Sexual lubricants, sometimes called personal lubricants, can greatly enhance sexual pleasure between partners. When making love to a partner lubricants can add to the erotic feel of the experience. For some women it may be essential to use a sexual lube as it is quite common for many women's vaginas don't self-lubricate enough, and these women can find intercourse extremely uncomfortable. Lubrication is often the answer.
There are three types of lubricants: Water-based, petroleum-based and those made from natural oils, and silicone-based. Each has its advantages and disadvantages.
Water-based Lubes are the most versatile, safe and popular lubricants for all situations. They are safe to use with condoms and all forms of barrier birth control. In addition, water-based lubricants are safe to use with sex toys, which are usually made of either latex, silicone, or plastic.
It is rare that water-based lubricants cause irritation, and they don't stain clothing. They are safe to ingest, and they come in both flavored and unflavored varieties. They tend to dry out over extended periods, but a little water or saliva will get you slick again.
Petroleum-based lubes & natural oil-based lubes include Vaseline products, mineral oil products and baby oil. Unfortunately, these products all destroy latex, so they cannot be used with condoms, cervical caps or diaphragms. In addition, they can inflame and irritate the vagina. They also stain clothing. Petroleum-based lubes do tend to last well, so they are often used by men during masturbation.
The natural oil lubricants come from sources such as nuts or vegetables. Like petroleum-based lubes, they too destroy latex (condoms, diaphragms and cervical caps) and stain clothing. However, they do have one key advantage over petroleum-based lubes: they don't cause vaginal irritation. This makes them excellent for female and male, as well as unprotected vaginal.
Silicone-based lubricants offer the benefits of water-based lubricants with the addition of being waterproof, so they may be used in the bath, or the jacuzzi, or... In addition, they tend to lubricate longer than water-based lubes. Silicone will not hurt latex, so they're safe with condoms and other forms of barrier birth control; however, they can affect adult toys made from silicone. Many people report greater satisfaction with the the feel and performance of a silicone lubricant.
About the author:
Lance Russell has lectured about sexuality at Universities in California