SEX TOYS – The 5-minute Guide To Materials And Care

SEX TOYS – The 5-minute Guide To Materials And Care

We only scratched the surface by mentioning types of sex toys and furniture.

Today we’ll continue about materials used in sex toy production and about the importance of care.

This is follow up to our last article – an intro to sex toys.

I’ll start of with laying out one of the problems with sex toys.

Right now, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has more than extensive testing and financial requirements in order for sex toys to be classified as medical devices. Because of that, many manufacturers register their toys as novelties, where their listed ingredients do not have to be accurate in chemical composition or percentage of ingredients.
Many toys contain phthalates, which may cause health problems, from simple ones to more complex ones.
That’s why we can’t emphasize enough the importance of doing research and buying a good, quality sex toy.


Not to be mistaken, not all companies out there lie and cheat and go around regulations, some of them produce decent toys and some produce even better toys. It’s just about finding the right one.

Most common materials used are:

  • rubber
  • thermoplastic elastomers (TPE)
  • silicone
  • glass
  • metal

The most used material in sex toy production due to few advantages it has. The most important advantage being price, rubber is often used as a material of choice because of its low price compared to other materials. The second one is that rubber is very flexible so it gives more options when it comes to customizing the looks and size. It is good for people on a tighter budget, but beware, it is where they put phthalates in. Due to production process types used to make rubber, it may happen that your toy has a smell, but after a couple of washes it will wear off.

Use water-based lubricants.

Spices of Lust - sex toy material and care - rubber toy


In basic terms, it is a material somewhere in between plastic and rubber. You’ll recognize this material very easy – it’s usually soft and silky to the touch. Money-wise, products made from TPE are a bit more expensive than rubber ones.

Lubricant of choice should be water-based.

Spices of Lust - sex toy material and care - tpe thermoplastic elastomer toy

Safety champion! Toys made from silicone are the safest toys on market. Some companies use 100% body safe silicone while some don’t. Body safe silicone can be listed as platinum-cured silicone or medical-grade silicone. Sometimes, the toy is made from different material and is later coated with silicone. Also, silicone toys have higher price tag than the last two materials listed, due to the quality of material.

Our suggestion is to use a water-based lubricant.

Spices of Lust - sex toy material and care - medical grade silicone toy


With very good properties, glass is a great choice when producing sex toys. It is body safe, strong, resistant to thermal shock and thermal stress, so you don’t have to be afraid catastrophe will happen while using it. The fact that there are not to many downsides in terms of properties could also affect the price to be higher. Dildos are the most common thing that is made of glass, who not only perform well in terms of material quality but are also very visually appealing. Also, an interesting addition is that you can put glass in warm water or in a fridge for 15 minutes and give yourself a whole new experience.

We don’t have a specific suggestion when it comes to using lubricants to use with glass, as any choice will be good.

Spices of Lust - sex toy material and care - glass sex toy


Two most common metals used are stainless steel and aluminum. Both of them are body safe, but there are differences in weight, where heavier toys made from stainless steel could be a better fit for more experienced users.

Same as glass, you can use any lube or you can warm them up or cool them down. Your only limit is your imagination!

Spices of Lust - sex toy material and care - metal aluminum toy(All photos were taken from google images)


If you read the text above, you may have noticed that we suggest what lubricant to use. It is not crucial that you listen to us, as we all have our preferences, but we have to point out that some types of lubes can speed up some material decay/ wear and cause your toys to go bad/ break sooner.

The important thing to know about the materials I listed above is that some of them are porous and some are not.

Porous materials are materials that can be harder to clean as their surface is full of tiny holes. We do not see these holes with our eyes but are big enough for bacteria to be in.
Porous materials are: rubber, thermoplastic elastomer, bad quality silicone.

Non-porous materials don’t have this tiny, microscopic holes and are easier to clean thus meaning, being less harmful to your body.
Non-porous materials are: glass, stainless steel, aluminum, medical grade silicone

General guideline is that all toys can be cleaned with warm water and unscented anti-bacterial soap, but here are some tips you can also follow depending on the material you use:

  • GLASS – some can be put in a dishwasher, but lower quality glass is better not to be exposed to high temperatures
  • STAINLESS STEEL – can be put in a dishwasher. Some do recommend washing it with a 10% bleach solution, but we wouldn’t do that. You can always wash it with water and soap.
  • SILICONE – can be put in a dishwasher or boiled for 5 minutes.
  • RUBBER – IT IS VERY HARD TO CLEAN IT THOROUGHLY AS BACTERIA CAN BE IN MATERIAL. The smart way is to use a condom with a toy.
  • THERMOPLASTIC ELASTOMERS – clean with warm water and air dry. Use cornstarch in very small amounts to keep them dry and not sticky.


Take good care of your toy as it’s very important for your sexual health and safety. If you do yourself a favor and take a good, or even better, excellent care of your toys, you’ll successful avoid bacterial infections, transmission of STIs or even pregnancy.

Toys can give us(single or plural) so much joy and pleasure and change into our sex lives, but at the same time, they can make our life living hell. Be smart about it!

If you any question about materials, feel free to ask. Do you need help with buying your toy?

We are here, waiting for you to reach out.

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