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Anal sex toys are a wonderful way to enhance your sexual pleasure and experiment with new ways to use the anal area. But they’re also a breeding ground for bacteria and yeast infections, which is why it’s crucial to keep your anal toys clean and safe.
The best way to clean your sex toy is to follow the instructions that come with it. For example, if you’re using a silicone dildo or anal beads, you can clean them with soap and water and then use isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol to kill off any remaining bacteria.
If you’re using a metal butt plug or other anal toy that has a lot of electrical parts, it’s especially important to wash it thoroughly after each use. This can prevent the onset of infections like herpes and HIV that may be transmitted by sharing anal toys, says Laurie Mintz, a Ph.D. and sex educator who works with the brand LELO(Opens in a new tab).
Another method is to run your sex toys through a dishwasher or a washing machine, if they’re made from waterproof materials. But be sure to avoid adding detergent or soap, as these can leave a residue that could later be transferred to your genitals.
There are also a number of specially-formulated sex toy cleaners on the market. These typically come in sprays, foams, gels or wipes and work by disinfecting the anal toy with a special formula that’s then removed by rinsing it.
Some sex toy cleaners even have UV light capabilities that help destroy bacteria. They’re a little more expensive than a typical cleaning solution, but they can help to ensure that your sex toy stays sterile.
For example, you can try this sex toy cleaner from Sliquid(Opens in a new tab) that has been shown to be effective against many types of bacteria and fungi. It can also help to deodorize sex toys, so they won’t smell bad after use.
Other sex toy cleaning products include a bleach-based solution that can be sprayed directly on your anal toy, or an antibacterial spray that has been formulated to kill off microorganisms. These can be helpful for keeping your sex toy smelling fresh and preventing the growth of bacteria or yeast infections, according to Lisa Finn, a sex educator who works with sex toy shop Babeland(Opens in a new tab).
To clean your sex toy with bleach, mix about 5 tablespoons of bleach with a gallon of water. This is especially helpful if your anal toy isn’t waterproof, as you can submerge it for a few minutes in the bleach solution, and rinse it off afterward.
Alternatively, you can make a solution of baking soda and water to use on your sex toy. This will remove any odors, but it may be hard to get rid of some stains that aren’t absorbed by the toy.
Some sex toy companies, like Le Wand and b-Vibe, offer cleaning solutions that come in a box that you place your anal toys in before placing them in the dishwasher or washing machine. Some also include an indicator that lets you know when your anal toy is clean, and when it’s time to replace it.