Are you ready? Wet and ready? In this podcast episode we debunk the myths about vaginal wetness, arousal and female engorgement. Get ready to pull apart wetness, arousal, sexual excitation and other important facets of female sexuality (and other vulva owners and those who love them!)
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Transcript of Podcast Episode on Wet and Ready: Debunking Myths About Vaginal Wetness and Arousal
Chris Rose: 00:01 Hi welcome to Speaking of Sex with the Pleasure Mechanics. I’m Chris.
Charlotte Rose: 00:06 I’m Charlotte.
Chris Rose: 00:07 We are the pleasure mechanics. And on this podcast we have soulful yet explicit conversations about every facet of human sexuality. Come on over to PleasureMechanics.com where you will find our complete podcast archive. And while you are there, go to PleasureMechanics.com/free and sign up for our free online course to get started implementing our proven strategies into your erotic landscape. That’s PleasureMechanics.com/free. On today’s episode we are going to be talking about vaginal wetness, wet and ready myths, all of the myths around vaginal lubrication, and what arousal means in terms of wetness. We are going to dive into the pools of vulva waters. Before we do I want to thank our sponsor for this episode, LubeLife. LubeLife offers Amazon.com’s best selling lubricants. Go to Amazon.com and search #LubeLife to find a great value on a great new bottle of lube for your bedside table. Use the code 20mechanics for 20% off your order, or use the links provided in the show notes page.
Chris Rose: 01:28 All right, we are going to be talking about the myths of wet and ready. Wet and ready meaning all of the ideas and myths surrounding the idea of female arousal. Female meaning people with vulvas right. So we’re going to be talking about vulvas and vaginas, and the people that have them. And one shortcut for that is females or women. So the myths around female arousal and wetness. This idea that if she is turned on the pussy will be wet and that is somehow a barometer or an indicator of arousal let alone consent. So this kind of is the parallel myth to the he’s erect, therefore must be aroused myth. And we’ve talked about that in other episodes, we’ll continue to talk about that one. These kind of very false myths about what arousal looks like in different bodies. So we’re going to be talking about vaginal wetness, lubrication, the kind of more anatomical biological truths about the different fluids that come out of vulvas, vaginas, and urethras. And what we need to know about that, how to kind of manage it with a little bit more honesty and passion. And yeah, kind of debunk some myths, install some new knowledge and dive into the wonderful gushing waters of the vulva, and pussy, and yoni, and vage, vagayjay.
Charlotte Rose: 03:16 Whatever you call it.
Chris Rose: 03:19 What do you call it? What’s your favorite word?
Charlotte Rose: 03:21 I really struggle with this sadly. I feel like I don’t have a word any longer that I really love. Which feels like a big gap obviously in linguistic joys of talking about …
Chris Rose: 03:38 Isn’t that sad that we have so many beautiful words for so many beautiful things but so many of us don’t have a word we love for our genitals? Do you like pussy?
Charlotte Rose: 03:48 I don’t.
Chris Rose: 03:49 Yoni?
Charlotte Rose: 03:50 No.
Chris Rose: 03:50 No. Vulva?
Charlotte Rose: 03:53 Yeah I mean …
Chris Rose: 03:55 That’s so funny you’re struggling. We’ve done 320 some episodes of this podcast. What is the word you use for what’s between your legs?
Charlotte Rose: 04:04 I know. I mean I use vulva most often because I feel like I like the letter V and I like how it sounds, and I like that it is truth telling.
Chris Rose: 04:17 I feel like in this conversation we tend to use very specific words. So we use vulva, labia, vagina, clitoris, clitoral hood. Like we tend use more specific words rather than one word for the whole thing.
Charlotte Rose: 04:30 Right. And I also feel like I want to name the specific anatomy so that it’s also more inclusive of bodies that may not identify as women or female, but do have the parts that we’re talking about. So I feel happy with vulva. I understand some people find that too technical, but I think the technicality’s are kind of hard.
