The posts in the series are designed for adults only!
You may have realized, at some point, that the plastics, jellies, and rubbers used to make your favorite sex toys are not environmentally friendly. They are not made with renewable or sustainable products, many cannot be recycled, and their production creates harmful waste. But did you know that your toys can themselves be toxic? Forget the fact that once you toss them they will sit in a landfill until Armageddon. Forget that Bambi’s mom is dying of cancer because she drank from a stream next to the plastic factory that manufactured your dildo. Think about this for a moment. Many soft plastics are made malleable by the introduction of phthalates, chemicals that give your sex toys a soft, squishy feel. Unfortunately, phthalates are also fairly unstable, un-bonded molecules that can break free and cause reproductive problems (mainly in males, although also in pregnant or nursing females and their babies). Yikes. Although there has not been enough testing to confirm that the level of toxins in your toys will cause harm (results have been derived from lab tests in which large doses of phthalates were administered to animals, and also from cases concerning exposure to phthalates from hospital instruments), do you really want to chance exposing yourself to toxins from something that is supposed to bring you pleasure?
Glass Sex Toy
Luckily, there is good news for those who not only wish to practice “safe” sex, but also want to rid the world of harmful materials and the pollutants and waste they engender; the wide world of green sex toys is open to all. From glass toys to wood toys to recycled rubber, you can get all of your boudoir accoutrements in green. You can also get energy-savers such as solar-powered sex toys that require no batteries or electricity. Now, you may have some concerns. Will a glass vibrator crack under pressure? Will wood cause splinters? Is recycled rubber, well, clean? And what if your sun-filled toys run out of steam in the darkest hours of the night? You need not fear; all of these concerns have been addressed by manufacturers in the pursuit of perfection.
Eco-friendly sex toys are durable, resilient, and probably safer than the plastic and jelly models on the market. Most are coated in a waterproof material that protects both you and the product for years of use. Many also have replaceable parts in case something comes loose. And as for toys that eschew batteries and electricity, consider getting some that can continue to please even when they run out of juice, or look into hand-crank models (yes, you can!). And you may think that there are not a lot of options when it comes to eco-friendly bedroom fun, but you can find a green counterpart for virtually any toy you can think of. And it doesn’t get much greener than a cucumber, so don’t forget that many toys don’t require any manufacturing at all (and can be grown in your backyard).
As for what to do about your old toys, you can’t really throw them in a recycling bin. However, there are companies that will allow you to send in decommissioned (and sterilized) toys to be recycled. Some, like Scarlet Girl, will dismantle and recycle everything they can (including sending plastics and rubbers to be ground and reused in consumer products). Sex Toy Recycling Program offers the same service (including battery disposal) and also offers incentives in the way of affiliate gift cards for every package received. And Sex Toy Recycling takes it a step further by creating 95% PCW toys made from your old ones…and gives you a $5 voucher towards your next purchase. Double green!
So if you’re worried about the threat of phthalates, or you just don’t want your pleasure to equal planetary pain, look into the many eco-friendly options in sex toys. Bringing a little fun and excitement to your intimate spaces doesn’t have to expand your carbon footprint if you simply do a little research, use your common sense, and remember to recycle, renew, and reuse.
And speaking of ways to spice up your bedroom, why not add a massage at the end of the evening. Diana Tenjes enjoys writing about the benefits of massage for her massage website Portable Massage Tables.