Buying a sex toy can be intimidating. There is always uncertainty when buying from a new company: it can be difficult to know whether the materials are high quality, whether they can safely come into contact with your most sensitive areas and to what types of wear and tear you can expect. But I have a shortcut to help you make the most informed sex toy purchases: the iPhone rule.
The iPhone is not designed to be in direct, prolonged contact with anyone's genitals, and I advise against trying to use it as a sex toy. But if you did, it would probably be fine, and that's because of its composition: glass, metal, and, if you have a case, silicone. Yes, there are many other materials that go into making a phone, and not all cases are silicone, but I've found it's a good way to remember what to look for in a sex toy . Naturally, all of these materials have different qualities, but glass, metal, and silicone are the three big things you look for when buying a sex toy.
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Good old glass
It may not be the first material that comes to mind when you think of sex toys, but it's a proven option for solid, non-vibrating sex toys like glass dildos and plastic butt plugs. glass. When purchasing a glass sex toy, make sure the packaging or website explicitly states that it is made of borosilicate glass. Glass sex toys are safe to use with any type of lubricant and simply need to be hand washed with soap and water to keep them clean.
This is the same type of durable glass used to make scientific equipment and is completely non-porous. It's important to be non-porous for sex toys because if there are no pores, bacteria has nowhere to hide when you wash them. If a sex toy is porous, it's probably single-use, because you'll never do it. Really be able to clean it and it will discolor and degrade over time. If you don't know what type of glass a sex toy is made of, don't buy it. This goes triple for glass toys, because if they are poorly made, they can be potentially dangerous! If the company's packaging or website is indirect or unclear, it's usually time to move on. There are a few exceptions, though, so if a particular toy catches your eye, it never hurts to email the company directly: most have “Contact Us” sections for such occasions.
The toy we recommend above didn't have the exact information we were looking for on its website, but Kindred Black co-founder Alice Wells confirmed to us that each of her glass sex toys is hand blown from of borosilicate glass in the United States.
Hard, cold metal
Metal sex toys are a little less common than silicone or plastic ones, but like glass, they are incredibly durable and safe to use with any type of lube. Unlike glass, some metal toys can offer safe internal vibration options. What you're looking for in a metal sex toy is similar to what you're looking for in a glass toy: clarity on what it's made of and how.
Metal sex toys should be made from surgical steel, also called 316 or 316L stainless steel. This type of steel is a non-porous material that has been tested for biocompatibility and is often used in medical applications like surgical pins or even piercings. The parts of the body it will come into contact with are important in determining whether a material is safe. It should be noted that surgical steel can potentially corrode over time when implanted in certain parts of the body; 316 stainless steel can see some significant corrosion in solutions with a pH of 1.58 or less. Fortunately vaginal pH generally fluctuates between 3.8 and 5, Rectal pH between 7 and 8 years old, and Salivary pH between 6.3 and 7.3. All of this means that there is a near-zero chance that a surgical stainless steel sex toy will be corroded by coming into contact with any of the usual places a sex toy might end up, even if you use it. every day.
It is a proven material and designed to last. Just like glass, you will need to scrub it with soap and water to clean it.
Silicone is the most used material for sex toys, but also the most difficult to identify. Almost all sex toy manufacturers use different words to describe the silicone they use. I've seen terms body-safe, medical-grade, body-friendly, hypoallergenic, and tons more, and I've looked at each one.
There are a few that are backed by a solid body of research, as well as common testing standards: platinum cured silicone And food grade silicone. Food grade is a label regulated by the FDA and it means that the silicone has been tested to ensure that it does not leach harmful chemicals into food. Platinum Cured Silicone is safer than standard (peroxide-cured) silicone because the chemicals used to make silicone are more completely consumed during the process, leaving nothing behind that can leach into your body. This is why platinum-cured silicones are surprisingly odorless.
Medical grade is a label you'll see quite often, but if so not supported by the specific regulatory body or the testing standard used to determine that this is a medical grade product, this is puzzling to me Why this has not been disclosed.
What if there is no information?
You can usually contact the company you're interested in and ask them what the sex toy is made of. If they don't respond or there's no way to get this information, you should probably avoid the product. No matter how cool the toy is, if you don't know what it's made of, it's because someone in the supply chain decided not to tell you, and it's a wake-up call. Sex toys should be treated like medical devices, and as a potential buyer, you deserve specific, clear, and robust information about what you're putting into your body.