Sex Toy Materials – The Good and Bad

Sex Toy Materials – The Good and Bad

Sex toy materials the good and bad: the do’s and do not’s of sex toys

When it comes to your body be careful what you put inside it! This does not just extend to fingers, willies and other body parts, but to all the sex toys you use as well, some sex toys are badly made, and often some of the materials used contain potentially dangerous chemicals. So we thought it would be good to explain to you the materials we use in most of our products and explain what you should be aware before you purchase sex toys.  We want to make you aware that in some cases badly made and hard to sterilize sex toys could cause illness and injury.

Laws and regulations

In such an industry as ours we find it baffling, but contrary to what you would like to expect, no adult toy specific regulation exists, but fall under a broad range of consumer product safety regulations.  Faulty sex toys can be recalled by government bodies if consumers report faulty or un-safe products. This is similar in the US and the EU and other European countries also.

So we as an adult toy retailer are committed to selling only body-safe materials like pure silicone, which is a body-safe substance used for other medical decides like breast implants and menstrual cups. so the first thing to do when purchasing any sex toy is to look what it is made from, and check if that material is body safe!

Know your sex toy materials the good and the bad

Checking the material and how it is cleaned prior to purchasing is key, some materials can be penetrated by bacteria, viruses and fungus, often such materials are very difficult to satisfactorily sanitise fully, and can often leave residue even after through cleaning.  Often infections like yeast infections and even STDs (if the toy is shared with partners) can grow in the material.  Some sex toys in particular are very difficult to sanitize because they are so porous, Jelly sex toys are the primary materials to avoid and are prone to these issues. The NHS warn that un-sanitized sex toys can pass on certain STDs inclusive of herpes, hepatitis, HIV and syphilis!

If you are not sure what the product is made from then do not buy the product, and we recommend purchasing from ethical retailers only selling sex toys that are deemed body-safe. Other materials have also been marked as safe by the majority of ethical adult retailers, such as thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) and thermoplastic rubber (TPR), as although porous, they can be easily cleaned and are used for certain products like male masturbators.  At Kandid we only sell insertable sex toys made from silicone, hard ABS plastics and use Thermo plastic rubber for our male masturbator.  But for all toys it is generally recommended not to share them.

What to avoid

Low-quality low-cost sex toys like single use bullets and cock rings are often marketed as novelty items, most often made from low quality jelly rubber or polyvinyl chloride.  it is often very difficult to know the full makeup of these toys, and just how harmful they really are is a wide debate. But what we do know is that if inserted into the body they can be harmful, as some studies have found that some Jelly and polyvinyl chloride toys contain phthalates (an additional chemical added to rubber for flexibility). These chemicals are not good at all, leaking out of toys, affecting the body’s hormone balance and linked to certain cancers.  In fact some variants are in fact banned in the EU and the US for use in children’s toys, which makes us wonder why they are allowed in sex toys at all!

But sadly our market is a tad saturated with sex toys made from materials which sellers are unable to account for in terms of their composition and chemicals used in the manufacturing process.  So, if you or your friends have any stories of toys that have melted, sweated oils or even given off strong odours we would like to hear about it, as it is an area we intend to look into more closely.

If it’s too small don’t put it in

Some sex toys are not made from insertion and you should always read the label, ensure all anal sex toys you purchase in particular have a wide or flared base or handle which will prevent it from becoming lose into the anus.  As the muscles in the anus clench naturally, anything you insert into the anus could potentially get stuck inside, so always ensure sex toys you use are designed with anal safety in mind, or you might be finding yourself on an unwanted trip to A&E!

When buying sex toys, especially cheap ones it is very important to know that there is a very real danger of sex toys getting stuck or lost inside you! And there are many horror stories out there of A&E trips and painful embarrassing efforts to remove such sex toys.

IPX ratings, why they matter and what waterproof actually means.

The IPX system exists to evaluate how resistant products are to various environmental conditions and does not just indicate the products level of water protection. The IP (Ingress Protection numbers are written as IPXX, where the letters XX indicate the numbers that should be present, the first X represents the solid, dust and particle resistance and the second, the liquid resistance.

The list below is how the IPX system is usually represented.

  • IPX0 – No protection
  • IPX1 – Protects from dripping water
  • IPX2 – Protects from vertically dripping water
  • IPX3 – Protects from sprays up to 60°
  • IPX4 – Protects from splashing water, no matter the direction
  • IPX5 – Protects from water jets in any direction
  • IPX6 – Protects from powerful water jets
  • IPX7 – Protects in water up to 3 feet (1 meter)
  • IPX8 – Protects when immersed in water over 3 feet

So when considering your toy collection, consider what level of protection you will be subjecting your sex toys too and if they are appropriately safe for the uses and situations you plan on using them in!  For the products with the higher rating levels will be able to withstand the elements for longer periods of time without risk to health or product failure.

Why we care what’s in our sex toys 

Building Kandid was a steep learning curve and with a serious lack of laws and regulations clearly in the UK and EU governing the sale of adult toys specifically, it has become very clear that greater guidance should be introduced to the industry.  Without all-encompassing education about the materials going into our bodies and their production and disposal, it is hard for consumers to make informed decisions about what toys to use and what is safe. 

Adult sex toys should always be used with care, as the impact of a bad, painful or difficult experience may turn users off of adult sex toys altogether, leading to self-criticism, anxiety and be damaging to one’s mental health. This is why we always advocate reading and looking into both how to use sex toy products, product safety and speaking to partners and being open and honest when it comes to using sex toys!

We commit to using only body safe materials, should you have any questions or have any topics which you would like to see discussed please reach out to our team! Know your materials the good and the bad for sex toys