It’s probably the most hush-hush subject on the planet, but when it comes to natural sex, we should all be talking about it more. Because although natural sex is the goal for so many of us, the… ahem… tools that we use to get it couldn’t be more unnatural: Hormone-disrupting phthalates and off-gassing VOCs abound! Use this guide to get some more natural sex.
Although natural sex is the goal for most of us, many of the… ahem… tools that we use to get it couldn’t be more unnatural. Use this guide to get more natural sex. Take lubricant, for example. Whether it’s coconut cream or mango delicious, that tube you stashed in your nightstand is probably chock-full of synthetic fragrance and petroleum by-products, which can cause irritation. And irritation, mi amor, makes you more susceptible to decidedly unsexy yeast infections. Ick.
Instead, look for lube that discloses a short list of all natural ingredients, and pay attention to these red flags: “perfume,” “parfum” or “fragrance” unless they’re clearly derived from natural ingredients like essential oils. Synthetic perfumes can mess up your hormones and interfere with your naturally sexy pheremones.
My top lube category for more natural sex? Cold-pressed, USDA Certified Organic jojoba, argan or sweet almond oils, which are not only effective–they’re cost-effective, too! But if you’re looking for a traditional lubricant, look for those that are paraben and petrochemical free like Good Clean Love and Organicglide, which also happens to be edible (in case you were wondering).
C’mon, don’t pretend you haven’t tried a sex toy once or twice—or thrice. Since Shades of Gray came out, they’re practically selling sex toys at Barnes & Noble. But sex toys also can be pretty toxic.
If the toys give off a weird smell, that means the plastic they’re made from is vaporizing often carcinogenic chemical compounds at room temperature—a process known as “off-gassing” volatile organic compounds, or VOCs. In short, anything that smells like a shower curtain you don’t want to put anywhere near your hoo-ha.
Stay away from VOCs by avoiding plastic, and look for toys made from silicone, wood or glass that you’ll love playing with—solo, or with a friend. Yes, the idea of glass sounds dangerous, but toys like this Black Obsidian Yoni Wand or Glass Pleasure Venus Beads (yes, really and no, I haven’t tried them) are designed not to break, no matter what. If you’re still worried about the shatter factor, choose a natural sex toy made from medical-grade silicone like this Silicone Rabbit Vibrator.
Whatever form of birth control you’re using, unless you’re in a long-term committed relationship you’ll still need additional STD protection, which can only come (sorry) from condoms. But not all condoms are created equal! I spent about a decade thinking I was allergic to sex, until I finally was diagnosed as latex-intolerant, which probably also had something to do with the spermicide’s toxic chemical fragrance, because it turns out I’m allergic to that, too. (Oh joy!)
Luckily, today there are many different condoms that can be used for more natural sex, including the one-for-one (meaning you buy one they donate one) condoms from Sir Richard’s which are vegan, as well as artificial fragrance free, but still latex based. From what I can tell, the only non-latex options are petrochemically derived and contain artificial lubricants, like these from Skyn and these female condoms from FC. Sigh.
If you’re looking for something that will… um… rev up your motor a little bit more than usual, forget about those little blue pills with the long list of side effects and try a more holistic and time-tested approach. Maca root, for example, has been used for centuries in Peru to increase libido–as well as energy. Similarly, ginkgo is said to increase blood flow to the capillaries–just like Viagra, but without the potential for a hospital visit–upping circulation and increasing sensitivity without affecting blood pressure.
Now, go get some natural sex!