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Difference between water-based and silicone-based lubricant:

1) waterbased lube

Water-based lubricant is the most common type of lubricant out there. It is soluble in water, meaning it’s easy to wash off from clothes or your skin. Its popularity is partly due to it being compatible with most sex toys, which are made of silicone. This makes water-based lube the best option for solo-play with toys. You can use all your favourite toys again and again, without their quality deteriorating. One downside of water-based lube is that you can’t use it for sex play that involves water. That means anything in the bath, shower or pool, unfortunately.

Applying it during sex was easy, and the nozzle can be opened and closed with one hand, which helps. Whether you’re playing alone or playing with your partner, about a spoonful of lube is enough to get started. But, depending on how long you keep going you will need to add more. This is where the one-handed nozzle came into effect. Despite having to stop occasionally to “top up”, we only required a small amount to reactivate the lube that was already applied beforehand.

What we enjoyed:

  • It was easy to apply.
  • Once you’re done, it’s very easy to wash off.
  • There is no taste to the lube, which means we don’t have to watch where we put our hands.
  • It doesn’t stain the sheets.
  • You can use it with latex rubber condoms.

What we didn’t enjoy

  • You have to regularly reapply more lube, so one tube can go quite fast.
  • You can’t use it in the shower.
  • After a while, it gets sticky on your skin. So not great for massages.

2) silicone-based lube

Silicone-based lubricant is unlike water-based lube in that it doesn’t contain water. This makes them fundamentally different. The most notable difference you will feel right away is that silicone-based lube isn’t absorbed by your skin and doesn’t evaporate. This makes it extremely slick and long-lasting, as in very long-lasting. Once it’s on it’s very difficult to get off.

This does help though if you want a long night of fun. Even if it’s just masturbation. You could go on and on. We found that about a tablespoon’s worth of silicone lube was enough for one session. We can imagine keeping one 150 ml bottle for at least 5 times longer than the water-based lube. And like the water-based lube bottle, it was easy to apply with just one hand.

Unfortunately, you can’t use silicone-based lube with most of your sex toys, since they’re also made from silicone. If you do, the lube could end up damaging them, making them look bad and possibly even dangerous. This limited our sex play to just the two of us, with no help from any cool gadgets. It’s also not that easy to get the lube out of your sheets, so going wild with it during a hot night might not end well for the next day’s washing. We ended up putting towels all over the bed, just to be sure.

What we enjoyed

  • A small amount lasted a long time. It also felt smooth, smoother than the water-based lube.
  • The texture on our skin was a lot sexier. It feels like silk on your body.
  • It can be also used as massage oils.
  • We could enjoy some of our silicone sex toys as well, like dildos.
  • You can use it with a condom.

What we didn’t enjoy

  • It was quite difficult to get off after we were done. A lot of scrubbing was needed.
  • It has a bitter taste, so you have to be extra careful when playing with your sex toys.
  • We had to be careful not to get any on our sheets.


Each type of lubricant has its purpose. The merits of both outweigh the negatives in that it’s better to have one than to have none. Generally, you should go for water-based lube if you want something that’s easy to clean and that you can use with all your sex toys. Although, if you have toys that are made from other material, like glass or metal, you can still use silicone lubricant. In terms of longevity, silicone lube is your best option, but be prepared to spend some time washing it off.

Posted in: Sexual Wellbeing