Sex

Listen up folks! This is how you should be cleaning your sex toys

…and how often you need to do it.

By Katie Stow
how to clean sex toy

Everyone wants to keep their sex toys squeaky clean and hygienic, and it's actually really easy with the right technique and cleaning products.

We're gonna break down what you need to do, from how often you need to clean it, to where you need to store your toys after you’ve washed them. Basically, you've just signed on to the Cosmo class of ‘Sex Toy Cleaning 101’!

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Why do I need to clean my sex toys?

The first thing you need to know is that you really, really, really need to keep your sex toys clean. Even if things didn’t get particularly messing during your sesh, your sex toy is exposed to a lot of bacteria and bodily fluids, so you need to wipe all that off and give the toy a scrub frequently.

Perhaps you haven’t used your dildo in a while and it's just been chilling in your bedside table, waiting for some love? You still need to clean it. It'll have been gathering dust and dirt while it's been abandoned in your drawer, and you don’t want to put that grime inside of you, guuurl.

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How often do I need to clean my sex toys?

To be safe, and to make sure you're keeping things as hygienic as possible, you really need to clean your sex toy before, and after, every single use.

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How do I clean my sex toy?

Cleaning your little friend is actually relatively simple. The only things you need for the cleaning process are hot water, a good quality sex toy cleaner and a clean dry towel or kitchen roll.

Here are the steps you need to follow to scrub up your sex toy:

  1. First of all, give your toys a quick rinse and then spray them with a dedicated sex toy cleaner.
  2. Leave it for 30 seconds or so.
  3. Then clean any stubborn areas (such as ridges or nodules) carefully before rinsing all the cleaner off with warm water.
  4. To dry, you can either leave your toy to air dry on sheets of clean kitchen roll, or speed up the process by rubbing them down with a clean towel.

By cleaning thoroughly and drying your toys completely, you’ll prevent dust and bacteria build up and keep them looking, feeling and — dare we say it — smelling like new.

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Where should I store my sex toys?

Sex toys are made to be safe for internal bodily use, but they can actually be quite reactive when put next to similar or opposing materials — so you need to be careful!

If you mix your sex toys (particularly silicone, rubber, latex, realistic feel and jelly sex toys) you may soon discover that they start to look melted or slightly misshapen. This is because they aren’t happy with where you are leaving them.

When they’re dry, make sure you store your toys properly. Some toys come with storage bags, so make sure you don’t throw them away and store them properly when you aren’t using them. If they haven’t come with a bag, you can buy ones for your sex toy to keep them safe until they come out to play again.

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In case that was all too much to take in, here are seven simple to-dos and not-to-dos (direct from Lovehoney) for you. Stick by these and you’ll have the cleanest sex toys in town!

The Dos and Don’ts of looking after your sex toys

DO clean your toys before and after use – they can pick up bacteria whilst they are being stored, so you want to make sure they’re clean before they go inside your body. Cleaning them after use is a given.

DO use a sex toy cleaner for extra peace of mind – soap can leave a residue.

DO remove any batteries and close the battery compartments tightly before cleaning, so you don’t shock yourself mid-scrub.

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DO leave your sex toys to air dry thoroughly (laid on kitchen paper is ideal), or dry with a clean towel.

DON'T put your sex toys away before they are totally dry.

DON'T leave your sex toys on a radiator or near a heater to dry — they will get all melty if you do.

DON'T store your newly-cleaned toys together — use the bag that they came with, buy specially made ones, or use shoe boxes or socks.