For my first post for the hints and tips page, I thought that I should probably start with the basics.
Funnily enough I had a conversation with a friend at work this week and he had no idea that there were so many different kinds of lube there were. So for all the people out there who are unaware of the different varieties of lube; this one's for you.
When you go to make your first purchase of lube online, suddenly you're overwhelmed by the choice and if you are/were anything like I used to be, you would go for something like Durex Feel as this is a common place lube that you can get in any supermarket or drugstore. But there is so many better lubes out there and you are spoilt for choice.
If you're considering a first sex toy purchase and you want to get some lube to go with it to enhance your playtime, you're best off selecting a water based lube as this is compatible with all sex toys as it won't damage them. Personally I happen to like Liquid Silk which can be bought from pretty much any online sex toy store, this particular lube has a much more luxury feel to it (almost like a moisturiser) and unlike some other water based lubes (like Durex Feel) I found that it lasts much longer as it doesn't dry up too quickly.
However if you are looking for a water based lube which is also flavoured for oral sex, then there are plenty of choices here too. Many retailers offer fruity flavours such as cherry and strawberry but top lube brand JO also have sweet flavours such as chocolate and vanilla which is great if you have a sweet tooth like me and sex toy retailer Simply Sutra have both of these flavours to buy.
Obviously if you're looking to start experimenting with anal sex and toys then I would strongly advise that you buy a specific lubricant for anal sex as these tend to be thicker in consistency and some lubes like Lovehoney's Discover has an infusion of Aloe Vera to help soothe and moisturise.
However if you want something a little more long lasting and are aware of what your favourite toys are made from, then you also have the choice of silicone based lubricants too. Unlike water based ones, silicone based lubes cannot be used with silicone toys as the lube can react with the surface of the toy and irreparable damage can occur and no one wants that. One of the plus points about silicone based lubes is that they are waterproof which is great if you are having sex or masturbating in the bath or shower. Out of the bathroom, I've found that silicone lubes also last a hell of a lot longer that their water based alternatives which is brilliant for long drawn out playtime with your favourite toys.
Both water based and silicone based lubes can have a cooling or warming effect if this floats your boat although personally I don't like them as I find them a bit irritating on the skin but I do have incredibly sensitive skin so if you don't, don't let me put you off from trying them.
A less common formulation is oil based lubes, these often contain botanical oils which can mean that you don't have to reapply very often and would also be handy in the shower, whilst offering nourishing and conditioning effects on your skin.
If you're super conscious about what you apply to your skin, there are options for organic lubes too. These tend to be glycerine and paraben free and also contain certified botanical ingredients and again these can come in either water, silicone or oil based formulations.
Both water based and silicone based lubes are latex compatible so you don't have to worry about them damaging condoms during sex, but do not and I mean do not use anything oil based as these will damage latex condoms rendering them unsafe to use.
So for all of you out there who have recently felt or currently feel a little perplexed by which lube to choose, I hope that this piece by me has helped provide a little insight into lubes for you.
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