Best Lube in 2022 – Top 10 Lubricants for Sex, Masturbation & Toys

best lube

If you want to buy the best lube for you but have no idea where to begin, this slippery guide will help you navigate the wet world of personal lubricants.

Have you ever been to a pharmacy and seen the huge wall of lubes?

There are just so many lubes to choose from. They all have different features, ingredients and attributes. I know, it can be a bit intimidating and overwhelming to figure out what kind of lube you should buy.

Top 10 Best Lubes in 2022

LubePriceInformation
Wet Platinum
Best lube
wet platinum masturbation gel
Bottle Type: Squeeze
Lube Type: Silicone
Quantity: 177 ml
Features: Long lasting
Safe For Silicone Sex Toys: No
Intimate Earth Ease
Best lube for anal
intimate earth lube to masturbate with
Bottle Type: Squeeze
Lube Type: Silicone
Quantity: 118 ml
Features: Vegan Friendly
Safe For Silicone Sex Toys: No
Intimate Earth Velvet
Best lube for sex
intimate earth velvet lubricant for handjob
Bottle Type: Squeeze
Lube Type: Silicone
Quantity: 118 ml
Features: Vegan Friendly
Safe For Silicone Sex Toys: No
Ah Yes
Best lube for sensitive skin
ah yes lube for raw sex
Bottle Type: Squeeze
Lube Type: Water-based
Quantity: 40 ml
Features: Organic
Safe For Silicone Sex Toys: Yes
Pjur Nude
Best lube for women
pjur women nude ph balance lube
Bottle Type: Squeeze
Lube Type: Water-based
Quantity: 100 ml
Features: Condom-safe
Safe For Sex Silicone Toys: Yes
Astroglide Natural
Best lube for ph balance
astroglide natural handjob lube
Bottle Type: Squeeze
Lube Type: Water-based
Quantity: 74 ml
Features: Condom-safe
Includes: Vitamin C and E
Lelo Personal Lube
Best lube for men
lelo personal lube for male masturbation
Bottle Type: Pump
Lube Type: Water-based
Quantity: 150 ml
Features: Condom-safe, Moisturizing
Safe For Sex Silicone Toys: Yes
Uberlube Luxury
Best lube for masturbation
uberlube luxury lube for wanking
Bottle Type: Glass, Pump
Lube Type: Silicone
Quantity: 50 ml
Features: Condom-safe
Includes: Vitamin E
Sliquid H2O
Best lube for toys
sliquid handjob lubricant
Bottle Type: Squeeze
Lube Type: Water-based
Quantity: 125 ml
Features: Fruity Flavor, Vegan Friendly
Allergen Warning: Contains Aspertame
Gun Oil
Best lube for condoms
gun oil lube for masturbation
Bottle Type: Squeeze
Lube Type: Silicone
Quantity: 120 ml
Features: Condom-safe
Safe For Silicone Sex Toys: No

What is Lube?

Lube is a slippery liquid that people use to make sex more enjoyable. It can be used for vaginal, anal, or oral sex. It can also be used to supplement masturbation or play with sex toys.

Lubrication is important for several reasons. First, it reduces friction during intercourse, which can lead to discomfort and even pain. Second, it can increase sexual pleasure for both partners. Finally, it can make intercourse last longer by reducing the need for additional lubrication.

Types of Lube

Here are the broad categories that lubes fall into:

Water-based lube

Water-based lube is the most commonly found type of lube. They are typically made from 95% water and have a feeling reminiscent of natural vaginal lubrication. If you are looking for an all-purpose lube, you probably want something water-based.

It is generally safe to use with all types of toys and condoms and for almost any sex act as well. The best lube for Fleshlight is water based for example. Water-based lube is easier to clean up than other lubes and does not stain sheets. It also comes off of the body quite easily. It also tends to be the cheapest option.

Silicone lube

Silicone lube is longer lasting than water-based lube and does not need to be reapplied as often; this makes it a great choice for anal play. It is also safe to use with all types of condoms.

