There frequently seems to be a myth that lubricants are only for people with vaginas who struggle with vaginal dryness. That is absolutely not the case. There is a lube for everyone and every type of sex. Sex researcher Debby Herbenick found in a research study that the use of lubrication was associated with more pleasurable and satisfying sex and masturbation. Not only can lubricants make sex more enjoyable, but they can also make sex safer! Yes, you heard that right. When having sex with a condom, using a lubricant makes it less likely for the condom to rip or tear, therefore decreasing your risk of pregnancy and STI transmission. Lube can also reduce the chance of tears in your skin, which again decreases your risk of STI transmission. Keep reading for some more things to consider as you start to incorporate lube into your sex life.
The History of Lube
Lube is not a new concept, in fact, it has been around for thousands of years. Around 350 BCE, people were using olive oil to help things glide more easily during vaginal and anal sex. Just to be clear, DIY lubricants are no longer recommended, particularly for penetrative sex. K-Y Jelly became the first product to be marketed and sold as a personal lubricant in 1917, however, it was only available by prescription from your doctor until the 1980s. In the 80s, lube continued to take off to where it is today, commonplace and easily purchased at most grocery stores and pharmacies.
Different types of lubes and what to consider when you buy:
Water-based lube: This is a versatile option, which can be used solo, with a partner, with a condom, or with sex toys. Water-based lubes are compatible with every sex toy material, including silicone, which is not the case for all other lubes.
Silicone Lube: This is typically considered one of the most long-lasting lubricants, therefore, it is typically recommended for penetrative sex whether that is vaginal or anal. Because silicone lubes are more slippery and don’t dry out as quickly, silicone lube can also be used for water play. They are compatible with condoms, but not with silicone toys, so beware of that before using.
Oil-based Lube: This is a great option when you do not plan on having penetrative sex. Oil-based lubes are not recommended for internal use (vaginally or anally) but are a great steamy addition to male solo sex or an erotic massage.
Specialty Lubes: There are also a wide variety of fun lubricants to help add some spice to your sex life. This can include flavored lubes, warming and tingling lubes, and THC-infused lubes. It might be important to do more research to ensure that these lubes are right for you. Some things to remember are that flavored lubes are best for adding a delicious taste to your next oral sex adventure but are not as great for penetrative sex. Pleasure-enhancing lubricants can be a fun way to increase sensations, but it is important to test the lubricant on your wrist or arm before your genitals to make sure that you don’t have an allergic reaction. Similarly, THC-infused lubricants have a sensitizing effect but are only available in some states and for people over the age of 21.
Lube is amazing, why isn’t everyone using it?
I hope I have been able to convey that lube can be an incredible tool for increasing sexual pleasure and satisfaction. So then why was it that in 2020 nearly 250 million Americans said that they do not use lube? It appears that there can still be some embarrassment about using lube during sex. Ms. Brown, a sex coach and self-described “lube enthusiast” stated that “We live in a society where a self-lubricating vulva and vagina is celebrated and one that does not is shamed.” I understand where that fear of lubricants is coming from, but this is not just a tool for dealing with sexual dysfunction, it is a tool for everyone to increase pleasure!
Find the Best Lube for You
I am predicting that this embarrassment is about to change because lube is having a moment. Gone are the days when your lube comes in a dingy plastic tube that you want to hide away and causes a mess every time you use it. Now lube is coming in chic packaging that makes it resemble a high-end beauty product. Brands like Maude, Bloomi, Foria, and Dame, are all going to great lengths to make sure that their bottles are so aesthetic that you want to display them proudly on your nightstand. Want to join the lubricant movement? Figure out what type of lube is best for you, find a bottle that pleases your eyes, and show off that bottle where people can see it. It can be a great conversation starter and it could drastically improve your sexual pleasure.
Want to Talk With an Expert? Begin Online Sex Therapy in Minnesota.
It's not just lube that is having a moment. Sex therapy is becoming more popular and normalized, too! If you've been wondering about topics of a more intimate nature and want support, an expert sex and relationship therapist in our Plymouth, MN therapy practice can help. Let us help you take those first steps to embracing your sex life more fully. In fact, we can help you wherever you are in the state via online sex and relationship therapy in Minnesota!
Other Sexual Wellness and Sex Therapy Services in Minnesota
In addition to sex therapy, our LGBT & polyamory friendly sex and relationship therapists provide a wide range of mental health services at our Plymouth, MN counseling office. Other services include therapy around sex and substances, couples therapy & marriage counseling, EFT, evidence-based couples therapy, EMDR & sexual trauma therapy, as well as, teen therapy. We also provide a variety of helpful tips on our mental health blog. Please feel free to reach out with questions, or if you would like to schedule an appointment to begin working with a skilled sex therapist! Your sex life can be amazing. Sex therapy can be a part of that process for you.
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