Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Vaginal Lube: A Little Extra

You don't have to dress up like a vulva to know that over the age of 55 or so, vaginal dryness can be a bit of a challenge. It's also true that you certainly don’t have to be anywhere near the second half of your life to benefit from a nice little bit of extra lubrication. In fact, even when everything’s in fine working order, making the decision to augment one’s own natural vaginal lubrication with a little something more can be a smart move for women of any age.

Naturally, you ask why. Well...

Because regardless of whether we’re young or old, gay or not, whether we’re having partnered sex or sex for one, well lubricated sex organs are way more sensitive and responsive than dry ones are. And while there are definitely devotees of a well tempered bit of friction, the fact is that lubricated vulvas are also less prone to injury during enthusiastic sex play. 

Of course, if you’re worried that your partner - if you have one - might take offense and wonder why enhancing the slip and slide factor is even necessary, you might suggest to him or her what others already know - that mutual lubing, as in "I lube yours and you lube mine," is a pleasurable act in itself and well worth the time it takes to accomplish it. And if your partner happens to be a guy, in this culture, anyway, penises have been known to appreciate and enjoy the heightened sensation that increased lubrication provides them as well.

Of course, there are countries and cultures where really, really, REALLY dry vaginas are considered way more preferable than lubricated ones. For example, some societies in sub-Saharan Africa completely reject the notion of vaginal wetness and lubrication of any kind during sex. 

The prevailing opinion in these societies is that the sensation of wetness is both nasty and distinctly not pleasurable. Not surprisingly, this line of thinking is held nearly exclusively by the men of these overwhelmingly patriarchal groups. Sadly, the social dominance of men in these cultures is often so complete that women are effectively coerced into providing their husbands and lovers as dry a vagina as is humanly, or inhumanly, possible.

Called “dry sex,” this often includes the demand that prior to having sex, the women of these groups artificially dry out their vaginas by inserting tampon-like plugs of a rough, absorbent material. Often the plugs are a conglomeration of a variety of local leaves, grasses, even soil, animal dung or sand. 

Once inserted, the plug is left in place long enough to absorb any natural lubricating wetness from the vaginal canal. It’s then extracted immediately before penetration, providing a tight, dry friction for the man and an arid, excruciatingly painful, lacerated vaginal environment that leaves women dangerously susceptible to gross injury and soaring rates of disease transmission. 

Women who refuse to comply or complain about this painful and dangerous practice are often ostracized or labeled as sexually deviant. In the case of married women, to refuse or complain is often to be divorced and ejected from their homes - with or without their children.

Of course, as human rights workers and individuals all over the planet who care about social justice raise their voices in protest against this sort of thing, it is my fervent hope that such rampant abuses of women’s bodies will become yet another defunct nightmare relic of a haunting and misogynist past.

But at the other end of the lubrication spectrum, we can certainly assist our bodies in reaching the highest levels of pleasure by lubing up, and indeed, the pivotal question then becomes:

What do we use?

A couple of points and caveats spring to mind here. First, while there are lots of enticing options at the corner drug store, it’s wise to check out their labels and avoid any stuff that’s laced with glycerin. The reason for this is that glycerin is a kind of sugar and as such, it’s likely to give you and/or your partner a whale of a yeast infection.

Also, anything that’s oil-based will definitely not be kind to condoms, and in fact, oil-based lubes will probably render your condoms unsafe and compromise the protection they’re supposed to provide. And if you’re a user of sex toys, vibrators, dildoes and so on, unless they’re those really pricey, very cool glass types, oil-based lubes will probably change the appearance of your toys, if not the way they work as well. For the sake of one’s condoms and sex toys, water-based lubricants are usually the best choice. They also tend not to stain the way some oil-based formulations do.

But take heart, all. Even if oil is close to your heart, there are some exceptionally good options out there in both the water-based and oil-based categories, and the variety is growing all the time. For example, there are now water-based, organic products made specifically for sex that contain only fragrant and flavorful plant extracts. There are also silicone-based lubricants that are quite long lasting. The silicone options aren’t for people who have issues with using chemicals, though, since they’re full of them. Like the kind of lube that warms when you apply it? There are organic versions of that available as well.

