Sex is awesome, but it’s not always pure effortless magic. It takes homework, tools, communication, and a lil' bit of elbow grease. If you’ve ever had even a pinprick of pain during or after sex, or felt like you had to “get over the hump” of penetration, lube can be life changing.
From reducing friction during vaginal or anal penetration, to preventing microtears (which not only burns like hell, but can increase the risk of STI transmission), lube is our multipurpose go-to for our multifaceted (sex) lives.
It may seem trivial to grab a bottle of lube when you want it, but it could be the gateway to starting more conversations with your partner/s about your body and desires. Require lube to get down? Pick some up and keep it close. Need a vibrator to finish? Who doesn’t lmao. Need to disclose information to a partner before getting naked? They’re lucky to hear it! Honest communication is the ultimate turn on. Close the pleasure gap. Set boundaries in the bedroom. Advocate for your pleasure! Lube is a tool that can help you open the floodgates (both literally and figuratively) to a more satisfaction in your sex life and relationships — with yourself and partner/s.
But with all the options out there, it can be confusing to find and apply the right one. So without further ado, we present The Ultimate Guide to Lube. From purchasing to storing to using personal lubricants, we’ve got you covered. Oh and once you're...primed for the main event, head over to The Official Momotaro Apotheca Sex Tips™.
What type of lube should I use?
Oh boy, what a loaded question. There are literally thousands of lube options, each one claiming to be better than the next. While it’s ultimately up to you, there are three main types of lubricant that all have their pros and cons, depending on when (and where) you use them.
Like with anything you put in or on your body, be sure to read the ingredient labels. Avoid lubes with artificial fragrance and flavoring as the chemicals can cause irritation. And while you don’t have to go the 100% Natural Organic Vegan Kosher route, you should always avoid lubes containing the following:
- propylene glycol
- chlorhexidine gluconate
These chemical ingredients are more likely to lead to inflammation, irritation, or infection as they disrupt your skin's natural microbiome, and can alter your vaginal pH, especially if you have sensitive skin.
There are three main types of personal lubricants you have to choose from, depending on what type of activities you'll be getting into.
Silicone lubes are water resistant and long lasting, so your best option if you like shower sex and don’t usually use silicone-based toys — silicone based lubes are safe to use with latex condoms, but should not be used with silicone devices, as it can degrade them over time, causing tears on the surface that can harbor bacteria even after washing.
Water based lubricants are best for those just dipping their toes into the world of lubes as they’re safe to use with condoms and silicone toys. Because they’re not water-resistant, a water based lube makes them a good option for quick cleanups (and are less likely to stain your sheets), but not your first choice if you’re into shower sex. Water based lubes aren’t as long lasting as silicone or oil based lubricants, so may require reapplication, especially during anal.
Oil-based lubes, while long lasting, should never be used with latex condoms, since they degrade the material, resulting in holes. Oils are also notorious also stain sheets, so if you’re concerned about your Egyptian Cotton, we recommend laying down a trusty towel so you can put all that elbow grease when you’re between the sheets, rather than when you’re cleaning them. We recommend saving the oils for sensual body massage, and only using an oil-based lube with long-term monogamous partners, or during solo sessions.
Where can I get lube?
Now that you’ve decided what type/s of lube you want, comes procuring the personal item. Don’t feel awkward about it. People have sex. People want to have pleasurable sex. What’s embarrassing about that? Luckily, you have several options.
Your local pharmacy or drugstore. Pick up some Cheetos while you’re there. You might need the extra energy *wink wink* Just be sure to read the ingredients, since some of the cheaper options will contain fillers or added fragrance that could irritate your skin.
Online. Most sex shops offer discrete delivery, so get your condoms, toys, and lubes all in one pleasure package! Some of our favorite stockists include Earth & Salt (Burlington, VT), Early to Bed (Chicago, IL) and, if you’re in the UK or Australia, Self & More. (Psst you’ll also find they carry Momotaro Apotheca for pre and post pleasure care.)
Your gynecologist. You can be rest assured that these lubes are safe for your vagina. It’s also a great excuse to get tested (again) and ask your OB/GYN all your burning questions and vagina approved goodies.
Where should I store lube?
Now that we’ve established that lube rocks and we should definitely use it, it can be difficult to bust it out in the bedroom. Reaching for a personal lubricant while you’re in the middle of making out can be awkward or clunky. Sometimes you leave it in your tote bag downstairs, or can’t remember where you threw it after your last roll in the hay. When it comes to lube it’s all about location, location, location, so we’ve got a few suggestions for lube storage so when it comes to reaching for the slippery stuff, it won’t interrupt ~the flow~
In your nightstand drawer. Grabbable? Discreet? Double check.
On your nightstand. A great conversation starter! Especially if it’s beautifully bottled.
Under your pillow. “Oh how did this get here? Well…shall we?” (Just be sure it’s screwed on tight so it doesn't’ leak out before you get your screw on.)
In a special bag or box with your other toys. Might as well grab a butt plug while you’re there.
In your purse or backpack for away games. Unprepared? You? Never. Oh and don’t forget your own protection, phone charger, and a reliable route to get home.
Where (and how) to use lube
This might seem...obvious, but it’s important to remember that lube isn’t just a solution to a “problem” — it’s for increasing pleasure to make your sexual encounters more enjoyable and safe! Before drizzling on the lube, we recommend patch testing on your wrist or forearm (this goes for all new body and skin care products).
Start with a little bit of lube and add more if you’re still feeling friction, or on a marathon and it wears off. Lube should make things glide more smoothly, not slip’n’slide’n’sloppy. Using too much lube can cause the condom to break (remember, no oil-based lubes with latex!), or lead to someone getting injured if there’s too much gusto in the thrusto for penised partners or penetrative toys.
Use lube on yourself. Why not give your partner a show while applying it to yourself?
Use lube on your partner. Be a great host and offer them some of your finest. Or ask your partner to put it on you. Communication, people!
Use lube with toys. Internal, external, vibrators, sleeves, plugs. Whether you’re using them solo or partnered, all your toys can benefit from a little extra juice. Just be sure to check the ingredients in your lubes since some of the materials of your favorite toys may not be compatible
Use lube during anal. Unlike the vagina, the anal canal doesn’t produce it’s own lubrication, so you should pretty much always use lube during anal.
The bottom line
Lube isn’t just for bottoms. But seriously, while lube is mostly thought of for penetrative sex, or only as a “last resort” when you’re experiencing a “dry spell,” lube can (and should) be used by everyone, anytime, anywhere for safer, more enjoyable sex. Ultimately, it’s up to your own preferences, but, solo or partnered, lube is likely to leave a positive impact on your sex life.
Shop Our Favorite Lubes For Every Occassion
Oshihana Sex Oil
OIL BASED | $50
Made with Certified Organic botanicals with Oregon grown phytocannabinoids, including CBG, for use as a topical in your most intimate moments for pre, during, and post pleasure play.
Lark Love Personal Lubricant
WATER BASED | $27
An organic personal lubricant made with healing botanicals and hyaluronic acid. Love is water-based, condom compatible, PH'd, and has long-lasting slip.
Good Clean Love Almost Naked
MOST AFFORDABLE | $12
One of the most affordable certified organic lubes available. Water based, infused with aloe vera, pH balanced, and fertility-friendly.
SILICONE BASED | $28
If you want a silicone based lube, opt for this super-silky silicone and vitamin E formula. It's fragrance free, long-lasting, and compatible with natural rubber latex (and polysoprene) condoms. Also, it looks like a super chic perfume bottle.
Momotaro Apotheca and its materials are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. All material on Momotaro Apotheca is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have regarding a medical condition.