Sex toys have gone mainstream thanks to pop culture, but do you know how to stay healthy while having fun in the bedroom?
Sex experts share their top tips on how to play it safe when purchasing, cleaning, and using sex toys.
What health considerations are important when purchasing sex toys?
First consider whether the item is designed to be a sex toy,a well-made sex toy should be smooth and unbreakable, and can be cleaned sufficiently. Some hard plastic toys–which are typically safe products–have a seam in the middle or a hole where a battery or cord protrudes. Avoid toys like this that have hard-to-clean parts.
What’s the proper way to clean sex toys?
Use a safe cleaner made specifically for sex toys, or mild soap and warm water. Never submerge a battery-operated sex toy or an electric non-waterproof vibrator. You can boil silicone and Pyrex toys or run them through the dishwasher as long as they don’t have electrical components.
Many products can clean sex toys, but leftover residue may be irritating later. If you have a vibrator that can’t be rinsed, wipe off the cleaning agent residue with a clean wet cloth. Liquid hand soap or dish soap is strong enough in most cases, and hydrogen peroxide is a fairly mild germicide. Silicone stands up to harsher chemicals like bleach better than other soft toys will, but the harsher the chemical, the more vital it is to ensure residue is rinsed off completely.
Is it safe to share sex toys?
If two healthy people are already sharing fluids through oral sex and intercourse, then there is likely no additional risk to sharing a sex toy if they are monogamous. However, STDS can be transmitted via sex toys, so it’s not a good idea to share sex toys with friends or roommates.