Silicone lubes tend to be on the more expensive side, but just a little goes a long way, and because it doesn’t require continuous reapplication, the cost difference can be negligible. Silicone lube does not absorb into the skin. It’s also waterproof, so it can be used in a shower sex session.

Although it has tons of benefits, silicone lube can also be messy and more difficult to clean up than water-based lube.

Silicone lubes are generally considered some of the safest, gentlest and most effective on the market.

Oil-based lube

Oil-based lubricants are great for massages and can make sex feel more luxurious. However, they can break down condoms and shouldn’t be used with silicone-based sex toys. They can also be more difficult to clean up. If you want to avoid added chemicals, oil-based lubes are often made exclusively from all-natural oils. They’re also gentle and non-toxic.

Hybrid lubes

Hybrid lubes are usually a combination of water-based and silicone. Different brands will use different formulations and percentages. One nice thing about hybrid lubes is that they have the same long-lasting and smooth properties as silicone lube, but cleanup is easier. Hybrid lubes are less likely to leave permanent stains than oil or silicone based lubes. They’re also safe to use with condoms, but usually not recommended for use with silicone sex toys.

Flavored lubes

Flavored lubes are designed to add an extra dimension of taste and smell to sexual activity. They are generally safe to ingest and there is a wide array of flavors available. They are cleanlier and more convenient than incorporating real food like whipped cream or chocolate into your sex life. Flavored lubes can be a fun way to spice up your foreplay, but they’re only recommended for use with manual and oral sex.

Flavored lubes shouldn’t be used internally because they can cause irritation and create a pH imbalance in some women. The majority of flavored lubes are water-based.

Sensation lubes

There are a host of lubes on the market which advertise tingling, cooling or warming effects. These can be fun to experiment with if you enjoy a little extra stimulation during sex. Be warned, however, that some people find these sensation lubes to be too intense, or even irritating and painful.

If you’re new to using them, start with a small amount and see how you react before using more. You can also dab a small amount onto a part of your body other than your genitals to see if you like the feeling or not. Keep in mind that if you’re using it for couples sex, both partners will be experiencing the sensation of the lube, so it’s important that everyone is on board and finds the sensations pleasurable.

Other Properties of Lubes

There are a few important properties to know about how certain ingredients effect lubes.

Osmolality

Osmolality measures the total concentration of all substances in a particular solution. Osmolality is important because it determines the osmotic pressure of a solution. Osmotic pressure is the pressure that would be required to stop osmosis from occurring.

If two substances have different osmotic pressures, then the one with the higher osmotic pressure will tend to lose water to the one with the lower osmotic pressure You’re probably wondering how this all ties in with sexual lubricants.

Well, if a lube has a higher osmolality than a bodily fluid it would be considered hyper-osmotic. When hyper-osmotic lube comes in contact with human tissues, cells will work to release water in order to maintain homeostasis. This can end up drying out and killing cells, destroying a layer of protection and making the vagina or rectum more susceptible to bacterial infection.

Lubricant for women are designed to prevent dryness, but unfortunately lubes which are hyper-osmotic will do just the opposite over time.

At the other end of the spectrum are lubes which are hypo-osmotic. This is essentially the reverse of hyper-osmotic products. To maintain homeostasis, your body will work to pull water out of the lubricant. Also not ideal.

A perfect balance would be a lube which is iso-osmotic, meaning its osmotic pressure is just about equal to the human tissue it will be interacting with.

Water has an osmolality of 0, while the vagina has an osmolality of 300 mOsm/kg.Because of additives like glycerin and propylene glycol, water-based lubes tend to have a higher osmolality than other lubes.

The WHO (World Health Organization) recommends using lubes that are below 380 mOsm/kg. However, most commercially available lubes are in the range of 1,000-10,000 mOsm/kg. So anything under 1,200 mOsm/kg is generally considered acceptable.

So, how do you determine the osmolality of a given lube? That can be tricky, as many lubes simply don’t list this information. If they do list it, it means it’s within a healthy range and they want consumers to know. So, if they don’t list it you can assume the osmolality levels are pretty high.

