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Safer Sex Toy Shopping

Concerns for People with Allergies and Other Sensitivities

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Trust Your Experience, Ignore Marketing Tricks

People who live with MCS and reduced immune systems usually know just how to shop and take care of their needs. It is crucial to know what is actually in the product you are using. This can be a problem with retail sex stores, where they often make claims and offer inaccurate information about products out of their own ignorance or a desire to sell you something more expensive. For example, be wary of claims about products being “all natural” or “the most natural”. More often than not the store people don't even know what is meant by this.

Little Information Available

When it comes to plain rubber sex toys, in almost all cases we don't know what they are made of. There has never been any clinical study of plain rubber sex toys and the manufacturers are not willing to disclose what is in their products. If you do not have a latex allergy the cheapest way to explore with sex toys is to use a latex condom on any toy you buy.

Latex Allergies

Latex allergy is fairly common and latex is found in most condoms and gloves, and many dildos, vibrators, and sensation toys. Never assume a toy is latex free. While a lot of mass manufactured dildos are not made from latex, they are often poured into moulds that have come into contact with latex, in factories where latex is being used. Usually the one exception to this is silicone dildos. Most of the silicone manufacturers only work with silicone rubber and thus can guarantee that there will be no latex in their products. It is still worth asking if you have a severe allergy.

If you have a latex allergy, there are alternatives for both toys and safer sex gear. There are now three kinds of non-latex male condoms and one non-latex female condom being manufactured. All these products are made from polyurethane and while they come with their own limitations (they cost about $2.00 per condom) they offer options for people with severe latex allergies.

Demand More Information, Know the Contents

Always ask about the ingredient list for lubricants, creams and oils. Most of the products have many ingredients, some of which may cause an allergic reaction or direct chemical irritation.

Avoid Scented Toys, Ask Before You Buy

Unfortunately more and more toys designed for penetration (whether they vibrate or not) are being made with a scented rubber. Manufacturers are doing this to hide the unpleasant smell of the less expensive rubbers they use. But the scent is sometimes strong and can induce a reaction. Again, when buying toys, it's best to ask if the toy is scented. If the person doesn't know, insist on being able to open the package and smell the toy before you buy it. Also, some people will react to the dyes in toys for penetration. If you don't have a latex allergy the easiest way to deal with all these concerns is to use condoms on all your sex toys.

More Information

If you want more information on this topic a great place to start your search is ImmuneWeb. It's a website for people with fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, multiple chemical sensitivities and more.
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