Chris Rose: 04:50 Yeah. So in this conversation we’ll try to be as specific as possible with the anatomy we’re talking about, and know that that anatomy can be found on different ranges of bodies. And a lot of people use vagina as the shorthand, which is actually super limiting because vagina is just the muscular sheath that runs from the outside of the body up to the cervix. That’s all it refers to, is this one entry point from the vaginal opening to the cervix. And that’s like defining a car by one of its doors or something. We like to think of the entire sexual system, and the entire sexual system of course being the whole human body and the social system we live in and the universe itself. But when we talk about the sexual system mostly we’re talking about the pelvis and the interlocking web of the pelvic muscles, the pelvic blood flow, the nerves, the nerves that then go up to the spinal cord and the brain, the anatomy of fleshy bits. So the penis or the clitoris, the perineum, all of the muscles there. The anus is included in our idea of the sexual system. So really all of the sexual anatomy and reproductive anatomy if you’re including reproduction in this definition. And all of the bits that connect to it. So this is the perspective we’re looking at this with.
Chris Rose: 06:23 So let’s talk about the fluids of one presentation of the sexual system in humans, which is the vulva, the vagina, the clitoris. So when we talk about getting wet, what does that mean when we say she’s wet? And I could reach over in the office now and pull some erotica off the shelf and find passage after passage that references wetness and, oh when I saw his throbbing member I got wet. So why do we have this vision of wetness as this shorthand for arousal, and what do we mean by that?
Charlotte Rose: 07:03 And why do we talk about members? Why do we … But we won’t get sidetracked by that. We got to stay focused.
Chris Rose: 07:09 You know I have a whole list. I have a whole file of the other podcasts I want to produce some time, and one of them is deconstructing erotica and pulling apart some of this language. In another lifetime. All right so, wetness. When we talk about that, usually what we’re talking about is vaginal lubrication. An idea of a gushing forth of slick slippery wetness from the vagina as part of the arousal process in people with vulvas and vaginas. So that turns out to be just one kind of fluid that comes from the vaginal and vulva area. So I want to first just knock a few others off the table so we know what we’re not talking about, and then talk about this process of vaginal lubrication and fluids when aroused. Does that make sense?
Charlotte Rose: 08:07 Sounds good.
Chris Rose: 08:08 Cool. So there’s like vaginal sweating.
Charlotte Rose: 08:11 Which is something I don’t think we think about much.
Chris Rose: 08:13 No. Right, like there’s tit sweat, and underarm sweat, and foot sweat. And different human bodies have different numbers of sweat glands. We all have this idea there’s really sweaty human beings, and there’s human beings that barley glisten. And a lot of that is just genetics and just like personal stuff. So different people have different amounts of vaginal sweat and genital sweat in general, and butt sweat if we’re in the area. So just identify that as a thing. And sometimes that presents like in the creases of the thighs, sometimes it’s really like just … We all have different presentations of genital sweat.
Charlotte Rose: 08:55 Yeah but if you’ve never thought about that, just as a curiosity and a fascination next time you workout go to the bathroom afterwords and just feel, because it’s interesting just to learn more about your body. And just sort of notice like oh, is that what vaginal sweat feels like? Just for your own information.
Chris Rose: 09:10 Well it can be part of a full body sweat. Again, like at a gym or sauna, or a hot day. But it can also be kind of different sweats can be specific. Like different people have different anxiety sweats. Or sweats related to different emotions. And there’s angry sweats that present in different sweat glands. Maybe we’ll do a whole episode about sweat some time.
Charlotte Rose: 09:35 It’s fascinating.
Chris Rose: 09:35 Totally. I kind of like saying it again and again. So how wet do you get from sweat? And again this conversation we’re going to focus on vulvas and vaginas, but a lot of this information is very relevant to all genital members. Because again, we all have more in common than different when we’re talking about sweat glands, and blood flow, and musculature, and nerves, and all of these things. The more we talk about genitals on this podcast and the more you can look at images, we all have way more in common than different. It’s just kind of different in the architecture of the same elements. All right, so sweat glands. And as I’m talking again, my mouth is getting a little dry, because I’m talking about it. So that’s another kind of wetness, is the mucus membranes of the vulva and vagina. So just like your mouth gets more or less wet with saliva, our vulvas get more or less wet with their native lubrications. And there’s a lot of factors here. The main one that I’m experiencing right now is hydration and use. I am using my mouth and so it is getting a little dry, because air is flowing in and out. I should drink more water.