Silicone lubes are not generally hypo-osmotic, so their osmolality will always be within a healthy range.

Water-based lubricants l that contain petrochemicals like propylene glycol, benzene and benzoic acid are more likely to be hyper-osmotic.

pH Level

Another important variable in the world of lubes is pH level.

pH is a measure of how acidic or alkaline a substance is. You probably remember using pH strips to test various liquids in your science class at school.

pH levels are important when it comes to lubricant because they can affect the health of the vagina and the anus. While vaginal pH levels fluctuate naturally with the menstrual cycle, introducing foreign substances (like lube) can affect the body’s natural pH balance.

This imbalance can have negative consequences on a woman’s health because it can provoke bacterial vaginosis or a yeast infection. A healthy normal pH level for the vagina of a woman is anywhere from around 3.5-5.0. Rectal level is typically around 7.0.

So how can you determine the pH level of a lube you want to use? As with osmolality, the label usually won’t list it, unless the reading is very low. The good news is that most lubes range in pH from 3.0-6.0, which is generally considered acceptable. For water-based lubes, the WHO recommends using those that hover around the 4.5 range and don’t exceed 7.0.

Lube Ingredients To Watch Out For

The information contained in this section is general and although most people will be fine, everyone should always carefully read labels on the lube they purchase in case they have any allergies or sensitivities. Keep in mind that just because a product advertises organic ingredients it does not necessarily mean they are better than artificial ones. Unfortunately there’s no 100% safe way to tell you which lube to buy because every person is different.

Most commercial lubricants have a lot of added ingredients with complex-sounding names. Most of these are harmless and generally safe. Some of these ingredients can be problematic to specific people based on their individual sensitivities. Here are a few broad categories of added ingredients, and certain chemicals to look out for:

Humectants

Humectants are ingredients found in lube that help to keep them from drying out. They also help to keep the lubricant from absorbing into the skin by slowing down the evaporation of water. Often, humectants can affect the lubricant’s consistency by increasing viscosity.

There are a variety of humectants that can be used in sexual lubricants. Glycerin and propylene glycol are some of the most commonly used humectants.

Glycerin (or glycerol) is a sweet-tasting humectant that is often used in food products. It is also a popular ingredient in many types of skin care products. It can help a lube to retain water. Glycerin can affect the pH balance of the vagina. Unfortunately, it can also contribute to yeast infections for some women.

Propylene glycol is another common humectant (and preservative) in lubes. It is a synthetic ingredient that is often used in cosmetics and other personal care products. It can help to keep the lubricant from drying out. The Food & Drug Administration considers it to be “generally recognized as safe.” But it does have potential to alter pH balance and potentially create allergic reactions in some users.

Natural alternatives to these chemical humectants include jojoba oil, shea butter and honey.

Preservatives

Many popular brands of lubricant contain preservatives.

Parabens are commonly added to personal lubricants to extend their shelf life. However, there is some concern that they may be absorbed through the skin and contribute to hormone imbalances. Generally, they are considered safe

There are a few paraben-free lubricants on the market, and more are likely to become available as consumer demand grows.

Sorbates and benzoic acid are other common preservatives that are often used in foods, but also in lube. They can make lubes last longer and kill off harmful bacteria. But they can lead to allergic reactions in some users.

Flavored lubes often contain preservatives as well. Your best bet is to use them strictly for oral sex and keep them away from the vagina.

Spermicides

Some lubricants advertise their ability to prevent conception through inclusion of spermicides like nonoxynol-9.

While it may sound great to use a lubricant as a contraceptive, spermicides containing nonoxynol-9 are generally one of the least effective contraceptives unless used in combination with other contraceptive devices (like a condom). They also don’t prevent the spread of STDs.

Additionally, nonoxynol-9 can create irritation and result in bacterial infections.

