Guide to eco-friendly sex

by Christina Dawn Morgan

October 6, 2014

**The following content contains mature material.** Like all of our other choices in consumerist society, the love that we make the sorts of physical expressions that we share with people and any accessories that we might use along the way can either make love or war with our bodies and the planet. So, how can you make your sex life Life-friendly? Well, long ago, Greenpeace touched-in on this touchy subject. But, now were giving you an update to our eco-friendly sex tip list. Here comes the eco-friendly sex tip ride of your life!

Protection

Im starting here because using protection against sexually transmitted diseases (STDS) and pregnancy is the leading concern for most folks engaging in sex. There are a plethora of options out there for protecting you and your lover(s) from both of these things. Heres a pretty comprehensive guide from Bedsider that describes and weighs-out the pros and cons of many of these options, and heres some of our observations and eco-friendly tips for shopping for the stars among these protection methods: Intrauterine Devices (IUDs) The IUD isthe most effective at preventing pregnancy and relieves the planet from packaging pollution of other methods of protection. Although this method involves aforeign object implanted into a woman'suterus for maybe several years at a time, itrocks for the environment. There are both hormone-free and hormonal versions of the IUD. Learn more about IUDs Condoms Male and female condoms are one of the most reliable methods for protecting against STDs and pregnancy. Additionally, condoms seem superior than using hormone-based birth control methods, because the pill, the patch, thering, and various hormonal counterparts can have deleterious effects on the body. In terms of planetary health, however,no one really knows how long it takes for a condom to biodegrade and many contain varieties harmful chemicals. Companies are often not transparent about their ingredients. So, wise choices when using condoms involve avoiding harmful chemicals and excessive packaging, and maybe even stepping things up a notch by making sure that your condoms are animal friendly (Vegan). Pro Tip: The best male condom companies that Ive found are: The L condom company, GLYDE, Sir Richards, and Sustain condoms. See what fits for you! Most chemical-free (earth & body friendly) condoms are made from sustainably-sourced latex. However, Lambskin condoms are sometimes argued to be more biodegradable and provide heightened sensation compared with latex condoms. However, they are not vegan -yep, a lamb had to die for that condom- and do not protect from STDs. Whatever your condom choice: DO NOT FLUSH CONDOMS DOWN THE TOILET. Theycan wreak havoc on sewage systems and aquatic life.They belong in the trash to biodegrade. Natural Methods of birth control My personal favorite tactics for preventing pregnancy within long-term relationships are Natural Family Planning and the more sophisticated (& probably more reliable) Fertility Awareness Methods (FAMs).These methods keep women in-tunewith the natural rhythms of your body and your fertility. If using these methods, couples canenjoy natural-naked as your momma made ya- sex. That means lots of unique stimulation and ZERO wrappers, hormones, or other crap to pollute your body or the planet. Despite that serious perk, these methods are not as effective at preventing pregnancy and cannot prevent STDs. Use these methods if you can or dare, but be very diligent in your tracking, and mindful about your partners. In closing on this section, heres another groups list of eco-friendly birth control products and tips. Let us know if the comments below if you have birth control and protection tips of your own!

Accessories

Toys Just like childrens toys, adult toys can have their own dirty secrets. Toxins, poor environmental considerations, and even unfair labor conditions can be part of the sex toy trade just like the kids toy trade. Greenpeace has issued warnings about toxins in sex toys over the years, and our guidance in terms of avoiding bodily and environmental harm while exploring sex toys would fall much in line with the advice that weve provided for parents looking for eco-friendly childrens toys. Heres some additional input for finding green sex toys and why these choices are important- some gadgets are even solar powered! By the way, some of those great vegan condom companies that we mentioned earlier have models with tools for extra built-in stimulation including Sir Richards Condom Company. Lingerie If you like sexy clothes during sex, then look for products that have been Detoxed or are made from sustainable materials (check out our Green Tips for Going Back to School under Clothes for tips on finding these). Lubrication Eek. This one can get nasty. Lubricants can contain horrible, often petroleum-based chemicals. You dont want those on your intimate parts or in your digestive track, do you?! No way! Heres some of the specific ingredients to look-out for and why **Hint: If you wouldnt want to eat it, then- well, you get it. Some healthy alternatives include: Creating great lubrication from the inside out through excellent nutrition, and using natural elements like coconut oil, aloe vera, or some kind of organic, vegan manufactured lubricant if you need one. Although fantastic in terms of feel and health, natural oils can destroy condoms, so be aware! All that being said, human saliva can go a long way here. (Even Dr. Oz recommends it!)

Where to buy the eco-friendly Accessories like these?

Here's one company (As You Like It) that sellsbody-positive, eco-conscious, and gender-inclusive toys, lubes, lingerie, and more!

Mood-setters

Lighting To save energy, turn the lights off or rely on the natural light. If you want to use candles, consider a beeswax or other form of sustainable candle, which is paraffin free, free of GMOs, and uses sustainably-sourced oils. Look out for palm oil as an ingredient in candles, and only purchase if you can verify the source as being free from deforestation. Aphrodisiacs I hate to tell ya, but the effects of most long-purported aphrodisiacs are myths. The most effective aphrodisiacs are elements that are healthy for the body any way, like healthy foods that promote abundant blood flow and optimal nervous system functioning. Heres some more about how most alleged aphrodisiacs flopandeat healthy foods! Lots of fruits and veggies, great sleep, plenty of exercise is your recipe for a natural aphrodisiac. Youll feel great and have an amazing sex drive. Then youll be asking: Who needs aphrodisiacs?! ;) In closing Makin sweet love is a blessing of being human. When making choices about your sex life, look out for your own and your partners best interests with regards to physical and emotional health and family planning. In terms of sex accessories, if it looks/tastes/smells horrible, it probably is! Chemicals = lame, and a healthy body makes all the chemicals youll need for amazing sex. Oh, and one last earth-friendly tip: If you bath or shower when or after you make love, conserve water by sharing the shower! Howdo you eco-friendly your sex life? Let us know!

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