Trivializing Rape

Finals are over, thank god. This semester was, to understate it, quite rough. As I was gathering my things from my last exam, I overheard two girls as they walked by:

"I feel like I just got raped in the butthole."

Really? Raped in the butthole? I'm sure I hate topology as much as you, but I'd hardly say a stressful final is on the same level as anal rape.

But hey, I get it. I know you didn't mean literal rape. People often use rape to mean "destroy" or "totally annihilate." As in, "we're totally going to rape the other team." And to be fair, it was a really hard exam.

To use the word so carelessly trivializes sexual assault. Nearly 1 in 5 women will experience rape at some point in their lives. It's not something to take lightly or throw around. It affects people you know and care about and can leave lasting scars, physically and emotionally. It's like throwing around the word "retard." Don't.

Personally, I think the worst part of saying rape carelessly is that you're ignoring all the other aspects of actual assault. Everyone heals differently, but for some victims, it can take years just to feel normal again. You get to walk away from that final. You get to forget all about it. It may be funny to you.

Rape isn't funny.

It's just a word. But there are over a million words to choose from. Here's a bunch of synonyms for "destroy". I know what you were trying to say. Next time, just try to say it differently. Again, my GPA may be a joke, but sexual assault isn't.

Picking a Lube

As a followup to my previous post about choosing vibrators, today we're going to talk about picking a lubricant!

"Why should I use a lube?" you may ask. "You're crazy, Reagan." I get that a lot. But in all seriousness, lube is important. I made a list, so you know I'm serious.
  • Makes butt stuff possible
  • Less pain during intercourse (or fingering/masturbation/anything involving penetration) 
  • Lube makes things slicker, and more sensitive 
  • Lube makes things safer

Let's talk about safety for a moment. Vaginal dryness (or just insufficient lubrication) can be a result of hormone changes, irritants, medications, or anxiety. If you're using a condom, dry sex (sex without lubrication), can increase the chance of the condom breaking. Dry sex can also result in small lacerations, or micro-tears, in vaginal or anal tissue, which makes for a much higher risk of STI transmission.

Of course, there's always the possibility of "too much", even with a good thing; things can get a little too slippery. It may take some trial and error to figure out how much you need. Additives in certain lubes can also be irritating, and spermicidal lubes that may contain nonoxynol-9 can actually increase the risk of HPV/HIV transmission. So, you know, avoid those.

Back to the fun stuff. As far as basic lube types go, you've got three main options.

1. Oil Based Lubes
First up, oil. For the sake of argument, let's include any product you may want to slather on your bits that has oil in it, including butter, whipped cream, mineral/vegetable/coconut oil, or petroleum jelly.

While these things can be fun for external play, they should not be used internally; they can prevent the vagina from cleaning itself and trap bacteria. Oil also isn't recommended for anal use; there's a higher risk of infection. Furthermore, oil can coat toys and make it difficult to clean off bacteria, so be careful.

Oil based lubes can be a solution for people who experience irritation with other products because they don't have additives, but remember, never use oil based lubes with condoms. Oils will degrade latex and cause it to break down, so oil based lube is incompatible with barrier protection.

Pros :
  • easily accessible (just check your kitchen)
  • less irritation
  • fun for hand jobs
  • yummy 
  • can't use with latex
  • can lead to infections
  • messy, difficult to clean up
  • don't put whipped cream in your vagina or butt

2. Water Based Lubes

Water-based lubes are awesome and all purpose, they clean up easily and can be safely used internally and with all toys and contraceptions. They do tend to dry out, but they can be revived with more water or saliva, so it's not hard to get going again (I've never actually had an issue with lubes drying out, but I do hear it's a thing that happens).

However, they're water soluble, which means they're not effective in water, so they're kinda useless in the shower/pool/hot tub. Look for one that's paraben free; parabens are linked to a lot of health problems. Some water based lubes (especially flavored ones) also contain glycerin, which can encourage yeast infections.

There's also a wide selection of flavored and sensation lubes that are typically water based. Cooling and warming sensations can be pretty awesome, just try a little bit first to make sure there's no irritation.

Check out sliquid, a water-based lube that's natural and safe.

  • most commonly used
  • safe for internal/toy use
  • washable (don't worry about messing up your sheets)
  • wide selection of flavors and sensations

  • incompatible with underwater activities 
  • can contain parabens/irritants (check the labels, and know what you're allergic to)

3. Silicone Based Lubes
Silicone lubes are another popular choice; they last much longer than water based because they aren't absorbed. They're safe to be used internally and are compatible with showers. Silicone lubes are little more expensive, but you'll use less than you would with water-based because you won't need to reapply, so it evens out. Pink Silicone is a great, natural choice (OhJoy did a glowing review on this one too).

I tried to resist dragging Frozen into this. I really did. Honest. 
Be careful though, silicone lubes cannot go on silicone toys. They'll melt them. Seriously. Silicone silicone reactions. The lube will break down the material of your toy and it'll get gross and fall apart.

Silicone lubes can also be a little tricky to clean up, be sure to use soap and water, and be careful not to get it on sheets. Use them sparingly. 

  • long lasting
  • use in shower
  • good for people with sensitive skin
  • can't use with silicone toys
  • can leave a slick/greasy residue
  • can stain sheets/be difficult to clean
  • most taste bad

That's about it for the basics, but there's always more. Collect lube samples, figure out what you like and what you don't! Go wild, my lovely deviants.