Vaginal Health

Essential Information for Purchasing Vaginal Lubricants

May 22, 2018

The use of vaginal lubricants is well worth considering if you are experiencing a scarcity of physical arousal or vaginal dryness during sex. Being well lubricated can reduce the probability of vaginal tears and irritation, which can, in turn, reduce your risk of contracting a sexually transmitted infection (STI). If you’re using a condom, lube can also help cut down on the danger that the condom will break.

With all these lubricants on the market, however, how can you know which to select?

Water-Based Lubricants

Water-based lubricants are normally the best option, particularly if you’re using a condom and/or are vulnerable to yeast infections. Silicone-based lubricants are also fine to use with condoms. People sometimes choose a silicone-based lubricant on water-based options since they can be slippery and also last longer, especially in the bath or shower. They can be more expensive, though, and can also break down sexual toys made from silicone.

Oil-Based Lubricants

These are debatable and must not be used with latex condoms. The oil breaks down the latex and leaves the easier to break.

You should also never use a lubricant that has fats, oils, or greases such as petroleum-based jelly (such as Vaseline), baby oil or lotion, hand or body lotions, cooking shortening, or oily cosmetics like cold cream.

They could seriously weaken latex, causing a condom to tear easily. They may have other adverse effects on the body as well.

When Does Vaginal Dryness Occur?

You might have heard that vaginal lubricants or lotions are just for women going through menopause. Vaginal dryness is a common result in this time period in a woman’s life when her estrogen levels naturally drop.

But, normal estrogen changes throughout the course of a woman’s lifestyle can also often cause vaginal dryness, producing the demand for extra vaginal lubrication. Vaginal dryness frequently happens during menstruation, pregnancy, nursing and times of psychological stress.

A number of medications, such as some birth control pills, can interfere with vaginal lubrication, including Ortho-Cyclen and Depo Provera. Other medications like Xanax and Ativan, some calcium channel blockers, beta blockers and perhaps even over-the-counter allergy cold and allergy drugs may also lead to vaginal dryness.

Further Reading on Vaginal Dryness

  • How Can Lubricant Use Affect STD Risk?   If you are having penetrative sexual intercourse, whether it’s anal sex or vaginal intercourse, lubricants are a good idea. They reduce friction, and making repeated penetration not as inclined to cause irreparable harm, or even ripping, of the vaginal or anal canal.
  • How To Use Condoms and Prevent Condom Failure. No form of birth control is ideal. Not condoms, which may break and tear during sex. In fact, 2-5 percent of condoms split when you utilize them. This can typically be avoided by making certain you’re using them the right way.
  • All You Need to Know About Condoms. What they are, how they work, and much more.
  • Should I Use Additional Lubricant with My Lubricated Condom? Condoms can be an effective means of birth control and of protecting against sexually transmitted Infections (STIs). But what else can you do to make your sexual experience even better? Are you covering all of your bases?