An infection is when foreign microbes enter the body and begin to spread. When and if those microbes begin to inhibit normal body functions, the infection has become a disease. Sexually transmitted infections and diseases are those which are passed between people through sexual intercourse or related activites. Whether or not an infection progresses to a disease can depend on an individual’s biology, so even if you exhibit no outward symptoms of infection, you should take action to protect you and your partner during sexual activities!
Who Uses Lube?
Everyone! At Sex Out Loud we suggest that everyone use lubrication because the wetter the sex is, the better the sex is. Lube is especially important for anal adventures because the anus/rectum is not self-lubricating like the vagina. When you think you have enough lube, just add a little lot more. Other than rectal roaming, lube can be used to get things slipping and sliding in the vagina even though it lubricates itself naturally—because what feels better, a back rub, or a back rub with massage oil? And speaking of massages, lubrication can also be used as an aid in foreplay, enhancing sensual massage. Lube also reduces friction and will help prevent condoms from breaking.
What Kinds of Lube Are There?
There are three main types of lubrication: water-based, silicone-based, and oil-based. Deciding which lube is the best is really a matter of personal preference and figuring out what you want to get out of your slippery sexual experience.
Water-based lubrication is the most basic and generally the least expensive variety of lubrication. It is made by many different brands, so it is easy to find and it is a good place to start if you are just beginning your experimentation with lube. Simply add some lube to whatever you want and slip and slide away, but keep the lube bottle handy because water-based lubrication often requires reapplication. Water-based lubrication can be cleaned relatively easily with plain water, no soap required, and it also won’t stain sheets or clothing if a spill should occur.
One thing to keep in mind if you decide to use water-based lube is that many varieties—such as K-Y, Wet, and Astroglide—contain glycerin (sugar) and if you or whoever is going to be using the lube is prone to yeast infections, it will be worth your time to find a brand or type that is glycerin-free. Some water-based lubrications that do not have glycerin as an ingredient are Liquid Silk and Play. Other lubes that are water-based can be flavored. Flavored lube is for ORAL use only. There is a great deal more sugar in flavored lubrications, so it is in your best interest to keep them involved in oral situations only.
is really great if you are looking for a lubricant that is going to last for a long time. This is an “apply it and it’s there until you wash it off” sort of lube. Silicone-based lube is great for anal sex because it is long lasting and you won’t risk a water-based lubricant drying up. Silicone lube is not for use with silicone toys because the enzymes that keep the silicone a liquid at room temperature will bind to the silicone toy and literally melt it. Silicone-based lubrication is also not the lube to use when you have your favorite sheets on your bed because this lube will stain if it gets onto fabric. But don’t let that deter you because silicone is a great lube to try, just lay a towel down and get to it!
is very long lasting. It will not come off unless it is washed off so if you are in need of a lube that is in it for the long haul then this could be for you. Oil-based lubrication is not for use with latex condoms; it degrades them and can literally erode a hole through them. The only condoms that are safe for use with oil-based lubricants are those made of polyurethane, but in general it is best to use other types of lubrication with condoms and other barriers. Oil-based lubes tend to be recommended more for use during masturbation do to an added risk of some residue remaining in the vagina or rectum, which can lead to irritation or even a bacterial infection. However, these infections and irritations are not of pandemic proportions. Basically, don’t use oil-based lube every day and you should be fine.
Barrier methods are the most reliable way to prevent STI transmission between sexual partners, and can also be used as a form of contraception. Select a method below to learn more about it: