As a kid, you probably always made sure your toys had fresh batteries. Now that you’re grown, your sex toys deserve the same TLC, particularly when it comes to keeping them clean.
Regularly cleaning your sex toys will keep the material and motors in shape, so that they last longer. Not to mention, your sex toys navigate sensitive terrain. While there’s nothing “dirty” about genitals, bacteria can build up on your toys and spread, so it’s important to clean them regularly.
You really should be washing your sex toys after every single use, and possibly before, too. When you buy a sex toy, there should be cleaning instructions somewhere on it. But if you’ve tossed the packaging, or just don’t remember, ahead are some tips. Whether you’re using a vibrator, dildo, strap-on, leather handcuffs, or anything else, here’s how you should clean your sex toys.
Wash before storing
After you use a sex toy, you should always clean it before you store it. You don’t want body fluids drying on it, and then sitting in a drawer. And depending where you store your toys, you might want to also rinse them off before you use them. If your vibrator or dildo is left out or in contact with other objects, it can collect lint, pet hair, or dust, and will benefit from a quick wash before use.
While you might be tempted to use your scented hand soap to make your sex toys smell nice, just don’t. It’s best to avoid using perfumed soaps, because they can leave a residue on the toy that can irritate your genitals when you use it again. You should also avoid using anti-bacterial soaps for the same reason, and just stick to something mild. The way that you clean your sex toy often depends on the material that it’s made out of. Non-porous materials, like silicone, hard plastic, elastomer, metal, or glass, are generally easier to clean. For those, you can wash with a mild, non-irritating soap and water, and don’t have to do any special disinfecting.
When you’re washing, be careful about submerging your toys completely in water — unless of course they’re waterproof. Waterproof toys can be dropped in a sink of soapy water, but that will damage the motor of others. If your toy isn’t waterproof, you should hold it under the faucet or just use a cloth to wipe it down.
Avoid the dishwasher
It’s best not to throw a toy in the dishwasher, unless you know it’s dishwasher-safe. Technically, pyrex toys could probably go on the top rack of a dishwasher and be fine, but other glass toys shouldn’t be exposed to high temperatures. And anything with a motor, like a vibrator, should only be hand-washed.
Try a special spray
Buying a special spray for your toys might seem like overkill, but it can be really handy to have. There are products that can be sprayed on and rinsed off and that can be safely used on latex, rubber, and silicone. Sprays are convenient to have if you need discretion, are traveling, or don’t like to get out of bed for a while after sex.
Consider a condom
Toys made from porous materials (like jelly rubber) can trap bacteria. That means that the toys can’t be completely disinfected, so I recommend using a condom over your toy for an added layer of protection. Also, jelly rubber is a somewhat outdated material that you should avoid, because it can contain potentially harmful materials, like phthalates.
P.S. For more information on erotic sex toys play and how you can better incorporate them into your sexual routine, check out my program on the matter – Lusty Vibrations.