Lube is a wonderful thing! It can reduce or eliminate pain during penetrative sex. Lube makes everything feel more pleasurable. Importantly, it makes sex safer by reducing the risk of vaginal or anal tearing which may even lower the risk of STI transmission.
If you’ve never thought about using lube during masturbation, you’re missing out. Let’s look at all the reasons you might want to explore using lube in your solo sex adventures.
Lack of wetness doesn’t mean lack of arousal
If you have a vulva, you might have experienced feeling super turned on but then realized you weren’t getting wet (or as wet as usual.) This is really normal! Levels of natural lubrication are determined by all sorts of things: where you are in your cycle, how hydrated you are, and even things like stress or lack of sleep. But if you feel turned on and want some solo fun, making up the difference with a bottle of lube is a great idea.
Extra slipperiness = extra fun
If you have a vulva, you might have noticed how much better being touched – or touching yourself – feels when you’re really, really wet? Well, lube just adds to that delicious slippery wet sensation.
Many penis owners have never experienced the additional pleasure of a lubed hand sliding up and down their junk. It makes the whole experience feel smoother. Lube also allows you to use more pressure than you might use without it. Using plenty of lube means you can also try different stroking techniques that might be uncomfortable otherwise.
Lube can ease pain and soreness caused by friction
Do you ever find that you experience pain either during or after masturbation? This is really normal and can be your body’s response when you apply too much pressure or rub a bit too hard in one spot, creating friction.
Adding plenty of lube reduces this friction. Many people find that it lessens or even completely prevents any post-masturbation soreness. (Remember: if the pain is intense, consistent, or has no obvious cause, then see your doctor or gynecologist straight away.)
Lube eases penetration
Not everyone includes penetration as part of their masturbation (or partnered sex). But lots of people like to insert fingers or sex toys vaginally, anally, or both. No matter how aroused you are, using plenty of lube on whatever you insert in your body to make penetration easier, smoother, and more pleasurable. Again, it also reduces the risk of small tears in the delicate vaginal or anal membranes. This can be very unpleasant and painful (and are also an infection risk if any bacteria gets into them.)
Inserting something vaginally without lube might be fine if you’re very aroused and ready. Never, ever insert anything anally without adequate lube! The anus isn’t self-lubricating, and you can really hurt yourself this way.
Lube provides additional sensations
Sometimes lubes can provide extra sensations in and of themselves! You can buy lubes that create self-warming or cooling sensations. Other lubricants have certain ingredients in them to create extra sensitivity or a tingling sensation. (Not everyone reacts well to the ingredients in these lubricants, so you might need to experiment to see what works for you. If you experience pain, burning, itching, or numbness, discontinue use straight away.)
These sensation-lubes add some variety to your masturbation routine. They also give you the opportunity to explore different kinds of sensations that you might enjoy.
Picking the right lube for you
- I always recommend water-based lube first. It is the gentlest on your body and compatible with all types of body-safe sex toys including silicone, glass, metal, and wooden toys. Silicone-based lube is thicker.
- Some people prefer the sensation, but it shouldn’t be used with silicone sex toys as it can cause damage.
- Many people really enjoy the slickness of oil-based lubes. But remember that oil products are not compatible with latex barriers, and can also stain your sheets and clothing.
I recommend avoiding lubes with glycerin/glycerol, as these are sugars and can cause yeast infections in people with vulvas. You should also never, ever use lubes with numbing ingredients (such as benzocaine). Not only do these reduce your pleasure, they also mean you can’t feel pain when you really need to. Pain is a sign that something is wrong and should be listened to!
You might need to experiment to find what lubes work for you. As a starting point, try something water-based with natural (and fewer) ingredients, such as Sliquid H2O.
There are many things that can add to your experience of hot solo sex – watching some super-sexy ethical porn, reading some hot erotica, sexting a partner, or exploring a new fantasy. But if I had to recommend a single thing that will almost certainly improve your experience straight away? Go get you some lube!
Have you used lube during sex before? What did you think? Share in the comment below!