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Lubricant Research


As part of our campaign for more knowledge and better lubricants, Mail & Female commissioned a qualitative study. Nearly 1000 people aged 20 to 60 years responded to our call for research into their knowledge and experiences with lubricant.

What is remarkable is that more than half of the respondents identify themselves as male. This is striking for us, and especially good news. This means that not only women are looking for a safe, positive environment for sexuality, men are also participating. We are very happy with that!

Hanni Jagtman


We suspect that there is a connection between physical or sexual complaints and the use of lubricant . From the contact with our customers we conclude that people are not well enough informed about the (correct) use of lubricant. One of the underlying questions of our research is therefore: to what extent are people informed about lubricants?

Finally, we were of course also curious about people's satisfaction with the lubricants they use.


There are roughly three types of lubricant: silicone, water and oil based. Hundreds of variants can be found on these three species. Whether or not ecologically responsible and/or vagina-friendly. Some have a flavor or come with added pungent ingredients and others come with scents and colors. Read more about these different types of lubricant in the tabs below.

  • Types of lubricant
  • Research results, harmful substances and complaints
  • Sex toys and lubricants


The silicone-based lubricant contains silicone that is not harmful to the body. The molecules are too large to penetrate the mucous membrane and skin, so that the pores are not clogged. The uterus can also easily remove this remedy, so it does not linger as is often the case with oil.


The advantage of silicone-based lubricant is that it glides for a very long time. The silicone is not absorbed by the skin and forms a thin smooth layer on the skin. This is a must for anal sex, and a plus for a wonderful body massage . In addition, it can even be used under water, as the product does not contain water and does not dissolve in water; ideal for sex in the hot tub or pool! In addition, the agent is tasteless and odorless. It is safe to use with condoms, and great for an erotic massage! Silicone gel is very pure in ingredients and has practically no shelf life limit; so no parabens etc.


Silicone lubricant has the major disadvantage that it is not compatible with all sex toys. This applies to all toys made of silicone, unless stated otherwise. It can also be experienced as annoying that it stays smooth for so long. Men sometimes find that the feeling – during penetration – feels less good. Silicone can also stain your sheets; especially with silk and satin sheets. This gel is often a bit more expensive, but very economical in use. Silicone gel also remains slippery on a surface such as a bath or a floor. You can usually remove this well with dish soap or lemon juice.


These lubricants do not stain and are safe to use with latex and all types of sex and sex toys. Water is a body's own substance that is easily absorbed by the skin. You then do not have the disadvantage as described with silicone lubricant. A water-based lubricant is easy to remove.


Because a water-based lubricant is absorbed by the skin, it loses the sliding effect faster. You then have to supplement in the meantime if you are experiencing problems with this. Another disadvantage is that preservatives always have to be added, because the shelf life is limited. Not all of these additives are vagina-friendly. If you suffer from vaginal complaints, always check the lubricant you use. There may be something in there that is causing the symptoms. At Mail & Female we like to sell the'Pink' brand, with products without the addition of parabens and glycerine, and with extra attention for the delicate vaginal flora.


Oil-based lubricant (including baby oil or vegetable oil) is strongly discouraged. Oil is too greasy for the vagina and uterus, it closes the pores and forms a breeding ground for bacteria. Oil affects rubber material – latex – which also applies to condoms! Oil can be used for anal sex and massage. It also glides nicely for masturbation, although we prefer to recommend silicone lubricant for this.


results of our lubricant research

Read some insights and results of the research below:
• It has become clear that many people use lubricant during sex.
• A good 75% of the respondents use or want to use a lubricant.
• Lubricant is mainly used to make sex more fun, smoother and easier.
• Another frequently stated reason is to make better use of condoms and sex toys.
• Lubricants are also used to prevent more 'serious' problems, such as vaginismus, vaginal dryness due to menopause and the skin condition sclerosis.

The fact that lubricant is important and is received positively is reflected in the satisfaction. On average, the lubricants of different brands get a 7 or higher.
20% indicate that their lubricant will continue to slide for an entire lovemaking session . We pay attention to lubricant quality that stays smooth longer if desired.


Some of the respondents think the reliability of the brand is important and they like to listen to the saleswoman's advice when purchasing. The base of the lubricant (silicone or water) is also important, about 30 percent make a choice for a specific lubricant based on the base. Yet we see from this figure that 70% do not look closely at the basis of their lubricants. And let there be a 'risk' in that.


What do we actually put between our legs? A vagina is sensitive and a number of substances can seriously disrupt the natural balance. Now take the ingredient glycerin. This is a form of sugar, used to give a lubricant a sweet taste. Very nice to use for oral sex, but this substance can also cause nasty infections, candida and fungi in the vagina.

There are also lubricants with certain contraceptives, such as Nonoxynol-9. These lubricants claim to prevent pregnancies, but ultimately there is too little N9 in lubricant to provide real protection. In addition, this substance causes small tears in the membranes (a type of skin cells) of the vaginal and anus walls. The chance of an STD only increases due to the cracks. More research is currently being done into the possible harmfulness of lubricant. Unfortunately, too little is currently known to make conclusive statements about membranes and lubricants. But there is no advantage whatsoever when using this lubricant, on the contrary!


Finally, there is another annoying substance. This is commonly found in shampoos and body products, but also in lubricants. This substance is called paraben and is a preservative. Although there is still a debate about this, research indicates that this substance may be linked to cancer. It is certain that it is harmful to the environment. It is better to be on the safe side and prefer to use 'paraben-free' products.


15% of the women surveyed mention complaints they experienced when using a lubricant. The most common complaints are vaginal itching and burning. Fungal infections, allergic reactions, thinness and unpleasant odors are also associated with lubricant. Water-based lubricant causes the most complaints, it turns out.

We explain the low percentage of 15% by the high percentage of men in this study and because it is difficult to link the complaints to lubricant. After all, there are so many other factors that can cause vaginal complaints.


Besides the harmful substances such as N9 and glycerin, there is another potential risk. Our research shows that 75% of the Dutch do not take into account the combination of the materials in the lubricant and the sex toy used. Half of the respondents do not use a special lubricant for their sex toys and 25% do not see the need. Almost half have no idea what material their dildo is made of and 30% have no idea which two substances (lube/sex toy) they used together. And 25% of people who use a silicone sex toy also use a silicone lubricant that is not specifically intended to be combined with a silicone lubricant.


The silicone lubricant can affect the toy made of silicone. And eventually the silicone material of your vibrator will become porous. TRIPLEGLIDE is an exception because the silicone used is of a 'coarse' type, which cannot penetrate the silicone skin of a product. TRIPLEGLIDE lubricant therefore feels a bit thicker - a bit like oil - but there is no oil in it.
Come to our store for good advice and to feel the differences for yourself.


Information is the creed at Mail & Female. We need to make sure people know what they are using. In this way, sex can be a positive part of your life, also in the long term. We have been guaranteeing this for thirty years, and we will continue to do so.

For more than 30 years, Mail & Female has been the place for positive attitudes and innovation regarding sex and love. It is also the place where you will find good sex products for every sexuality and gender. In order to continue to guarantee that quality, we always want to be aware of the sex products we offer.

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