Chris Rose: 10:53 If the vulva itself is just kind of dry, a lot of this is just full body hydration cues. And the vaginal lubrication is a self generating lubrication like saliva. Like our mucus membranes take care of themselves by generating different fluids with different amino acids, and different electrolytes, and we could like also geek out on our mouth and vaginal fluids in that category. We have whole ecosystems here. And for the most part the vagina and the vulva are a self maintaining ecosystem when provided the environment they are meant to thrive in. Right, like any other ecosystem. Our body as it turns out has all these amazing micro ecosystems, and you can really geek out on this. Like our left hand and our right hand have different kinds of bacteria that thrive there based on what we do with them all day.
Charlotte Rose: 11:58 So astounding.
Chris Rose: 12:00 How cool is that? Our eyelashes and our eyelids have a whole range of ecosystems. If you were to zoom in on the body like we do with terrains … If you think about the ecosystem on the top of a mountain versus the valley below and the whole range in between, so that’s kind of how the human body is. But we also do all these things that mess with those terrains.
Chris Rose: 12:24 What a metaphor we are spinning here. So the vagina thrives when it can have access to air and clean water, and proper nutrition and blood flow, and all of that stuff. So the vaginal discharge … So we’re now moving, we’ve talked about sweat, we’ve talked about the self lubrication like saliva that happens in the vulva, and then around the labia, but also into the vagina itself, and the anus if you want to get technical about it. There’s all these different regions that keep themselves moist. And there’s a word. A lot of people hate the word moist, and there’s whole studies about this word. So if you’re one of those people, hello moist.
Charlotte Rose: 13:09 You might not want to listen to this episode.
Chris Rose: 13:11 Well I’ll try to pivot from moist. But these areas for the most part are trying to keep themselves at a healthy level of moistness just like your mouth. So then we have a category called vaginal discharge. And this is the one that tends to make people go … because discharge feels more of like a medical word, but it doesn’t have to be. There’s a whole range of discharge that can happen from the vagina. Meaning that tube that goes up to the cervix. And this discharge can be just normal and healthy. Normal meaning part of your ecosystem that ranges along your hormonal and menstrual cycles. And it can be like a white odorless kind of range from like waxy greasy, to then your cervical fluid, which is that really stringy, egg white like texture cervical fluid that really emerges around ovulation. So these are some of the fluids and the discharges that come just in and around the vulva and vagina just as part of like they’re daily business and their monthly cycles. And we get more or less intimate with these fluids as we have different relationships with our vulva and vagina.
Chris Rose: 14:32 When we were trying to get pregnant we would call it cervical spelunking. And I would put a speculum in you my dear love and check your cervical discharge for cues about your ovulation.
Charlotte Rose: 14:45 And a head lamp people. For reals.
Chris Rose: 14:47 Full visual. And you know I name that both because in a lot of cultures and a lot of times this is how women self knew their own fertile cycles, by tracking their cervical fluid. And sometimes you can’t help it. You’re wiping your vulva and you get a huge beautiful handful of cervical fluid. And you can stretch it between your fingers and it can be elastic for inches. I remember as a kid, when this was coming and being fascinated by this fluid. Because it seems like as magical as it turns out to be. This is like a slip and slide that the body puts out to usher sperm and semen up into the cervix. It’s like a corridor that emerges out of the cervix when your cervix is nice and open, and I got to see your cervix at different stages. Some couples find themselves in these funny rituals when they’re trying to get pregnant. More and more I think we’re in a more deliberate relationship to our fertility. Some by choice and some by distress. And in those stages you become very aware of things like cervical fluid. But we can all choose to be more aware of this.
Chris Rose: 16:08 So we’re going to move into the sexual fluids realm now. But we wanted to kind of paint the terrain of like all of the different fluids. And then of course there’s pee that comes out of the urethra. So we have the vagina, the hole that goes up to the cervix. Above that is the urethra, a smaller hole that the pee comes out of. We’ll talk later about squirting and female ejaculation, but the urethra is also where the ejaculate comes out of on all bodies. And then above that is the clitoris and the clitoral hood. This is all ensconced, enfolded in the labia. And below that all is the anus and the perineum. Okay so do we have our visual picture of our holes and the fluids coming out of them? And I should have said this before, but maybe notice for yourself like what emotions and sensations and feelings are you having in your body as we’re having this conversation around the vulva and vagina, and it’s fluids and discharges?
