What is lube?
Lube is a quicker way to say intimate or personal lubricant. There are various types of lube you can buy, but they all serve the same purpose – enhance lubrication and make sex more pleasurable. Most intimate lubricants are safe to use with condoms and sex toys, but you can also use them even if you’re not using condoms. Lube is particularly indicated to use if you have vaginal dryness or for anal sex, but as a general rule, the more lubrication the more pleasurable sex will be.
What is the difference between the various types of lube?
There are various types of intimate lubricants out there, and each serves a specific purpose. Let’s check them out.
Dubbed “the versatile type” water-based lube is the most popular. You can use it with all kinds of sex toys, all condoms, and for all imaginable sexual activities. Water-based lube can be natural, meaning that it doesn’t have any particular taste or scent, but you can also choose from an array of flavoured options. Flavoured lubricant can enhance oral sex, but all options you can find here at Condoms.uk are also suitable to use for vaginal and anal intercourse.
Water-based lube pros:
- Water-based lube has a pleasant, smooth feel. It isn’t oily and doesn’t feel sticky.
- It can be used with all types of condoms and sex toys.
- Water-based lube can prevent condom breakage, especially when you’re having rough sex or anal sex.
- It is very easy to wipe clean.
- Water-based lube doesn’t stain fabrics and surfaces.
- It is available in pH-neutral versions suitable for people with sensitive skin.
Water-based lube cons:
- It dries faster than silicone or hybrid lube.
- You may have to apply more product to achieve the desired slickness.
Silicone-based lube is not as popular as the water-based variety, but it still holds a high position in the charts. Like water-based lube, silicone lube can be used with all condoms, but it might be incompatible with silicone sex toys. This type of lube lasts longer than the water-based and can also be used under the shower, since it’s not easy to wash it away.
Silicone-based lube pros:
- It lasts longer than water-based lube.
- A small quantity goes a long way. The product doesn’t dry out fast and requires fewer applications.
- It is a better choice for women with vaginal dryness.
- Can be used in the tub or under the shower.
- It is compatible with all types of condoms. Most condoms on the market are pre-lubricated with silicone lube.
Silicone-based lube cons:
- Silicone-based lube is harder to wash out once you’re done.
- It could stain fabrics and surfaces.
- The silicone component is not environmentally friendly.
- This type of lube is not compatible to use with silicone sex toys and accessories.
This type of lube doubles as massage oil and can make sexy time incredibly sensual. It is ideal for couples in a committed relationship or for solo play, since it can damage latex and polyisoprene condoms. If you want to use this type of lube with condoms, choose a polyurethane or synthetic resin condom.
Oil-based lube pros:
- It is an excellent choice for sensual massages and foreplay.
- A few drops go a very long way. One application is usually enough to last from beginning to the end.
Oil-based lube cons:
- This type of lube can damage the structure of latex and polyisoprene condoms, causing them to break. If you use this type of condoms, you should remove all oil residues from your hands and genital areas before using the condom. However, this could kill the mood.
- Oil-based lube increases the risk of vaginal and urinary tract infections, including yeast infections and bacterial vaginosis.
- The product stains fabrics and surfaces and is difficult to wipe clean when you’re finished.
- It could cause rashes and irritation in people with sensitive skin.
Unlike lube, which is typically used during sex, vaginal moisturisers are products designed to combat vaginal dryness. Most moisturisers have a water-based formula, a neutral pH, and are often enriched with natural extracts, such as aloe vera. Moisturisers can be used at any time, during sexual activity but also throughout the day to prevent irritation and discomfort and to improve tissue quality.
Like their name suggests, massage gels are not designed for the specific purpose of lubrication. They are an excellent choice if you want to include a seductive massage into your routine and can lubricate you down there, but most massage gels are not safe to use with condoms – even if they’re water-based. If you use condoms for contraception, remember to always read the lube label before using it with a condom. Never use a lube or massage gel with condoms if the product isn’t labelled as safe, because it could damage the latex structure and cause the condom to break.
Can I use lube with sex toys?
You can use lube with sex toys, but you should pay attention to the type of lube you’re using if the toy is made of silicone.
Silicone toys are usually incompatible with silicone lubes because the two types of silicone may react and damage the toy. In most cases, the silicone on the toy swells or starts to peel off. The reaction is usually harmless for you, but it could as well cause inflammation if the toy starts to degrade inside your body.
Not all silicone toys will be damaged by silicone lube, so if you really want to try (perhaps for using the toy underwater), do a patch test before applying lube on the main surface.
You can do the patch test on a portion that doesn’t normally come in contact with your private bit, such as the handle of the toy. Apply a small quantity of silicone-based lube and watch out for a reaction. Any reaction should happen quickly, but it is recommended to leave the toy for at least a few hours. Inspect and see if there is any damage, such as a difference in structure, the silicone peeling off the patch, or an unusual smell.
If you notice any of the above, you should stick to using water-based lube with the toy.
What is the best lube for people with sensitive skin?
