Having worked with natural birth control methods for the past fourteen years, we know that besides them being viable, effective methods, they appeal to eco-conscientious people and people concerned about which substances they put in their bodies. And as one thing leads to another (*ahem*), other products associated with our sex lives have come to our attention. So in recognition of Earth Day, let’s take a peek at some options and raise our sense of responsibility to a new level. Let’s green up our sex lives!
Here are four things to think about for an eco-conscious and body-safe sex life:
Did you know there was such a thing as vegan condoms? Fair trade? Cruelty free? Yes, indeed, there is a new wave of eco-friendly condom brands now available. The Swedish brand, RFSU, was the first vegan condom introduced in U.S. and is available through the Ozone Condom Shop. There are American brands now, too, such as Sustain and Sir Richard’s. You can purchase through their websites or at select natural products stores.
How are these condoms different than your run-of-the-mill drug-store condom?
- • They are vegan, not compounded with animal- or dairy by-products (casein), which are common in conventional condoms.
• They are not tested on animals.
• They are made of rubber from fair trade companies and sustainably harvested sources.
Bonus: most of these companies have a social-good component, in which they partner with or donate to programs in need. (Pictured: Caryn Thompson, O!Zone owner visiting RFSU factory in Sweden.)
For goodness sake, be nice to your tender parts! Things to think about when choosing a personal lubricant:
• Generally consider water- or aloe-based lubricants.
• Keep away from ingredients that may irritate or even cause breakdown of internal linings or encourage yeast infection, such as parabens and petrochemicals. Glycerin may also not be appropriate for women susceptible to yeast infections.
• Oils may be good for external play, but are not intended for vaginal sex or to be used with condoms.
• Silicone lubes are inert and usually hypoallergenic and last longer than water-based lubricants. They may be desired in instances, such as in hot tubs, for anal sex, or for women experiencing dryness due to menopause, but are not intended to be used with condoms or silicone sex toys, and may not be optimal for all women for vaginal sex.
(Pictured: Anastasia Harris, Good Clean Love at Natural Products Expo)
3. Sex Toys
• Choose non-porous materials, such as silicone, that do not absorb moisture or harbor germs.
• Cleaning – use mild, natural cleansers that will not leave a harmful residue that could irritate sensitive body parts
4. Post-play Clean Up
• Again, be gentle with yourself. Choose mild cleansers, not harsh ones like commercial deodorant soaps. Diva Wash is a good option, originally designed to be used with the silicone Diva Cup, it is also a gentle body wash that can be used on sensitive body parts as well as silicone sex toys.
• If you’re on the go and can’t shower, gentle body wipes are a good alternative.
So think about sustainability on Earth Day, and enjoy yourself! ;-)
(Examples of eco-friendly products for greening up your sex life.)
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