Charlotte Rose: 17:12 I think it’s very common for a lot of people to feel grossed out and a bit revolted by these fluids.
Chris Rose: 17:22 Those are strong fighting words.
Charlotte Rose: 17:23 Yeah. Unfortunately I think in this culture and I think there’s value in just paying attention-
Chris Rose: 17:30 Grossed out and revolted.
Charlotte Rose: 17:32 Don’t you think?
Chris Rose: 17:32 I was going for like uncomfortable or uneasy, but okay. Yeah, yeah.
Charlotte Rose: 17:36 I think there’s a spectrum. I think there’s a spectrum that some people … And I think that it’s really valuable that we pay attention to them or just begin to notice them and get to know them. Because they truly are magical, exquisite fluids that allow for this whole system to work and exist, and self clean, and it is extraordinary. And I think that … I don’t know. I really want to sort of just begin to engage more fully with our fluids in order to honor the bodies that we have.
Chris Rose: 18:10 Well it’s to honor it, but it’s also to know what your normal is.
Charlotte Rose: 18:14 Totally.
Chris Rose: 18:14 When you know what your body’s kind of ever changing normal baseline is then you notice when something is starting to change or go wrong or need attention. If you know that your monthly cycles of discharge look a certain way, so at a certain level when your hormones are doing this, you have a whitish discharge that smells kind of neutral and that at a different point of your cycle you have that handful of cervical fluid I was talking about. And at this point in your cycle you get really horny and that’s when your pussy feels like this. If you can articulate that for yourself then you know when for six months you haven’t seen cervical fluid. And you start to be like huh, that’s something different. Or if a different kind of discharge that smells a different way, you can then the next time you go to your doctor or make a doctor’s appointment to start saying things like, my vaginal discharge changed and it starts smelling like this at this point in my cycle. And being able to say that to a practitioner give you such a big head start on things like infections and God forbid cancers and conditions that can really affect your life.
Chris Rose: 19:29 And so we all … And this is embodied wisdom. This is what I would put in that category of knowing your body and living in and with your body rather than despite your body. And for so many of us this sexual wisdom is totally cut off. Because when we’re coming of age … Like think of it as vulva owners. When we’re coming of age we don’t get pulled aside and taught about our magical cycles of release and renewal and how to manage those cycles and what they mean for our cycles of energy. And hormones and what our body might need, and then how to track that with our cervical fluid and our blood. And yeah, and how that aligns up with the moon, God forbid. Right, like we’re not taught any of that knowledge. Most people have no idea where they are in their menstrual cycle. They couldn’t tell you how many days away from ovulation they are. A lot of us are more and more using apps. A lot of us are on hormonal birth control that totally hijack the cycle anyway and have crazy side effects that we’re only beginning to talk about.
Chris Rose: 20:33 Anyway, so there’s a lot of reasons that in hearing this you might A, feel cut off from this knowledge, like never have even thought about your vaginal environment. Never have looked or touched, or engaged, or smelled the things that have come out of your genitals. We’re not encouraged to do that. But then also as Charlotte said the revolt and the disgust around this area is cultural. And yet of course there’s this obsession and all of us really like, there’s this desire for vulvas and vaginas and what they offer us and the experience of being with and in them parallel to this disgust and refusal to talk about them. So let’s just take that in for a moment. And now let’s shift to this conversation of sexual fluids. Sexual arousal. How that influences wetness. And we will do so after a shout out to our sponsor, LubeLife. So we will talk about sexual lubricant in the second half of the show for sure. For now let’s give a thanks to #LubeLife.
Chris Rose: 21:43 LubeLife is the best selling lube on Amazon. I think everyone should have a bottle of sexual lubricant in their house. Even if you are practicing chastity, even If you never have sex, even if you are super active, sexual, whatever your sexual style, have a bottle of lube in the house, because it will come in handy. Go to Amazon, search for LubeLife and find your bottle. Use the code 20mechanics for 20% off the lube of your choice. They have great silicon lube and organic water based lube at a great value. 20mechanics for 20% off, or use the links in the show notes page. Thanks to LubeLife for helping to make this podcast episode possible.