When all is said and done, however, for some folk simple is best. Which brings me to good old almond oil, and even coconut oil, the likes of which you can buy in any health food store. True, they’re deliciously light-weight and don’t have the staying power of some of the more industrial strength stuff, but for sheer purity and ease of clean-up, they’re the favorites of many.

While we’re at it, let’s remember that vaginal penetration is only one aspect of sexual activity that folks enthusiastically engage in. In fact, lots of women find that other activities, which we used to so quaintly refer to as foreplay, is often way more pleasurable for women than the so-called “main event.” Think clitoral stimulation here. Nipples. Tummies and soft inner thighs. And certainly then, lube’s an absolute must all around those areas as well, especially if the touch is by hand or vibe or anything other than a really, slobbery hot wet tongue.

Which brings us full circle, some might say. While lots of us have been relying on good old saliva since the dawn of the species, this is the year 2013. And there’s only so much that a dollop of spit can do, when you get right down to it. Right?

Do you have any preferences regarding lubrication? 

photo credit:<a href="http//"bmiller1710<a>via<ahref="">photopin</a><a href="">cc</a>


  1. I do not have any issues with Lubrication at all............. But if I needed lubrication I would use K-Jelly... :)

  2. Wow, interesting. I am saddened to learn that women in sub-Saharan Africa have to endure "dry sex". That have to be painful, like reliving being a virgin over and over again. I quess I would be that woman to get a divorce or thrown out the house because my body over produces lubrication. Good ole saliva is still a very effective method when needed.

  3. Thanks for the tips on the different options for lubricant. So far we have just been using saliva too. I am looking forward to trying new things and maybe this will be one of them.

  4. I am a fan of lubrication for a few reasons: Sometimes it is necessary when certain "equipment" need a lil extra help and also it can be a fun game to play with your partner. Companies have gotten very creative with flavors and heat sensitive lubs that can take your experience to a new level of pleasure... Just try it once!!!

  5. I have not used lubrication because I usually "prime the pump" first because I cannot enjoy the experience unless she does first. There is no need for lubrication.

  6. I love coconut oil as it also heats up in the action. My husband also enjoys it so that makes it much better.

  7. I find using lubes exciting! I feel sorry for the women in in Sub-Saharan Africia, they will never know the joys of sex, unless they somehow escape from that area, it brings back to that old adage in the middle eastern countries, that men are for sex and women are for having babies. Let me put the disclaimer out there: Not all middle eastern men practice this behavior and I'm not saying all African men either, but it seems from reading this post, that the men over there could care less if their women enjoyed sex or not, it is all about them and I am so glad I live here were both sexes enjoys being lubed!



  8. Never used lubrication thanks for the heads up might give it a try

  9. I do not have a preference when it comes to lubrication. I never was a lubrication person. As for now, I'm good with the natuarl lubrication. Although I have heard some great things about these diffrent kinds of lubricants, I have not had the chance to try any. Maybe I should consider it though.

  10. In reading this blog I was very unaware of the different types of lubrication and that they make a difference in protection that is offered. Also I could not believe how in Africa they do not use lubrication. I could only imagine how painful that could be to those women. I am thinking about trying it with my husband. It is something different.

  11. yeap myself!! thats the best wetness you will ever have.!! sorry! IJS

  12. I do not have a preference when it comes to lubrication. I personally enjoy natural luburication, however scents and sensations that lubes come in now are very exciting for couples!

  13. I have not had the need for lubrications. However, I do enjoys flavored body rubs and oils to spice things up. sgardner

  14. Informative information reading this blogs a little extra lubrication I never used any lubrication I was unaware of the different types water base, natural scented ones. Interesting enough to try. And it nice that their are product out there to kick it up a notch and to another level of sexual healing. bfields

  15. Never had to lubricate... I'm already lubricated enough good thing I guess always thought there was something wrong with me for that