Safe/Affordable Sex Toys

Safe/Affordable Sex Toys

This post is going to be about safe and affordable sex toys. If you don’t like this topic, stop reading! If you already know the basics about safe sex toys, but just want the link to the cheap ones, check out the first comment.

 

I’ve had a few conversations about safe sex toys in the last few weeks, and thought I’d drop some basics here. If you want more than just these basics, do some googling and read up on your own!

 

First of all, safe sex toy materials:

If you’re going to be using a sex toy around your vulva or anus, it’s important that the material be body safe. This is because both of those have mucus membranes, and using unsafe materials in those areas can mean that your body absorbs harmful bacteria or chemicals.

*Safe materials include*: silicone, ABS plastic, stainless steel, acrylic, and well lacquered wood. These materials are NON POROUS and BODY SAFE. NON POROUS means that they have no tiny holes in them, to pick up bacteria or oils, that will then be introduced/reintroduced into your system. They are not breeding ground for germs. BODY SAFE means that the materials themselves will not deteriorate and leave chemicals behind in very tender places.

*Unsafe materials include*: jelly rubber, latex, cyberskin, and PVC. Of these, jelly rubber is the WORST. When you open the package to one of these sex toys, it smells like a new shower curtain. Blech. They leech harmful chemicals, and will leave them behind in your vagina and anus. If you never have before, take a second and Google image search “jelly sex toys melt”. Isn’t that gross? That’s what that junk is made of. Latex toys are… OK, they’re fine, but they’re minimally porous, so they can trap bacteria and it’s difficult to clean them thoroughly enough (so fecal matter could end up in the vagina, which = BAD). Plus, latex allergies and sensitivities are becoming more common. Cyberskin is also fine, but can deteriorate overtime, is unusable with some lubes, and is also porous. But seriously, the jelly ones are BAD. If you have one, you MUST MUST MUST use a condom on the toy every time you use it, and store it somewhere there is some airflow, so the chemical fumes don’t cause it to break down.

Next, safe shapes.

Don’t use a sharp or broken or flawed toy around your poor sensitive genitals, y’all. I’m sorry your beloved toy broke, and it’s still *technically* useable, but it’s not. Now it can scratch you, or pick up bacteria, or whatever. Don’t use it anymore.

The correct toys for anal play ALL HAVE A FLANGED BASE. A flanged base is that shape that looks like a suction cup at the base. This is because the anus pulls things in, and also because it has no “end”, like the cervix is to the vagina. Google “toys found in peoples’ butts” and come back to me. If you’re putting a toy in your butt, it HAS to have a wider base, so it doesn’t get lost inside you and turned into some doctor’s party anecdote and a high ER bill.

Next, lubes:

The best, most compatible lubes are water based, and scent/flavor free. (note, there are some flavored lubes that are vulva-safe, but you’ll want to ask the employee at your local feminist sex toy store for advice there. It has to have aspartame, and NOT glycerin.) If there is sugar-product in your vulva, you are probably going to get a yeast infection. Take it from a lady who’s on a first-name basis with her gynecologist – those SUCK. So, glycerin free lubes are the way to go. The downside to water-based lubes is that they often feel sticky and thick, especially a few minutes after applying them. They don’t usually stay smooth and slippery (though you can perk them back up by dripping some water on the tacky areas, and rehydrating them). Water based lubes won’t damage any of your toys.

The most enjoyable-feeling lubes (to me, at least) are silicone lubes. They stay slippery forever, and don’t dry out. Downsides to silicone lubes: they may stain your sheets, and they will make you slip in the shower. They are NOT COMPATIBLE WITH SILICONE TOYS. The silicone will bind to the silicone and cause your lovely, non-porous silicone toy to erode. Boo. Silicone lube *IS* COMPATIBLE WITH LATEX CONDOMS. Some people say they aren’t – this is because OIL based lube can break down a latex condom, and SOME silicone lubes have oil in them. Just check the ingredients, and you should be fine.

Neither silicone nor water-based lubes will damage your vagina. The water based lube, because it’s basically mimicking the vagina’s natural lubrication. The silicone lube, because we’re carbon based life forms, and silicone doesn’t interact with our biology. Silicone lube is also usually tasteless, which is rad, just don’t, like… drink a bunch??? I don’t know exactly what would happen, but it seems like a bad thing to try.

Oil based lubes shouldn’t be used in the vagina, because they can clog the pores on your skin and mucous membranes. I’ve also heard that they can feel uncomfortable if they get in the urethra of a penis. Plus, like I said, they can break down a latex condom and make them more likely to break. So, oil = good for back massages, less good for genital massages. (Coconut oil devotees, don’t @ me)

“But Galia! Good silicone toys are really expensive! I want to put nice things in my vagina/butt, but I can’t afford to buy them!”

Y’all, that is so legit. You have a couple of options:

  1. Buy a cheaper toy and always use a condom on it.
  2. Put away a few bucks here and there and get a seriously good serviceable silicone toy for $40 – $90. Go to your local feminist sex toy store and ask the incredibly helpful employees for a hand, picking one out. (Philadelphibians, try Kink Shoppe on Market St or Sexploratorium on South St).
  3. Back the IndieGoGo campaign that I linked in the first comment. They are no bells or whistles, extremely high-quality, simple insertable sex toys for $19 each. They are ACTUALLY great quality, unlike most toys for $19. They don’t vibrate, light-up, glitter, spin, whatever. They just go into orifices. And they are good and cheap. (I am not affiliated with this company AT ALL, I just really want everyone to be able to have cheap, good quality sex toys that make them feel good and not bad) [EDIT: Please note – the IndieGoGo campaign is over, but the seller may sell these very cheap dildos at some point in the future: take a look at Funkit Toys and see if they’re selling the NoFrillDo.]

If you have more questions than these basics that I have provided, you should Google for the answers before you come to me. Someone else has probably answered that question already (but if you find conflicting info, hit me up, and I’ll research which one is correct).

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