The SLICK Mission

Ingredients Matter

Lube is awesome! Not only can it make sex feel better, it can help you have safer sex. What’s not so awesome is the number of people who’ve experienced burning & irritation and are using products that may increase their risk of infection.

Our mission is to help people who need or prefer to avoid certain ingredients find gentle, effective sexual lubricants & personal moisturizers.

Welcome to the Rabbit Hole!

Shopping for Lubricants is Harder Than You Think

Maybe you’re allergic or have sensitive skin. Maybe you’re trying to reduce the number or types of ingredients you use on your body & in your home.

Maybe you’re trying to get pregnant or are expecting, Maybe you’re dealing with dryness and need products that are safe for frequent use.

Maybe you’re prone to infections and can’t risk upsetting your microflora. Maybe you need to be sure a product is condom & toy safe.

There’s lots of things that can get you thinking about ingredients – welcome to the rabbit hole! You’re now entering a world where you’ll face several challenges.

The first has to do with ingredient research in general. Internet extremism and blindly copy-pasted content will lead you to such negative & contradictory information, you may never want to put any product on your body ever again. It’s THAT scary.

Another challenge relates to comparison shopping. I expect retail outlets to have limited choices. I understand there are smaller companies making great products that you have to go out of your way to find. Both are true and add to the challenge. What really surprised me is how hard it is to comparison shop for lubricants on larger platforms like Amazon – something they normally dominate at.

Looking closer, it’s not hard to see it’s because the sexuality & health categories are flooded with dropshippers who aren’t invested in the quality of their products or in consumer information – it skews everything. Bad product descriptions, missing information, and low-quality reviews make it hard for even the best search engines & filters to do their job.

And the final challenge is that, while personal lubricants are a $2.2 billion industry and some lubricants are pre-market approved by the FDA as class 2 medical devices (here & here), the industry is mostly sefl-regulating.

All large, ambiguous markets suffer from their share of sub-par products & false advertising, but it’s especially prevalent in health & sex related industries.

Mission Goals

At the heart of SLICK.SEXY is the idea that information is power for both consumers & manufacturers. We are not the ingredient police or your doctor, and our recommendations should only be a small part of the information you consider.

That being true, we have spent the last several years compiling an original database of lubricant manufacturers, brands, formulas, and ingredient research. And we’re constantly trying to figure out the best way to make what we’ve learned useful for other people. To that end, our biggest goals are:

Above everything else, we want to encourage you to request information and equip you with good questions. It only takes a moment to use a manufacturer or seller’s contact form – you may not get the info you’re after, but you’ll be adding to an overall demand that smart businesses won’t ignore.

Pull the weeds – To date we’ve cataloged 420+ products available in the USA. Based on an initial screening focused primarily on ingredients, we recommend approximately 100 of these for people with ingredient concerns.

We’re constantly reviewing ingredient & medical research to understand what makes a lube worth recommending. Our suggestions are based solely on-this understanding – we aren’t paid to promote one lubricant over another.

Gather the info – Is it sticky? Is it safe for my toys? Will it cause burning & irritation? Does it taste or smell funny? Is it reasonably priced? Is it available in larger sizes?

With 25+ key attributes listed consistently across products, you’re sure to find the answers you need. Want more info? Use the Comments on any page to ask a question or send us an email – we’re happy to help!

Make it easy – We’ve turned all that information into filters & tags so its fast & easy to find your perfect one.

Use ‘Add Favorite’ to keep track of your best candidates. And when you’re ready to buy, we help you find the site with the best deal.

The Review Process

While our review process can’t be called scientific, we do approach each review in a standardized way. Our goal is to consistently record quantifiable information like ingredients & condom compatibility, plus harder to quantify things like lasting power.

Preliminary – As we catalog a lubricant, it goes through a screening focused primarily on ingredients, but also on manufacturer info & customer reviews. Products that pass this screening are added to this site as pending reviews and we do recommend these products.

As a new site, most reviews are at this stage. Even so, a preliminary review contains more information than many product pages we’ve seen. And because this site has been designed specifically for lubricants & ingredients, our tags & filters are way more useful than those on sites like Amazon.

Pending – Next we contact the manufacturer to ensure they are responsive to consumer inquires, to ask clarifying questions, and to request samples. If samples aren’t provided, we purchase the lubricant retail. Once we’ve obtained a lubricant, we verify the labeling information & update our review if needed.

Full reviews – The final step is evaluating a lubricant for hard-to-quantify information such as feel & lasting power. We have a methodical, consistent approach for ‘bench marking’ and combine those results with the feedback of 2-3 independent ‘real life’ reviewers.

We feel this helps both consumers & manufactures by better aligning expectations. For example, one frustrating aspect of Amazon can be seen in negative reviews for lower-lasting, water-based formulas.

A better alignment would be that yes, some formulas are inherently lower-lasting because they omit certain ingredients for those who are sensitive or prefer it.

We aren’t paid to promote one lubricant over another. We are primarily (but not exclusively) Amazon affiliates. We rely on our visitors and subscribers to help keep our reviews unbiased & this site free of advertising. We appreciate your support and have a monthly giveaway to say thank you.

Lubricants We Do Not Review

Because our mission is focused on ingredients, there are some formulas we don’t review or recommend for vaginal & anal sex. We use the word ‘formula’ broadly – there are individual products that are safe & gentle within every category and we do list them as we find them.

Ghost manufactures – We attempt to contact every manufacturer the way any consumer might – usually via the company’s contact form or published email address. If we don’t hear back, it’s a red flag and we can’t recommend doing business with them.

Glycerin-based lubricants – Glycerin is great for the skin, but it’s notoriously sticky. Glycerin-based formulas are also the most likely to have a high osmolality.

As a category, we recommend avoiding glycerin-based lubricants for vaginal & anal sex unless it’s known to be a ‘low osmolality’ or ‘isotonic’ formula.

Flavored & scented lubricants – The vast majority are glycerin-based and eliminated for that reason. Flavor (aroma) is an ambiguous ingredient that’s difficult to research. Broadly, flavors / aromas are known irritants. We generally don’t recommend these ingredients for vaginal or anal sex.

We recommend limiting these products to external play only – a category we aren’t reviewing at this time, but may in the future.

Sensation lubricants – These are products that cause a cool, warm, or tingling feeling. Here again, most are glycerin-based and eliminated for this reason. These formulas use ingredients like menthol that are known to be irritating.

We recommend limiting these products to external play only – a category we aren’t reviewing at this time, but may in the future.

Anal numbing lubricants – Anal sex should not hurt & pain is how your body communicates stop! Numb the pain and you risk hurting yourself more than you realize at the time. We can’t recommend any product with this kind of risk.

Origins

My name is Lisa Burton and a few years ago I went lubricant shopping for the first time. It was a hugely frustrating experience – incomplete product information and poor website design made it hard to comparison shop. And when the lubricants I tried left me irritated, it took a lot of effort to figure out why and to understand the alternatives.

I’m an information architect and web developer, which added to the frustration. When I come across sites that don’t work well or find gaps in consumer education, I see wasted opportunity that I instinctively want to fix.

At the same time I was Googling “burning hoo-ha”, I was also muttering about how there needs to be a better way and figuring out what that might look like – a kind of geeky brain exercise I do a lot of.

To put out the fire in my pants, I did what any good information architect would do – I made a lube spreadsheet! I figured out the problem, found my solution, and discovered there’s a lot to know about lubricants.

Not long after, a good friend had her first baby, was nursing, and found herself in need of lubricant. She asked if I could recommend one – that was the moment I knew SLICK.SEXY had to exist.