Anti-Bacterials

Many common, commercially-available lubes contain chlorhexidine gluconate, an antibacterial which is also used to make mouthwash. While antibacterial may sound like something you’d want, keep in mind that the vagina houses healthy bacteria which are necessary to maintaining good health. Specifically, the lactobacillus bacteria (a probiotic that is commonly found in the digestive and urinary tract) can be killed off by chlorhexidine gluconate.

Pain Killers

Some lubes advertise their ability to numb your penis so that you can last longer. This is usually achieved with the addition of benzocaine or lidocaine to the lubricant. These pain-killing agents are generally considered safe when used in small amounts, but can be toxic if used to excess. When using numbing lubes, make sure to be frugal.

How to Choose the Best Lube For You

If you can’t decide which lube to get, here are some tips for choosing the right one:

1) If you’re using sex toys, water-based lube is a must

Silicone is an incredible material and it is used to make a plethora of sex toys. This is because of its soft, squishy, flesh-like feel. Unfortunately, silicone toys are not compatible with silicone lube. When silicone lube rubs against a silicone toy, it can break down the toy and cause degradation over time. This is unfortunate because many people swear by the gentle slipperiness of silicone lube. The good news is that any water-based lube will be just fine and allow you to get the most out of your toys.

2) If you’re concerned about osmolality, silicone lube is your friend

Added ingredients in water-based lubes are typically the culprit in making lubes hypo-osmotic. Silicone tends to be safer in this respect, as any silicone lube will have an osmolality that is similar to the vagina or rectum. That being said, there are some water-based lubes on the market that do have a low osmolality, so it’s definitely worth doing your research before making a purchase.

3) If you’re looking for anal lube, a thicker consistency can be better

Anal play can be tons of fun, but it necessitates the use of lube more than any other sexual activities. That’s because the anus does not self-lubricate like the vagina does. For anal, you’ll want to use a lube that is thick enough to provide adequate slipperiness and cushioning. This will help make the experience more comfortable and enjoyable. A thicker lube designed for anal will last longer, meaning you won’t have to re-apply in the middle of a session, or worry about the pain and discomfort that a dried up lube can create.

4) If you’re having sex with a condom, use a silicone or water-based lube

Condoms are an important part of safe sex, but they can sometimes cause discomfort. Using a lube can help make sex more enjoyable and help reduce the risk of condom breakage. Oil-based lubes can break down latex and many of the most common commercially available condoms are latex. So when using a condom, always stick with silicone or water-based lubes.

5) If you want to make oral more exciting, try a flavored lube

There are all sorts of flavors to choose from, so you can find one that suits your taste. Make sure to test the lube on your skin before using it on your partner. This will help you avoid any potential allergic reactions. Because flavored lubes are usually water-based, if it tastes too sweet, you can add a little bit of water to dilute it.

6) If you want the long-lasting and smooth feel of silicone without the messy cleanup, try a hybrid lube

Hybrid lubes are a mix of water and silicone, so they have the best of both worlds. They are long-lasting, sticky and slippery like silicone lubes, but they are easy to clean up like water-based lubes. Unfortunately this means they’re less likely to be waterproof.

What to Look For in a Lube

Here are a few things you can look out for when deciding which lube to purchase:

  • The right price

Water-based lubes tend to be cheapest and silicone lubes are more expensive. A bottle of lube can cost anywhere from around $5 and all the way up to around $70. There’s a lube for your budget, no matter how much you’re willing to spend.

  • Made for your intended use

There are different types of lube for different purposes. Make sure you get a lube that is designed for the type of activity you’re planning on using it for. For example, if you’re intending to use it for anal sex, you might consider getting a lube that advertises itself as an anal lube. These products will tend to have a better thickness and viscosity for anal. If you know you are going to be using a condom, make sure to go water-based or silicone. If it’s for a sex toy, water-based is the only safe bet.

  • Free of glycerin and parabens

These ingredients can cause irritation, so it’s best to avoid them if possible. You can check the ingredients on the back of the package.

  • Reputable brands like Swiss Navy, Gun Oil, Sliquid and Uberlube

High-quality lubes come from trusted brands like Swiss Navy, Gun Oil, Sliquid and Uberlube. While these brands may carry a higher price tag than other lubes, their products are tried and true and work effectively.

