Friday, February 20, 2009

What's Your Condom Lubed In?

I have no idea... do you? When shopping for lubricated condoms I have never seen an ingredient list about what the prophylactic's lube is made of, much like the other ambiguous products such as perfumes & detergents who are not made to disclose their "secret" formulas. For some reason it seems to only matter what the actual condom is made of, since there are known latex allergies and various types of protection come with various risks. Sheep skin protects against pregnancy but not STD's, Latex can cause allergies and rots when any type of oil touches it causing microscopic holes or breaks, and the polyurethane is the alternative to latex but hasn't had as much testing as the former two choices. Then you have these mysterious chemical based lubes on all of them that have who knows what in them?
Correct me if I am wrong (and I want to be corrected) but there doesn't seem to be any unlubricated sheep skin condoms out there for the latex & poly-freak show wary... and I have yet to find any claiming to use organic & allergen free lubes on their packaged goods either. So what are the alternatives?
Use your own lube with an unlubed condom? With much searching through the pages of google I found only one lube company that claims the crown of silky smooth organic lube, that is free of all the common allergens (gluten, dairy etc) & chemical junk that you now have to wonder if is on the mystery slipperies you've been using. YES! That's the name of the company, YES makes organic lubes that are water and oil based -( but don't forget that oil doesn't belong on latex unless you think a bun belongs in the oven or an STD on your ______.)

Things that make you say YES!:
(I am including all the YES product info here, because I think one of the best ways to learn what's in your mystery products is by reading the alternative's claims to what they didn't use.)
1. Certified and guaranteed purity and quality – organically produced wherever possible, as this ensures product integrity and no hidden chemicals carried over from the production processes, such as the recent FDA alert for Diethylene glycol (anti-freeze) in glycerin .

2. A solid pedigree of safety and performance – for example, flax has been cultivated by man for over 6000 years and the ancient Greeks and Romans used it to heal, moisturise and nourish skin.

3. No known skin irritants:
(a)No Menthol / Peppermint oil – skin irritants and can damage mucous membranes
(b)No Grapefruit seed extract
(c)No Glycerin – can be a skin irritant in some people and in concentrated solutions can damage the mucous membranes

4. No natural or synthetic products that have health issues or concerns:
(a)No Parabens – (Parabens, i.e. Methylparaben, are a range of synthetic preservatives that mimic estrogen and are potentially linked to breast cancer)
(b) No Glycerin – A sugar that can feed Candida albicans and so cause a bout of Thrush in women
(c) No Propylene glycol – a penetration enhancer used in cosmetics, as well as lubricants, to “pull” other chemicals into the skin
(d) No L-Arginine – an amino acid that can initiate a Herpes outbreak in people with genital Herpes
(e) No Petroleum by-products such as Mineral Oil (Liquidum Paraffinum), Petrolatum (petroleum jelly), Paraffin oil (lamp oil or premium Kerosine) or Paraffin wax. Two concerns, firstly they coat the skin preventing its normal functions and secondly they are potentially contaminated with impurities linked to cancer or other significant health problems. The EU has restricted the use of Petrolatum in cosmetic manufacture
(f) No Silicone oils such as Dimethicone, Cyclomethicone or Dimethicone Copolyol. Much like Petroleum by-products they coat the skin, not allowing it to breathe. There is so much breast implant (these were / are Silicone oils) side effect information and controversy that we recommend you search for “silicone toxicity” in Google and take a view yourself.

5. Never tested on animals. No animal ingredients. Yes® oil-based contains Bees Wax which is approved by the Vegetarian Society.

6. Only plant based ingredients unless there is no effective or safe natural option

7. Preservation and product cleanliness are critical. We tested all commercially available natural and “natural” preservation systems and found that none were secure, reliable and safe enough to meet our criteria. For instance Grapefruit seed extract is a known eye irritant at low concentrations . If you know of one that works, please let us know. We finally chose a combination of natural and synthetic preservatives for Yes® water-based to deliver the performance required.

8. Grapefruit Seed Extract (also called Citrus seed extract and Citrus grandis). Independent research has shown that Grapefruit Seed Extract’s antimicrobial properties are exclusively due to adulterants: undeclared synthetic chemicals; commercially available preservatives and disinfectants such as Methylparaben. Some of which are classified as poisons (14). Yes® products will never contain Grapefruit Seed Extract.

Yes® water-based ingredients: Organic Aloe Vera, a renowned skin food; organic Flax extract which is particularly beneficial for the mucous membranes and three synergistic plant based gums – Guar, Locust Bean and Xanthan, all of which contribute to the deep velvety texture. Food quality preservatives are included and citric acid to buffer the pH.

Yes® oil-based ingredients: Two rich organic butters – Cocoa butter and Shea butter – more skin food, which impart smoothness and body; two fine emollient oils - sweet almond oil and sunflower oil, both organic, which confer a silky texture and skin moisturising benefits; a little white organic bees wax, and lastly some Vitamin E which as well as benefiting the skin, acts as a preservative."

Reading this list makes me say NO to mystery lube and YES YES YES to something safer for my health! Let's hope Yes organic lube is really living up to the credo they claim. :)
Do you know of any safe, fair trade, chemical free, vegan, gluten free or other heavenly contraceptive and lube?


Mokihana and Pete said...

I never know what gem will rear its head in your blog. Interesting run down, and then at the end the GRAPESEED EXTRACT disclosure was a mind blower! We have and ARE using GSE to clean our fruit and veggies ... have been for YEARS because it was a raw food education 'do it for your good' thing. YES says, never, never. OMIGOD. Out it goes and same goes for any soap with that stuff too. Hmmmm.... where does it end.

Thanks Leslie, LOL Mokihana

linda said...

This site was once posted somewhere as a potential resource:

The Oko Box said...

Glad you enjoyed... are you using grapeseed or grapefruit seed extract, cause i think the two are different?
I never knew that about grapefruit seed extract either, but any time i have taken it for autoimmune related candida i feel like total shit and my stomach will hurt horrible. I have heard lots of stuff about cleaning veggies with bleach drops, and other stuff that sounds totally not healthy - i really think warm water and a good scrub does the trick. We gotta eat a little dirt to build up our immune system right!? ;)

Linda- Thanks for the link! Love the name of that site. :)

Anonymous said...

The best thing to clean your fruits, veggies, produce is alkaline KANGEN water. Takes off everything-even pesticides. Email me if you want more info at or you can just go watch