Chris Rose: 22:29 So let’s talk about sexual arousal and fluids and wetness. Because when I say it’s a myth, that doesn’t mean there is no correlation. When I say it’s a myth that means it is not a one to one that when a vulva bodied person, a human with a vulva, gets sexual aroused, that the vulva and the vagina get wet. That is not a one to one correlation. There is a relationship there. Sometimes, not all the time. As so this is one of those areas like so many of the areas we topic, that it’s complicated. There’s a lot of factors that influence this correlation. And so we need to dismantle the myth and get to know our reality with the bodies of us and those we love, and then also hold the fuller range of what’s possible and normalize the range of what’s possible. So sexual arousal in vulva bodied people does sometimes create tremendous wetness. A wetness that can flow from in and around the vulva and vagina, through the vagina, through the urethra, and also through all those sweat glands we were talking about and create a wet, slick, lubricant that ranges from a trickle … Ranges from a dewiness I should say. Sometimes it is just like a moistness. Sorry I won’t use that word. A moistness, a dewiness, a readiness, a flush. Sometimes it is a tidal wave.
Chris Rose: 24:19 It can be copious amounts of fluid that has to be managed with a towel on the bedside table. And I’m not yet talking about ejaculation, which is another phenomenon. That squirting that can be that ejaculate, that propellant of fluid out of the urethra at a height of climax. I’m talking about just the swell of fluids that can sometimes happen with arousal. So Charlotte we have been witness to, we’ve been privileged to be witness to thousands of bodies. Have you in the bodies you have and you’ve made love to witnessed this range of dewiness to tidal wave?
Charlotte Rose: 25:02 Yeah. Yes absolutely. Such a huge range of what you’re feeling with your hands, with your body. But it’s all good. I really want people to separate the idea that more wetness is better and that our bodies aren’t working correctly if they are not as wet as we imagine they should be or they could be, or they have been in the past. Our bodies will change as the seasons change, and in different stage of our life. And it’s so important to honor and let it be where it is at this moment.
Chris Rose: 25:48 And pay attention. So among those factors that can change your ecosystem, prescription drugs, dehydration, times of the month, levels of stress, levels of sleep.
Charlotte Rose: 25:59 Menopause, pregnancy.
Chris Rose: 26:01 Weather. How dehydrated are you from the hike you took that day. All of those factors. Your diet, what you’re eating recently. All those factors are going to influence all of your systems in your body including your genitals. And again we can just pay attention to these things and know these things. But to not shame at any point of that spectrum and know it will change for you. I remember the days where it was so copious I felt like I needed a bucket. Or like I would scoop it out after a hot eventing and play with handful of wetness. And I remember points of being sick where it was like the Sahara. These are hormonal things, these are health things, but these are also just like, I also smoke pot sometimes and the more a smoke pot, dry mouth, dry eyes. Different allergies can trigger dry vaginal environments. So it’s just not as you said, a more wet is better sexual arousal thing. Or like more sexually enlightened thing. And I also get emails from people all the time who feel like they’re two wet and want to learn how to shut it down. Because they find it messy and embarrassing and squelchy.
Chris Rose: 27:20 And then I get emails all the time from people who are like I’m not wet enough, or more often I get emails from partners who are like, I feel like I’m doing all the right moves, I feel like my partner is turned on, but she is never wet. What am I doing wrong?
Charlotte Rose: 27:37 Nothing.
Chris Rose: 27:37 And that’s the equivalent of I feel sexy, I’m trying to turn my husband, boyfriend on, and he’s not getting hard, what am I doing wrong? Right, we’re looking for these cues of arousal, but it could mean any number of things. So pay attention for yourself, get to know your range, and know that it will change. We should all drink more water. The only should I will do on this show … Like there’s a very few shoulds. Drink more water, feel hydrated, a healthy diet. All of those things will help, but also things like blood flow to the genitals. Also things like strengthening and relaxing the pelvic muscles. These things help with vaginal and genital lubrication and engorgement too. Lots of factors, lot of outcomes, explore your system. But the other thing to really take in here is what Emily Nagoski and other brilliant thinkers talk about is, arousal non-concordance. Because the other part of this dismantling the myth is that you can be really wet and engorged, and your genitals can be throbbing, and you might not be sexual turned on at all.
