A good lube is one of those simple things that can go a long way toward improving your sex life. The only issue? There are now more options out there than ever before, including a litany of natural lubes. So, how is one supposed to choose? Well, first and foremost, you want to make sure you’re choosing a lube that won’t cause yeast infections or irritation.

“Any lubricant that’s oil-based has the potential to increase the risk for yeast infections,” explains Dr. Nicole Sparks, an OB-GYN in Atlanta. (FYI that includes petroleum jelly, which contains mineral oil, as well as plant-based oils such as coconut and avocado.) She cites a study published in Obstetrics and Gynecology that found that 44 percent of women who reported using oils in the vagina tested positive for yeast infections, as opposed to 5 percent of women who did not.

Other common culprits? Scents and flavorings in lubes, which can also disrupt the delicate pH balance of your vagina and potentially cause a yeast infection, Dr. Sparks adds, who recommends opting for water- or silicone-based lubes. But back to the natural point of things.

What exactly is natural lube?

As is the case for many other ‘clean’ categories, there is no set definition or criteria defining non-toxic, all natural lube for sex. Generally speaking, non-toxic or natural lubes tend to be water- or oil-based, since silicones are a no-no in the non-toxic world. Many are often free of parabens, ingredients that are good to avoid if you’re prone to vaginal irritation, says Dr. Sparks. They’re also more likely to contain a very minimal ingredient list.

In short, if you want to avoid yeast infections, your best bet is to stick with water-based or silicone-based lubes; avoid oil-based ones, even if they are natural. (It’s worth noting that oil-based ones can also damage latex condoms.) And regardless of the lube you choose, when you apply it, do so right before sex, applying either a small amount into your vagina or onto your partner’s fingers or penis.

That being said, if you want to cut back on chemicals in your personal care routine and avoid applying potentially unsafe ingredients to sensitive areas like the vagina or anus, a water-based, natural option the way to go. Ahead, seven great natural lube alternatives worth trying.

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The Best Natural Lubes to Try

best natural lubricants

Lola Personal Lubricant ($15;

This option relies on organic aloe leaf juice instead of plain old water, and is free of fragrance as well as glycerin, both of which Dr. Sparks say can up the likelihood of irritation. (The formula is also pH-balanced for optimal vaginal health.) Plus, it comes in an easy-to-use bottle with a one-click pump.

best natural lubes

Maude Shine Organic ($25;

100% natural and organic, this is another aloe-based formula that’s also free of glycerin and parabens. It’s ultra-hydrating and rinses away cleanly, and has a moisturizing rather than sticky feel; it can also be used with sex toys.

best sex lubes

Nécessaire The Sex Gel ($20;

This brand makes some of our favorite bath and body products, so it’s no surprise that their lube is just as good and comes in equally chic, minimalistic packaging. In similar news, the water-based option includes hyaluronic acid, a moisturizing and soothing ingredient you’re more likely to find in a skincare serum than a vaginal lube.

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best natural lubes

Coconu Water Based Lubricant ($25;

This doubles as both a lube and a vaginal moisturizer; to use it as the latter, Dr. Sparks suggests using it routinely two to three days per week and not just during sex. It contains just six ingredients, all of which are 100% natural, and is hypoallergenic and completely edible, too.

best natural lube

Good Clean Love BioNude Ultra Sensitive Personal Lubricant ($11;

This water-based pick relies on hydroxyethylcellulose, a plant-based material that’s hypoallergenic. It’s free of fragrance, flavors, glycerin, and parabens, and can be used with latex condoms and sex toys.

best natural lubes

Love Wellness Sex Stuff Personal Lubricant ($20;

Aloe is the star of the show here as well, paired with a variety of plant-based extracts for extra hydration. It’s super slippery and has the added benefit of being easily reactivated—simply spray it with a little bit of water once it starts to dry out on the skin.

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best natural lubes

Sliquid Organics Natural Gel ($24;

Despite the fact that this is aloe-based, like many other options on this list, it’s distinct in its addition of extra agar agar, a natural thickening ingredient. It gives this a much thicker, gel-like consistency than the others, but still without any tacky or sticky feel. Cruelty-free and vegan-friendly, it even comes in recyclable packaging.

best natural lubes

Dame Alu Aloe Lube ($18;

Dame is a company known for their innovative sex toys, developed based on feedback from real people, and this natural lube was designed to complement the use of condoms and toys. It’s water-based and made from all natural ingredients, all of which are listed on the website with their benefits. This includes hydrating hyaluronic acid, aloe leaf, oat kernel and linseed extract, as well as green tea, hemp and quinoa to reduce inflammation; mushroom extracts promotes blood flow to the sensitive area.

best natural lubes

Überlube Natural Luxury Lubricant ($28;

Uberlube is made with silicone, giving it a slightly thicker texture that provides longer-lasting lubrication during sex. It also contains vitamin E for added hydration and glide. Free of fragrance, flavor, parabens, and alcohol, this non-toxic lube is latex-safe and dissolves naturally without harboring yeast or bacteria or affecting pH levels. Fun fact: It is also used in OBGYN practices around the country.

best natural lubes

Natural Lube DIY

You want to be extremely cautious of the items you use in and around the vagina. Avoid anything with petroleum or mineral oil as a base, including baby oil and petroleum jelly. You should also steer clear of refined cooking oils like canola and concentrated essential oils.

A good choice if you are going the DIY route is alcohol-free aloe vera; because it is water-based, it’s safe to use with condoms, and it has natural hydrating and anti-inflammatory properties. Another popular DIY lubricant, especially for women experience menopause or chronic vaginal dryness, is virgin coconut oil, thanks to it’s silky-smooth feel and staying power. (However, as noted before, if you are prone to yeast infections or irritation, you’ll want to avoid plant-based oils like coconut oil altogether.)

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