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The Ultimate Guide to Sex Toy Materials

Are your toys body-safe?

Unlike many other industries, sex toys are barely regulated, which makes it easy for manufacturers to use any old material for their toys and hard for consumers to choose what is right for them – especially if they are new to the world of sex toys. Sex toys are classified as "novelty items" and therefore aren´t regulated by the FDA standards such as children´s toys or medical devices, leaving manufacturers with relatively lax regulatory standards an the temptation to use cheap and possibly dangerous materials.

Choosing the right toy for you can be incredibly overwhelming: not only colours, shapes and sizes, but also the variety of functions and materials make it nearly impossible to choose your toy without the security of a 30-day money-back guarantee. How are you meant to choose?

This is why, we have created a quick guide to the most popular sex toy materials highlighting material characteristics and their safety, what lubricants these materials are compatible with and what we do and do not like about them.

 

Silicone 

Silicone Rabbit Vibrator

  • Touch & Feel | Silky, and often soft and squishy to strong and firm
  • Body Safe | Non-toxic, non-porous (latex-free, phthalate-free, hypoallergenic) material 
  • Lubricants | Water-based only
  • Why we like it Silicone is extremely versatile, realistic feel, easy to clean, different firmness possible
  • What to consider | Not compatible with silicone-based lubricant, be aware of “silicone-blends”, which are not body-safe

 

Glass

Glass Dildo

  • Touch & Feel | Hard, Smooth, Heavy
  • Body Safe | Safe to use, made of Borosilicate glass (Pyrex) or soda-lime glass, non-porous material
  • Lubricants | Any type of lubricant
  • Why we like it | Great material for temperature play e.g. with hot or cold water (avoid extreme temperatures, it might make the glass crack or hurt your skin)
  • What to consider | Be mindful of any damage to your product and check for chips and cracks before use. Pull-ring handles in a glass toy are weak points and might break easier, so be mindful of that, too. 

 

ABS Plastic

Silicone Vibrator with ABS plastic handle

  • Touch & Feel | Hard plastic, smooth material
  • Body Safe | Non-porous body-safe material
  • Lubricants | Any type of lubricant
  • Why we like it | Inexpensive and easy to clean
  • What to consider | If the whole toy is made of this material, it might be a bit buzzy. However, most mid-range to premium brands would only use it for certain parts of their toys such as handles (see image, golden handle) or little bullet vibrators that are part of e.g. a vibrating cock ring. 

 

Metal

Metal Toy Butt Plug

  • Touch & Feel | Hard, smooth, heavy
  • Body Safe | Non-porous body-safe material, often stainless steel or aluminium, some luxury brands even offer gold or silver
  • Lubricants | Any type of lubricant
  • Why we like it | Like glass, it is also a great material to experiment with temperatures. We also love how heavy they are and how it makes them perfect as G-Spot dildos or anal plugs
  • What to consider | Often more on the high-end pricey side of the toys range

 

Jelly Rubber/PVC/Rubber

Jelly non-body safe sex toy material

  • Touch & Feel | Soft
  • Body Safe | NOT safe, porous material, contains phthalates
  • Lubricants | Water-based
  • Why we like it | Inexpensive, but that´s all
  • What to consider | These toys aren´t considered body-safe and cannot be cleaned entirely due to the small pores that allow bacteria, viruses and fungi to grow. The use of phthalates, a material that has been banned in many toys because of its toxic nature, is also concerning and might cause burning, itchiness, nausea or other infections. If you still want to use them, please consider using a condom. 

 

In a nutshell, stay away from sex toys made of "Jelly" rubber, rubber and PVC as well as porous materials such as TPR, TPE and elastomer which can harbour mold and bacteria. 

Experiment with different sex toy materials from our list above and you´ll find that you might be into one material for one thing but another material for the other! 

HAPPY MASTURBATING!

 

Updated 05/2020

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