Chris Rose: 28:53 And same with guys. Guys can have a hard penis and a lubricated penis, which for men mean a pre-cum. We can have aroused genitals and not be sexually aroused at all. And that’s also really important to know.
Charlotte Rose: 29:13 We’ve been talking about this so much, but I don’t think … Have we said specifically that wetness isn’t related to how turned on you are.
Chris Rose: 29:21 But this is what we’re dismantling. So I just named if you’re wet you’re not aroused, and you can be very aroused and not wet. I think we’re covering it.
Charlotte Rose: 29:30 Yeah.
Chris Rose: 29:30 Yeah.
Charlotte Rose: 29:31 And very aroused and very wet.
Chris Rose: 29:34 Right.
Charlotte Rose: 29:34 It’s just that the aroused-ness the turned-on-ness in your brain, in your body, doesn’t necessarily represent through wetness. And so just know that for yourself, and for your partner. That that is not a … It is something that can represent turned-on-ness, but isn’t the only.
Chris Rose: 29:54 This is what we’re going for. So correlation, but not direct relationship. And it can be a confusing relationship sometimes. Like I feel really aroused and I’m so into this, why aren’t I wet? Because I used to get wet when I got aroused, and we can problematize this. We can be like maybe I’m not as aroused as I think. Like we can make all sorts of … Or I’m really aroused, but he’s just my coworker and I’m not actually turned on, but why is my pussy so wet when I go to the bathroom? Well you might not be aroused, you might be angry. And angry is a different kind of excitation and arousal of the system. And so if you’re yelling at your coworker and feeling fired up, but you have to be socially polite, and your body’s getting fired up. And you might go to the bathroom after that meeting and reach down and find that you’re all wet. That’s not maybe sexual excitation, that’s just arousal. And just knowing that in your head and being able to check in. And maybe you are sexually aroused and that’s a confusing dynamic. But maybe not.
Chris Rose: 31:00 We need to have deeper knowledge of these systems so we can map these experiences for ourselves and start to have more of a consensual relationship with these systems and how we embody them. So sexual arousal non-concordant with wetness. This is important to know in all sorts of contexts like we just talked about. You can watch an action movie. I often get very wet, and my genitals start thrumming during an action movie. That’s fun for me to know. It doesn’t necessarily mean I’m sexually turned on.
Charlotte Rose: 31:39 But your body is excited.
Chris Rose: 31:41 Right.
Charlotte Rose: 31:41 Another system is feeling activated and you’re alert. And there’s so many different ways of being aroused in the body.
Chris Rose: 31:49 Right. And so notice for yourself, like just notice for yourself when do you get … And also I’m pulling apart here erection and engorgement. So for a penis owner that is more visual and visible. But I will put the podcast link in the show notes page, again we’ve done an episode on female erections, on clitoral erections. And so as a vulva owner, getting to know what that feels like. What does engorgement feel like? For some it feels like a throbbing or a thrumming, or it literally feels like your pussy is bigger, and it’s like at attention. And if you’re in a seat you can kind of like feel it filling out your seat a little bit. What does a clitoral erection feel like to you? And pulling apart kind of engorgement and throbbing sensation in and around your vulva, versus wetness. Because you might have a lot that sensation and the throbbing without wetness. You might have wetness without throbbing. Start to get to know that. And then I’m going to just … One more layer babes, you can do it. For me there’s also another sensation that’s more internal, like around my cervix and my uterus. And that is a different set of sensations. Like if that is contracting, uterine contractions.
Chris Rose: 33:18 And remember that uterine and pelvic contractions are part of the orgasm response. So sometimes when I’m really excited about an idea for an example, or a piece of art I’m looking at, I feel the contractions of the uterus and of the pelvic floor start to flutter. And for me that’s kind of another set of an orgasmic response or a set of responses that I can track and make sense of, have a relationship to. Again, these are all parts of interoception, that art of paying attention to the body and to the inside of the body. And when we have this data it just gives us more information and it becomes less confusing.
