Sex toys are amazing and something everybody can benefit from. Sex toys can bring some spice to long-term partnered sex and they’re just as fab for solo play. But if you’re using sex toys on yourself or especially if you’re sharing them with another person, it’s imperative you know how to clean them. Dirty toys can cause nasty infections, and sharing improperly cleaned toys with a partner can actually transmit STIs and STDs between you and bae. Yikes!
So – how do you clean sex toys? Don’t worry – it’s not too complicated.
Find out what material your toy is made of. Check the box and/or manual it came with, but if you’ve already tossed those in the recycling you can look up your toy online. If your toy is non-motorized and made of silicone, pyrex or stainless steel, it can be boiled in water for a few minutes.
Leather toys can usually just be wiped down with soap and water. If your leather toy comes in contact with any bodily fluids, consider wiping it down with a 70% isopropyl rubbing alcohol solution to disinfect it.
If your toy looks and feels like real skin, then it’s probably made out of cyberskin (also known as “softskin” or “ultraskin”) which is uber porous, so be sure to only use a bit of mild, unscented soap and warm water to clean it. (Side note: if your toy is made out of a porous material like cyberskin, jelly rubber, or hard plastic, it will be impossible to completely disinfect so if you’re sharing, be sure to wrap that sh*t in a condom. Additionally, try to steer clear of jelly rubber toys as they can potentially contain harmful materials like phthalates.
Pick the right cleaner. As luxe as your Malin + Goetz Cannabis hand soap is, don’t use it to clean your sex toys. Perfumed soaps can leave a residue on the toy which can irritate genitals when you use it again. Avoid antibacterial soaps for the same reason. Sex toy cleaning sprays and wipes are an option, because they’re specifically formulated to gently and effectively clean sex toys without damaging them, but regular mild hand soap will also do the trick.
To soak or not to soak? I probably don’t need to tell you this, but don’t submerge any motorized toys. That means if your toy is battery powered or has a power cord, never submerge it in water. Clean motorized toys with a touch of mild soap and a clean, damp cloth. If your toy is made out of a durable material like silicone, pyrex, stainless steel or stone and is not motorized, then you should be submerging it in water to get the best clean. Pop those babies in boiling water for a few minutes for best results.
Side note – again, I shouldn’t have to tell you this but please don’t stick your sex toys in the dishwasher. Show them a little TLC and hand wash!
So, how often do I have to do this? Ideally, you should clean your sex toy before and after use. If you can, clean your toys before you store them – you don’t want bodily fluids drying on them, and then sitting in a drawer or collecting dust and cat hair sitting on your bedside table. (Yuck). It might sound like a lot of work, but just think – you spent good money on those toys, so protect your investment. And even more importantly you don’t want bacteria popping up on them!
What if I forget to do it right away? It’s ideal to clean a toy right after you use it, especially if it’s made of porous material. If you’re worried it’ll ruin the mood or harsh your afterglow to get up and clean a toy, its ok to wait a few minutes. (But you should be getting up to pee after sex anyways! Why not kill two birds with one stone?)
Drying toys. Before putting toys away or putting them to good use, make sure they’re completely dry. Use a paper towel or a completely clean cloth towel, and store them safely. Many toys come with a storage bag or box – don’t throw these out! They protect toys from bacteria and dust. Now you’re all done, your toys are put away, and you’re ready for a bomb experience the next time!
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