Banana with lube being poured on it.

The Real Truth on Sex Lubes

Written by: Dr. Brian Steixner

With spring in full swing that means summer is right around the corner! With summer only a few weeks away, some of our favorite memories: school’s out, swimsuits, sparklers, and of course, slip n’ slides. As adults, we still have the desire to slip and slide, but it can take a more sexual connotation: with lube! Water-based (or otherwise) lubricants often take center stage in the realm of sexual wellness, yet discussions surrounding lube seem to be taboo. Many think kink when it comes to lubricants, but even with a kinky connotation, we never kink shame here at Popstar.

Understanding and embracing the role of lubricants can vastly improve sexual experiences whether it's with others or solo dolo. Whether you’re looking to spice things up in the bedroom or enhance comfort in intimate moments, Popstar is back with the tips (and so much more than just the tip) on how to stay slick all summer long! 

What are Sex Lubricants?

Before we learn about the various types, we must understand what sex lubricants are! Sex lubricants, colloquially known as lubes, are products designed to reduce friction during sexual activity. They come in various forms, including water-based, silicone-based, oil-based, and hybrid lubricants. Each type has unique properties, making them suitable for different preferences and purposes. Let’s dive in! 

Water-Based Lubricants

Speaking on diving in, up first on our list of lubes is water-based! Water-based lube can put the wet in WAP circa Cardi B. and Meg Thee Stallion. Water-based is among the most popular choices for its compatibility with condoms and sexy toys. It also won’t stain the sheets and there is virtually no clean up. Additionally, they’re suitable for people with sensitive skin and are less likely to cause irritation or allergic reactions.

Not to be a wet blanket, but even with all the pros associated with water-based lubes, there are some cons. Water-based lubricants may require frequent reapplication as they dry out faster than other types, which make stop the stream of your freaky flow. That being said, water-based lube is a great place to start for lube noobs.

Something to also note, ironically, water-based lubricants are not great for shower sex as it washes away like…well…water. Something better suited for a shower for two is our next lube.

Silicone-Based Lubricants

Let’s take it to silicone valley for a moment. Next on the list of lubes is silicone-based. A great way to slick the slide to better explore your partner’s peaks and valleys. Silicone-based lubes offer a silkier texture and are longer lasting than its watery counterpart. Like the Gobstopper of sex. As we previously mentioned, silicone-based lubes are great for shower sex or skinny dipping, due to their water-resistant qualities.

However, things can get a little slippery with silicone-based lubes. While they are compatible with latex condoms, they should not be used on silicone-based toys, as they can degrade the material over time. Though they are long lasting, they may be harder to wash off and can leave longer-lasting residue on skin or stains on fabric. 

Oil-Based Lubricants

A more holistic way to oil your orifices. Oil-based lubes, such as coconut or mineral oil offer a natural alternative with a rich, luxurious feel. They are long-lasting and can be soothing for dry or sensitive skin. While they can soothe your skin, much like silicone-based lubricants, they are not compatible with latex condoms or certain sex toys. With the long-lasting properties comes the potential for stains and a more challenging cleanup.

A fun fact about using coconut oil during sex is the delicious scent. The sweetness of coconut oil can make it smell like you are baking cookies when you are knocking. However, it may have you trigger your sweet tooth while you work up an appetite during sex. But hey, that is was Uber Eats is for, right? For post-sex snacks.

Hybrid Lubricants

The best of both lubricant worlds. Hybrid lubes attempt to combine the positive properties of both water-based and silicone-based lubes with longevity and easy cleanup. Another upside to hybrid lubricants is that they are suitable for use with condoms and most sex toys, providing versatility for various sexual activities. Hybrid lubes are a decent choice for those seeking a balanced lubrication experience without the drawbacks associated with specific types. While hybrid lubes are the Prius of penis primers, some some people will say that the hybrid-based lubes lose the real individual benefits of water or silicone-based lubes and leave you wishing you stayed with the one you prefer. 

Sexual lubricant in a clear vial

Choosing the Right Lube

Much like anything regarding sex, selecting the right lube depends on indivual preferences. Sensitivities and intended use also come into play. Consider the who, what, when, where, and why of your sexcapades. Individual needs of those involved, location, if condoms and sex toys are in play, avoiding stains on your egyptian cotton sheets, will all play a role in deciding which lubricant is best for you. Lube can also take some trial and error. It may take some experimentation to find the perfect lube that enhances pleasure and comfort during intimate moments.

Enhancing Pleasure and Comfort

Now we know the types of lubes that are available to us, lets discuss why you would want to use them. Beyond reducing friction, sex lubes can enhance pleasure and intimacy in numerous ways. They can intensify sensation, making sex more enjoyable for both partners. Experimenting with different textures and flavors can also add an element of excitement and novelty to sexual encounters. Additionally, using lube can facilitate the exploration of new positions and activities, promoting open communication and experimentation between partners. Staying slick can keep your sex life spicy!

You think you’re slick now, don’t ya! Sex lubricants play a vital role in sexual wellness, offering enhanced pleasure, comfort, and intimacy for individuals and couples alike. With various lubes available, finding the right one involves considering factors such as texture, longevity, and compatibility. Whether you're looking to spice things up or enhance comfort during intimate moments, incorporating lube into your sexual repertoire can lead to more satisfying and fulfilling experiences.

Embrace the versatility and potential of sex lubes to elevate your sexual encounters and deepen your connection with your partner. We hope this guide to getting slick will help you slip ‘n slide all summer and stay lubed for even longer!

Dr. Brian Steixner

Dr. Brian Steixner

Dr. Brian Steixner is a board-certified urologist and an expert in men’s sexual medicine. He completed his General Surgery and Urology training at The University of Pennsylvania and The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, one of the busiest and most comprehensive programs in the nation. During his career, Brian has treated thousands of men with sexual health issues including male factor infertility.