Whether you’re enjoying a sex toy, or a partner (or both), having a good lube on hand is essential. We’re breaking down the best water-based lube options for you, from the best picks for sensitive skin to aesthetically pleasing ones that look great on your bedside table.
But first, why do you need lube? For some people, it helps manage vaginal dryness. For others, it just makes for a smoother, more pleasurable experience during sex or masturbation. It’s also essential for any type of anal play since the body doesn’t produce any natural lubrication from the anus.
There are a few different types of lube you’ll encounter, including silicone-based lubes, oil-based lubes, and water-based lubes. “When you’re shopping for lube, it’s important to ensure it is compatible with the type of activity you have in mind,” says Amanda Pasciucco, an AASECT-certified sex therapist. “For example, use water-based lube for latex condoms.”
Water-based lubricant is one of the more versatile options on the market. You can safely use it with sex toys made from silicone, glass, or metal without the risk of damaging the toy. As Pasciucco notes, water-based lubes are also safe to use with latex condoms, as well as condoms made from other materials like polyurethane and polyisoprene.
Pasciucco also shares that water-based lubes are often a good option for people with sensitive skin. They’re frequently made with soothing hypoallergenic ingredients like aloe vera, and it’s possible to find options that are fragrance-free, paraben-free, and don’t contain glycerin — if any of those ingredients are of concern. Regardless of your skin sensitivity level, it’s always a good idea to do a patch test by rubbing a little bit of the lubricant on your thigh or other skin to see if you have any reactions before you start using it on your most sensitive body parts.
Water-based lubricants also have a feel that’s more similar to the body’s natural lubrication, which isn’t always the case with silicone or oil-based lubes. The last thing to be aware of with water-based lubes is the fact that they can dry out faster than other types of lube. In other words, you’ll just want to keep one of the best water-based lubes listed below handy if you’ve got a marathon session planned with your partner or favorite vibrator.
Our Top Picks:
- Best Overall: Maude Shine Organic Aloe-Based Personal Lubricant, $25
- Best for Sensitive Skin: Sliquid H20 Natural Intimate Lubricant, $25
- Best Natural: Good Clean Love Almost Naked Personal Lubricant,
- Most Affordable: Lovehoney Enjoy Water-Based Lubricant, $17
- Best Plant-Based Lube: Playground Love Sesh Lube,
- Most Versatile: LELO Personal Moisturizer, $30
- Best for Sex Toys: Tracy’s Dog Personal Lubricant, $19
- Best for Anal Sex: Wicked Jelle Water-Based Anal Lubricant,
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