  • Waterproof

This is a good option if you want to use your lube in the shower, pool or hot tub. Usually only silicone or oil-based lubes will be waterproof.

How To Use Lube

Lube can be used for a wide variety of sex acts. Here’s how to put it to use:

1) Apply Lube

Using one hand, distribute lube from its container into your other hand. Keep one hand on reserve as the ‘clean hand’ to deal with any mess or stickiness the lube might create. Apply the lube to your body, your partner’s body, your condom or your sex toy. In all cases it’s important that both parties are adequately lubricated to get the most out of the experience.

Start with a small amount of lube and see how it feels. More can always be applied later. Silicone lube will require less quantity than water-based.

2) Have fun with your lube

After lube is applied you can use it for a plethora of fun sexual activities. Obviously it works great for making vaginal and anal sex more comfortable and pleasurable, with our without a condom. But you can also use it to make oral sex (both cunnilingus and fellatio) more slippery without drying out your mouth. It can also help out while fingering your partner’s vagina or stroking a penis. Both men and women can use it to enhance solo masturbation. To get the most out of almost any sex toy, lube should be utilized as well. Keep in mind that if you’re using water-based lube it will likely need to be re-applied a few times during your session.

3) Clean up

Lube will almost always need to be cleaned up from your body and sheets. Silicone and oil-based lubes will be more difficult to clean.

First, wipe up any excess lube with a clean towel. If there is lube on your sheets, spray liberally with stain remover and let sit for a few minutes before running it through the washing machine.

If there is lube on your body, simply wash it off with soap and water. Silicone lubes may require a little more effort and may require a shower. If there is lube on your toys, wash them with soap (or sex toy cleaner) and water.

Benefits of Using Lube

Lubes have a host of great benefits:

  • Reduces friction during sex
  • Necessary for a great anal experience
  • Can make sex more pleasurable
  • Can prevent condoms from breaking
  • Can be used during foreplay as a fun bridge to sex
  • Enhances masturbation, anal, vaginal, oral and manual sex
  • Water-based lube helps you get the most out of your sex toys

Disadvantages of Using Lubes

Some downsides of using lubes:

  • Silicone and oil-based lubes can be difficult to clean
  • Water-based lubes may require repeated re-application
  • Added ingredients can cause allergic reactions or irritation in some users
  • Silicone lubes can damage sex toys
  • Sensation lubes can be painful for some users

Lube FAQ

What effect does lubricant have on sex?

Lube reduces friction during sexual intercourse, making sex acts more comfortable and pleasurable. They also reduce the risk of condoms breaking, meaning lube assists in preventing the spread of disease and unwanted pregnancy.

Is it ok to put lube inside your body?

Yes, most lube is made to use inside your body. Be sure to choose a type of lube that is safe to use with your chosen method of sex. For example, don’t use flavored lubes for anything except oral.

Is silicone lube better than water-based lube?

It depends upon your needs and preferences. Silicone lube is longer lasting, more slippery and more difficult to clean. If you prefer a flavored or sensation-inducing lube, you will mostly find water-based options.

Water-based lubes tend to be more budget-friendly.

Can I use lube with a condom?

Yes, lube can and should be used with condoms. It is important to use a water-based or silicone lube, as oil-based lubricants can damage the condom.

Can I use baby oil as lube?

It’s not recommended to use baby oil as a lubricant. While it is safe to use on the surface of your skin as a moisturizer, baby oil can cause irritation in the vagina when used as a lubricant. It also has the potential to break down condoms. It’s safer to use a commercial product specifically made for sexual purposes.

How do you lubricate before sex?

Always start by applying lube to your hands, not directly to your genitals. Start with a small amount and rub it a bit. Then slowly apply it to yourself, your partner or both. Keep in mind that you can apply a bit of lube inside of the tip of a condom and on the tip of your penis as well. If you or your partner experience any discomfort, apply more.

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