Thursday, February 5, 2015

More About Lubes

The weekend has started and now you can rest easy with some more information about one of our favorite sexual aides: lube.  The promises are many.  The bells and whistles of what they say they are able to do varies greatly (as do their prices!).   Which is best to help you grease the wheels for your next ride?  I hope this information helps.  Studies show that lube make sex and masturbation more pleasurable for women regardless of whether or not you "need" it.

-Gel vs. Liquid-
Different brands of personal lubricant usually make a "gel."  This is an important distinction between "liquid" lubricants.  Gel or Jelly are no frills type of lube and can be easily spotted because they are usually packaged in a squeeze tube that looks like something you just might find in a doctor's office.  In fact, gels rather than liquids are what are used in medical examinations that require them.

Different brands are all nearly identical in price with a 4oz bottle costing you just around $4.00.  
I recall my embarrassment buying the tube pictured above from a traditionally dressed Muslim woman.  It felt nearly industrial sized.  Truth be told, as a Wallgreen's cashier she had probably rang up much worse  in her day and I was the far more embarrassed party in that transaction...

The main difference between a gel and a liquid?  Texture.  

Don't panic - that's just my forearm!  The left is gel.  The right is liquid.  You can see the liquid is ready to slide off my arm and the gel is staying put in its nice little blob.  

This is after giving it a little swoosh with my finger.  Another word about texture is that when gel has been sitting out a long time it can get a little sticky... Worst case scenario: flaky or clumpy.  Whereas liquid will always eventually rub in or rub off.  This is the reason why I keep both in stock - for different purposes.  Liquid lubricant is best for vaginal play and gel is best for anal.  This is because of the endurance of gel.  When applied vaginally - this is only my opinion - after the fun is over you are left with what will feel like a sticky mess.  However, a thick enduring lube is the key to entering any back door! When providing you a safety net that will make the difference between pleasure and pain you want the net to be as thick as possible!

The purpose of flavored lube is to "enhance oral contact."  This failed to make sense to me because while some erogenous zones need help getting wet - mouths usually don't.  Then the issue of safe sex hit me like a bigDUH in the face!  Because none of us suck on latex for fun, flavored lube is here to help!

This is the only kind of flavored lube I have had the pleasure of tasting to date.  I wouldn't lie to you dear readers... it is yummy.  I would put it on my ice cream - except that is weird and creepy.  The red is strawberry and the brown is chocolate and when mixed together taste even better.

A word of caution is that using flavored lubricants vaginally can put you at risk for a yeast infection because the bacteria that causes infections thrive off of eating sugar - a main ingredient in most flavored lubes.  So flavored lubricant should only be applied to the male body (or stay above the waste on females). 
He might be tempted to use the above products to make you into his own personal ice cream sundae, but please resist.

- Warming and Cooling -
This will be the most scientific section of our talk on lube. Lets discusswarming liquid first.

This is my go-to lube.  Always.  I love lubricant with a warming sensation the best!  The chemicals that allows it to feel warm are Propylene Glycol and Niacin.  Propylene Glycol is the same chemical used in antifreeze!  Niacin, or vitamin B-3, is known to make blood flow to the skin even when taken orally. What makes warming sensation lubes feel so good is they increase blood flow to areas of contact  :)  

Warming lubes could cause irritation if applied too frequently or in too large of an amount. Luckily, our friends at KY have configured these chemicals in a way that is designed to not be too hot for human skin and minimally irritating.  

However, THE WORST sexual experience I have ever gone through was due to Trojan Shared Pleasure Warm Sensation Condoms.

I know I am not the only one who has lived through the agony these things are capable of producing.  It scared me off from using warming lubricant for a long time - and what a shame!  I think the critical component here is that the lube was inside the condom where it was unable to be diluted with natural fluid and friction was maximal.... it was just way way too much heat!  I feel like the red on the wrapper could just as easily serve as a danger warning label.

Cooling lubricant is not as scientific.  The active ingredient to give it the cold sensation is one we are all familiar with: Menthol.  

Purchased for me as a gift last year this KY "Yours+Mine" combo features both a warming and a cooling lubricant.  The cooling lubricant quickly won the nick name "Peppermint Patty" and she and I were quite chummy in the few months after we were introduced.  When used as suggested (male applies the cooling and the female applies the warming) it created a lot of different sensations.  It wasn't an explosion or fireworks like the commercial suggested... but it was a nice way to spice things up.

-Price Point-
Shopping in the pharmacy section of your local retailer you can expect to see lube priced from $3-20.00!  That is quite the difference.  Doing some research I found that silicone based lubricants usually cost more.  They are recommended for anal play and male masturbation because they have more endurance.  However silicone based lubes should not be used with silicone based toys - making them an iffy choice for females.  

Also, the "Yours and Mine" series from KY, albeit water-based, is also a little spendy.  This I have to blame on packaging and advertising.  You get two colorful vials of fun goo that promise to do different things... its worth the extra dollars right?  KY is likely taking advantage of their target audience being someone trying to impress the person they're banging.  

I am someone who usually aims for the middle when it comes to quality and price point.  I don't buy Grey Goose but I certainly do not drink Karkov either.  So I wondered... is cheap lube really not all that?  How bad could it be?

So I bought some generic stuff on a quest to find out!  The consistency, honestly, was more watery than the name brand stuff.  However, it wasn't so inept that it couldn't get the job done.  If you're needing to watch your spending it isn't the worst thing you could use.

- The Sexpert

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