brand name lubricants will specify on in their product description or on their packaging as to whether or not they are safe for use in conjunction with latex condoms. Every lube we sell on this site is safe for use with condoms.