Category Archives: Articles and Information

The many benefits of silicone sex toys

Want a sex toy that is not as hard as a rock, is non-porous, hypoallergenic, easy to clean, holds up well over time, can be sterilized, and warms to body temperature semi quickly?

Your looking for a 100% (or close to it) silicone sex toy.

Silicones are inert, synthetic compounds which are completely heat-resistant up to 250°F and can withstand sterilization at temperatures past 350°F easily.
Silicone is water-resistant and has the ability to repel water and form watertight seals.
Silicone is resistant to oxygen, ozone and UV light making it have a very long shelf life compared to most soft rubber sex toys.
Unlike many other soft sex toy materials silicone is free of phthalates so you need not concern yourself over that issue.

My favorite soft toys are all made of 100% silicone.
The biggest reason for that is because I share my toys.
When it comes to softer toys, only silicone may be cleaned and sterilized so easily.

Basic cleaning:
Wash with soap and water and let air dry. (It doesn’t get any more simple than that)

Sterilization:
How I do it…
Boil for 5 to 10 minutes on high and then run it through your dishwasher. (Easy)

If you have a silicone toy that can’t be boiled because the silicone can’t be separated from the vibrator part of the toy you may use isopropyl rubbing alcohol, or bleach to clean your toy.
Please note:
1) Rubbing alcohol is not a sterilization agent. It will disinfect to some extent only.
2) Chlorine bleach is a liquid sterilizing agent.
Diluted to 1/10 your basic household bleach kills off most everything and is considered an affective way of sterilization.

If you use bleach on your sex toys remember that you must wash them thoroughly afterwards with soap and water.

NOTE:
A “silicone sex toy” is not the same thing as a “100% silicone sex toy.”
Many manufactures use silicone in their products to make them last longer and clean up easier while still using various rubber mixes as part of the composition.
These mixed toys may not stand up to the high temperatures of 100% silicone toys and may be damaged by soaking in bleach solutions.
It should also be noted when considering silicone/rubber mixes that the manufactures of such products are under no obligation to show the material makeup and should be treated as if they are jelly rubber sex toys and not silicone when it comes to sharing of the toys and possible allergic reactions.

Silicone sex toys may vary in density so if you are not a lover of soft toys you may still enjoy the benefits of a silicone sex toy.
Silicone can be made very hard though most silicone toys are of the softer variety. They are never as hard as a true plastic however and always have a bit of give to them which is a plus because even the hardest silicone toys are less likely to break.

You may be wondering why all sex toys are not made of silicone if it is so great.
There are a three main reasons.
Besides the obvious personal preferences many people may have for toys made of hard plastics, glass, stone, etc…
Silicone is not as low-cost to work with as other materials that pliable sex toys are made from.
PVC (polyvinyl chloride) is a low-cost material that manufacturers can make toys from and sell for close to the same prices as silicone products.
Lower costs and higher profits rule the decision-making process of these manufactures.
The next big reason is that silicone based lubricants are the lubes of choice for many people and silicone-based lubricants are usually not recommended for use with sex toys that are made from silicone because they dissolve the surface and ruin the toy. (Read your labels when choosing what lubricants to try with your silicone sex toys)
Lastly we get back to cost – this time on the consumers end.
When looking at two similar sex toys and one is labeled for instance “jelly rubber” while the other is labeled “100% silicone” it is hard to pay more for what appears to be a very similar product  if  not informed of the differences.
Most of the time the person seeking a sex toy has no clue about what the differences are in material makeup.

As I said in the beginning… all my favorite softer toys are silicone toys.
They are my favorites because they last, they carry vibrations well, they can be safely shared, and I don’t have to worry about any adverse health effects from using them.

In my opinion it is well worth spending the extra few dollars to have those benefits.

Does that mean I have given up using toys made of all the various other rubber/plastic mixtures?
Not a chance. I enjoy my non silicone and silicone/rubber combination toys very much.
I just wish they held up a little better and I was able to easily share them as I do with my 100% silicone toys.

This article was written by Miranda.
It is Miranda’s personal viewpoint.

Should you care if your toy is phthalate Free?

When reading sex toy reviewsyou will often see the term “Phthalate Free.”
Most reputable manufactures of sexual aids do not produce products with phthalates or at least label their products well enough to let consumers know what they are getting.
Most reputable large retailers of sex toys don’t carry products with phthalates or offer information as to what toys do contain phthalate esters.
In general this means that if you are a sex toy lover and like to read reviews,  then purchase your toys through the recommended retailers that the reviewers are working with you will be pretty safe from phthalates.

So what is the big deal?

Phthalates (pronounced “thay-lates” in the US and “thall-ates” in other places) are esters of phthalic acid and are mainly used as plasticizers to increase flexibility, transparency and durability in in plastics.
They are used primarily to soften PVC products. (polyvinyl chloride)
Jelly rubber is one of the big culprits here.
Jelly rubber sex toys are extremely popular because they are lower in cost than many other toys, pleasing to touch, and are often semi transparent which is good for visual appeal.

The word “phthalate” derives from phthalic acid.
Because phthalate plasticizers do not chemically bind to PVC they easily leach and evaporate into food or the atmosphere. As the plastics age and break down, the release of phthalates accelerates.
Only the low-molecular-weight phthalates such as DEP (Diethyl phthalate), DBP (Dibutyl phthalate), BBzP (Benzyl butyl phthalate)may be dermally absorbed.
Exposure to phthalates can be through direct contact of products containing these esters.
Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate and Diisononyl phthalate (DINP)are the most commonly used phthalate plasticizers for sex toys. These phthalate plasticizers can be absorbed easily through the mouth, anus, and vagina. In Europe the use of these phthalate plasticizers are banned, but in other places (including the USA) manufacturers are free to produce products containing these plasticizers.
Most companies have voluntarily stopped using these esters of phthalic acid in producing their products, but not all.

What are the dangers you face when using a sex toythat isn’t “Phthalate Free?”
Nobody really knows yet.
It is suspected that at certain levels phthalate plasticizers can cause hormonal disruption in humans and may lead to liver, lung, and kidney damage among other things.
Multiple studies have shown that high doses change hormone levels and cause birth defects.
REFERENCE: Survey and health assesment of chemicals substances in sex toys from Danish Environmental Protection Agency.
Though research suggests phthalates have a toxic effect on humans it has not proven to what extent or at what levels.

It is not possible to be “Phthalate Free” in the modern world.
Phthalates are used in most PVC formulations with no labeling requirements so consumers can be aware.
Phthalates are used in medicines as inactive ingredients.
Vinyl floors, siding, PVC pipes, car seats, electronic casings, pleather (plastic leather) are all huge contributors to contact with phthalates.
You will come in contact and you have been exposed.

Should you care then about phthalates when it comes to your sex toys?

In the end it all comes down to making choices.
Phthalates in your sex toys are certainly less harmful than say smoking cigarettes or eating foods with high levels of Sodium Nitrate.

For myself – Better safe than sorry is the way I figure it.

This article was written by Miranda.
It is Miranda’s personal viewpoint.