Best lube for postpartum sex?
November 14, 2008 4:57 PM   Subscribe

What is the best lube for postpartum sex?

I'm a little past two months postpartum with my first child, and looking forward to having a sex life again. Everything I've read has said "use lots of lube postpartum!" but I'm not sure what to use. I've used typical drugstore stuff pre-baby (KY, Astroglide), and I didn't like them very much (Astroglide was better than KY, but not by much).

Three factors that may change the answer to this question:

1. I'm exclusively breastfeeding, and plan to continue doing so for at least another 6-7 months.

2. I'm just starting a new birth control pill (Alesse, so it's low-dose)

3. I had an episiotomy and third-degree lacerations during the birth so I was "ripped and snipped" from stem to stern (sorry for the TMI visuals). I'm mostly healed, but won't be trying anything until I feel a little better about how the cut is healing - the tearing seems to be okay.

I know that items #1 and #2 both contribute to dryness which is why lube is recommended. Items #3 just makes me nervous to try anything - I don't want to undo all the healing I've already done.

I checked out this question, and it addresses some of my issue, but it doesn't cover the postpartum-specific stuff.

I realize that postpartum sex will be different and less-than-perfect for the first little while. I just want to try and take all the steps I can to make it go as well as possible, so any other tips are welcome. Thanks for any advice you are willing to give about such a personal matter.
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

See if you can get the baby out of the house for a couple of hours if you can't be sure he or she will sleep for a long enough time. You want to be as relaxed as possible, and potentially waking baby will not accomplish that. (A friend of mine left her daughter with her parents and said she and her husband wanted to do some Christmas shopping together.) But be prepared that the "planned time" might not be "THE time." It's okay -- opportunity will present itself again! Have a glass of wine, go really slowly, and make sure both you and your partner aren't putting any pressure on yourselves. It's rather like the first time all over again. I've never needed any lube, but pacing was key.

Good luck!
posted by chihiro at 5:10 PM on November 14, 2008

taking it slow, like first time slow
posted by debbie_ann at 5:36 PM on November 14, 2008

Everything I've read has said "use lots of lube postpartum!"

A lot of the advice floating out there in books &c is dreadful. All women are magically healed at exactly six weeks post-partum, and then you simply "inebriate and lubricate"! Yeah, fuckoff.

Liquid Silk is the best out there, I think. Beware ob-gyns quick to push estrogen creams on you if you're not sure it's necessary.

However, I post largely to mention that I at 15mo post-partum (and nursing) have no need for lube, sort of the opposite. I had a similarly lousy delivery and would not even have thought of anything related to sex at 6 or 8 weeks postpartum. Being wary of one-size-fits-all obstetrical advice is a good idea. Friends have mentioned sex being "unthinkable for six months and painful for a year," so don't feel freakish if it just doesn't work for some time yet.
posted by kmennie at 5:46 PM on November 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

Ask your doctor for a prescription for Premarin (estrogen cream). I did not do this with my first child, and for months there was not enough lube in the world to feel ok. With my second child, I got some, and it made a HUGE difference. I didn't even need lube when I was using it.
posted by Princess Pea at 5:47 PM on November 14, 2008

I've been breastfeeding for a year and sometimes lube is helpful. Try Liquid Silk. Take everything sloooowwwwlyyyy.
posted by mistsandrain at 5:47 PM on November 14, 2008

Thirding or whatever-ing that the best lube is relaxation, time to go slow, and an open mind as to what exactly constitutes "sex" the first few times. As a fellow breastfeeder, I'd have called a vague feeling of intimacy, and no impulse to snarl if someone touched me, a good day. Good luck! I'm due with #2 in a few months and nervous all over again :-)
posted by cocoagirl at 6:05 PM on November 14, 2008 [1 favorite]

Hetereosexual couples are not their primary market, but I liked Boy Butter when I was post-partum and breastfeeding. It was soft and smooth like putting on lotion, but it lasted for a long time and even smells nice.

Just be prepared for your mental readiness and physical readiness to be out of sync a bit. I know there were times when I was sure I wanted sex as we climbed into bed, only to have the feeling peter out after a few minutes. Also, my husband and I aren't the type who would want milk flowing during sex, so I usually kept a bra on. Not terribly erotic.
posted by saffry at 6:17 PM on November 14, 2008

haven't had a baby, but i third the recommendation for liquid silk! it's pretty much ask metafilter's favorite lube.
posted by lia at 6:47 PM on November 14, 2008

I can't speak to the postpartum issue, but as far as quality lubricants go, give Sliquid H20 a try. I recently switched to it after trying lots of others when I realized that I was actually mildly allergic to Astroglide. This stuff is completely non-irritating, has no smell or flavor, and lasts for ages.
posted by you're a kitty! at 6:53 PM on November 15, 2008

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