At first blush, “green sex” doesn’t necessarily sound like a good thing, at least from Auntie’s point of view. The phrase reminds Auntie of the ghastly colored discharge oozing from the penis of a sailor she dated many, many years ago. Or even worse, her first clumsy forays in back of Daddy’s Datsun 510 station wagon. Green sex is of course all of these things, but it is oh so much more! Because as it turns out, the things some of us (OK, all of us) have been pleasuring ourselves with—personal lubricants, rubber dongs, bondage gear—may be doing us more harm than good.
Consider the case of K-Y jelly. It’s the best-selling personal lubricant in the world, the one most recommended by doctors, and Auntie’s personal favorite. It also contains parabens, synthetic preservatives used in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries, which have been indirectly linked to breast cancer when fed to rats. What might happen when you lube up your naughty bits with this stuff? According to The Ecologist magazine, “Mucous membranes are the moist layer of semi-permeable tissue lining the mouth, nose, eyes, vagina and anus. Because they do not have the protective layer found on the surface of the outer skin, mucous membranes can be damaged, irritated and penetrated by synthetic chemicals much more easily. Rectal and vaginal absorption is, generally speaking, many times greater than oral absorption.”
Have you ever wondered why jelly dongs are so flexible? Auntie has. Turn out they’re loaded with endocrine-disrupting phthalates. The substance has already been banned in toys for children, and Greenpeace has also proposed banning its use in sex toys. Although no such ban is in place, sex toy manufacturers have stepped up to the plate, offering dildos, butt plugs and whatnot in PVC-free silicone, elastomer, glass and stainless steel. There’s also a wide selection of natural lubricants available. For example, Earth Erotics, at www.eartherotics.com, offers a variety of safe, natural sex toys and lube. Just Google “green sex” and see what comes up. Auntie thinks it’s wise to choose your sex toys carefully, but thinks the jury’s still out on K-Y. That’s why you’ll occasionally find her in the feminine-products aisle at Safeway, picking up a large tube of her trusted stalwart.