Whilst most lubes are hypoallergenic and suitable for everyone, people with sensitive skin may still have reactions if the lube contains parabens (a common preservative) or fragrances. If you have sensitive skin and don’t know which lube to buy, here are some of the safest options:
- Durex Naturals Pure Intimate Gel: This personal lube has an all-natural formula and is designed to be extra-gentle on the skin. It doesn’t contain any pesky chemicals or fragrances and has a neutral, fresh scent. The product has a water-based formula and is suitable to use with condoms and all types of sex toys. On the skin, it feels silky and slick, but it doesn’t leave behind any greasy residues. This intimate gel is very easy to wipe clean and it doesn’t stain fabrics and surfaces. Besides the moisturising effect, Durex Naturals Pure also has a rejuvenating effect, helping ladies maintain the strength and elasticity of the vaginal tissue.
- Mates Aqua Aloe Sensitive: Another lube with a natural formulation, Mates Aqua Aloe Sensitive is an excellent choice for combating the symptoms of vaginal dryness. This lube contains no pesky chemicals or fragrances and, like Durex Naturals, it is dermatologically tested. The product is compatible with all condoms and sex toys.
- Pasante Gentle Light Lube: Pasante is one of the few types of lube for sensitive skin that doesn’t brag with an all-natural formula. However, the product is very delicate on the skin and is designed to maintain the delicate vaginal balance. It has a neutral pH and contains no pesky chemicals, preservatives, or fragrances.
- SKYN Aqua Feel: SKYN is the most popular brand of latex free condoms, and its range of intimate lube also cater to the needs of people with sensitive skin or allergies. The Aqua Feel lube has a very delicate formula enriched with aloe vera. The product doesn’t contain preservatives, harsh chemicals, or fragrances, and it can combat vaginal dryness. This lube feels silky smooth on the skin and a few drops go a long way, but it is very easy to wipe clean and doesn’t leave stains.
What is the best lube for anal sex?
Silicone lube is a popular choice for people who engage in anal sex, but is it the best choice? One of the best option comes from Boys Own, and the product is water-based.
Boys Own Clear and Boys Own Silk are two types of lubricants developed specifically for anal sex. The only difference between the two is the colour – the Silk version is white, whilst Clear is transparent. This moisturising product has a very smooth formula and is thicker than regular water-based lube, but it doesn’t feel greasy and it doesn’t stain fabrics.
Both types of Boys Own lubes are enriched with aloe vera and are paraben-free. The lube doesn’t contain fragrances either, but it contains Carrageenan extract, a natural additive that is beneficial against HPV. This ingredient makes it safer to use for unprotected anal sex.
Boys Own is a brand owned by LTC Healthcare, the same brand behind the popular EXS condoms and lubes.
What is flavoured lube?
Flavoured lube is personal lubricant that smells and tastes in a certain way. For instance, cherry lube smells and tastes like cherry, strawberry lube smells and tastes like strawberry, and so on. At Condoms.uk, you can find flavoured lube that tastes like:
Is flavoured lube safe for sex?
Flavoured lube was originally designed to enhance oral sex. All flavoured lubes are edible – this doesn’t mean that you should eat it, but the lube is safe to ingest in small quantities during oral sex. This type of lube can be applied directly on the penis, vulva, or anus, but it can also be used with condoms or dental dams.
In fact, most people prefer to use flavoured lube to cover the smell and taste of latex during safe oral sex. In the case of cunnilingus, a few drops of flavoured lube applied between the dam and the vulva can help you prevent flipping off the sheet accidentally in the heat of the moment – if you feel the sweet taste of the lube, the dam has flipped.
Flavoured lube has not been used for vaginal or anal sex historically because brands used sugar or glycerine to sweeten the products. Both sugars and glycerine can alter the delicate vaginal balance and should never be introduced inside the vagina. They can cause yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis, or urinary tract infections.
However, most brands nowadays only use natural extracts to flavour up their lubes. In other words, you can use them for vaginal or anal sex without worries.
An easy way to tell if the flavoured lube you like is safe for vaginal and anal sex is reading the label. If there is no sugar or glycerine in the list of ingredients, you’re good to go.
Is lube safe to use with condoms?
Silicone, water-based, and hybrid lube (a blend of silicone and water) are safe to use with all types of condoms. Oil-based lubes are only safe to use with polyurethane, synthetic resin, or lambskin condoms. When in doubt, read the product label or the instructions on your condom packet.
Is massage gel safe to use with condoms?
No. Massage gels should never be used with condoms regardless of their formula. You can, however, use water-based or silicone-based lube instead of a massage gel for a sensual massage, and in this case you don’t have to bother clearing up the product before using a condom.
Where can I buy lube?
You can buy lube right here at Condoms.uk. We stock a wide range of water, silicone, and hybrid lubricants, including anal lube and lube for people with sensitive skin. Our range also includes water-based massage gels in addition to condoms and accessories. When buying from us, you’re buying genuine products from trusted brands and benefit from free discreet delivery on all orders of £25 or more.