Can I Use Coconut Oil As Lube, Or Is That A Terrible Idea?
People are shunning chemicals in their food, toiletries, and yeppp, even the stuff they use between the sheets. One common swap: Using coconut oil as lube instead of more traditional products.
“People are looking for lubes without chemicals that can aggravate their skin,” says Dr. Alyssa Dweck, a New York-based gynae.
Coconut oil seems like the PERFECT natural lube — it’s a staple in many vegan recipes and can even make your hair look bangin’.
But is it actually safe to use pure coconut oil or coconut oil-based lubes for, ya know, sex? Read on before getting it on.
The benefits of using coconut oil as lube
You probably already have a jar of coconut oil in your pantry, so it’s certainly an easy alternative if you happen to run out of regular ol’ lube. It smells and tastes good, too, an added incentive for oral.
But many people choose coco oil because it’s less likely to irritate their skin ~down there~. “Many women like coconut oil as a massage oil and lubricant, and most report that they use it because it’s natural and chemical-free,” Dr. Dweck says.
The good news is, coconut oil is a safe lube option for most people because it doesn’t contain any added chemicals, such as parabens, that could be considered endocrine disruptors (AKA chemicals that can cause an imbalance of key hormones that regulate your reproductive system), Dr. Dweck says.
The downsides of using coconut oil as lube
Though it’s safe and non-irritating for most people, there’s always a chance your skin may be sensitive or react negatively to coconut oil. Indeed, oils could increase the risk of bacterial vaginosis infections, according to an Obstetrics and Gynecology study. But as Dr. Dweck notes, the research mostly refers to petroleum-based oils, such as Vaseline, mineral oil, and baby oil, so coconut oil isn’t likely to predispose you to yeast or bacterial infections.
One thing you should be cautious of with coconut oil lube: condom use. The FDA advises against using any oil-based lube if you’re going to use a condom. “The oil has the potential to disrupt the integrity of a latex condom, which might put you at a higher risk for pregnancy or an STI,” Dr. Dweck says. It’s best to use a backup method of birth control with any oil-based lube to prevent pregnancy, she adds. Or, focus on solo time when you break out the coconut oil.
What to look for in a coconut oil lube
Shopping for lube involves a little bit of trial and error, but it’s ultimately up to personal preference. It’s perfectly fine to use pure coconut oil (as in, unrefined, with no added ingredients) in solid or liquid form, Dr. Dweck says. “This is likely going to be very well-tolerated with minimal side effects,” says Dr. Dweck. Score.
Or, purchase a personal lubricant that has coconut oil as a base ingredient. It may contain a blend of other ingredients, though, Dr. Dweck says, which could be irritating for anyone with sensitive skin.
“Depending on the additional ingredients, there could be a higher risk for infection,” says Dr. Dweck. If you do have super sensitive skin, don’t choose a lube with fragrance, which is basically a mix of mystery chemicals that could be irritating.
While both regular coconut oil and coconut oil-based lubes are both moisturizing and fairly gentle, the sex-specific stuff will have a thinner, lighter consistency and feel a little bit nicer on the skin. Just note, coconut oil-based lubes aren’t condom compatible, either.
Not keen on coconut oil but still want something more ‘natural’? This is one of our faves:
This article was originally published on www.womenshealthmag.com