Charlotte Rose: 34:03 Yeah. All of this information is so important for us to know. I just was thinking about how we were talking about all the other discharges earlier, and wondering how many people are buying those vaginal cleaning products that they see, thinking that they are needing to clean all of that out, when it’s actually just part of our system that is working perfectly, and we don’t need to purchase other things to cleanse our bodies. But I feel like capitalism has-
Chris Rose: 34:32 It’s almost as if you’re saying there’s an industry creating anxiety about female bodies to sell products.
Charlotte Rose: 34:40 Yes. Yes. Yes. I mean it’s just amazing-
Chris Rose: 34:45 Don’t be a wacky socialist Charlotte. Do you really think they’d create a problem that didn’t exist to sell us something? Okay moving on. Yes, and I was just looking at some of our textbooks and references for this show and one of the groups I trust on this is OBGYN’s and midwives. People who deal with vaginas and vaginal discharge all day. One, my sister is a home birth midwife. Little fun fact of the Pleasure Mechanics. And so we talk, we geek out on vaginas a lot. We have latex gloves in equal numbers, but use them for different things. But I love talking to midwives and looking at texts about vaginas. I love textbooks about vaginas. And one of the things they all tend to agree on is that … So another category of discharge we didn’t talk about is when things like bacterial vaginosis kick in. Right, so when these ecosystems get disrupted through disease or stress, or conditions. Like you did a week of scuba diving in the tropics and your genitals never dried off. Like conditions that create things. Things like bacterial vaginosis are often caused by the products designed to clean vaginas.
Chris Rose: 36:09 One of our previous sponsors, Good Clean Love is doing a lot of work of creating products designed to be healthy vulva washes, if you do feel like you need a little extra wash there. Like a Ph balanced bio matched wash for things like bacterial vaginosis. They are not a sponsor of this episode, but shout out to our friends at Good Clean Love. Yeah, I think it’s … This is a whole area that there’s a lot of shame, a lot of secrecy. And we used to see things like Summer’s Eve douches on the shelf, which were vinegar rinses. And then transitioned from vinegar rinses to super harsh chemical cleaners. We’re using menstrual products with bleached cotton and all sorts of fragrances in them. There’s all sorts of things we are doing to our vulvas and vaginas that are causing unsound conditions. Not to mention, lubes … So let’s get to lube. Lube is super important for a lot of sex acts. You can’t have anal sex or anal play without lube. Stroking the external genitals feels great with a little extra lube sometimes. And penetration of the vagina sometimes is much more comfortable with a little bit of lube.
Chris Rose: 37:32 But what lube you use matters. Just like think of all of the thought we put into what we put on and around our face. You know and especially a lot of woman and more and more men, we have eye creams, and night creams, and day creams, and sunscreens, and lip balms, and ear … What do you put in your ears? I don’t even know, but we think and we put a lot of attention into what we put on our face, and that’s skin. We’re talking about our genitals and a lot of us don’t even know what we’re putting in our genitals, what our genitals like, because we’ve been talking about these things like yeast infections and bacterial vaginosis, and discharge, but everyone has different kind of vulnerabilities in this area. Just like different food allergies, some people are really sensitive to sugars, so a lubricant with glycerine in it, to make it taste a little sweeter and smell a little better, glycerine is a sugar and to some people a lube with a glycerine in it will give them chronic yeast infections for a month. Other people use edible candy underwear and never get a yeast infection in their life.
Chris Rose: 38:44 So we can’t tell you what to do or not to do, you need to be aware of your body and of this kind of information and knowledge, and then be able to make better choices for your ecosystem.
Charlotte Rose: 38:58 Yeah, experiment with things and then see how it feels. And try other ones if they don’t feel good. Like you do with your face. Try different products, find what you like, throw out things that don’t work for you. It’s a process to discover what works best for you.
Chris Rose: 39:14 Mm-hmm (affirmative). And paying attention to right, like what are the ingredients that trigger kind of flairs for you. Ultimately going for what lube feels good going on. A good lubricant when you apply it, should feel yummy.
Charlotte Rose: 39:29 Like you’re doing something that’s good for your body.
Chris Rose: 39:31 Right, because your system is … Just like your face. When you put a good face oil on, you know you have that moment of like ah. It feels good, it smells good, and it feels good on your skin. It’s soaks in well. You feel better having used it. Set that bar for your lubricant and all of the products going into your genitals, and just notice. And sometimes it does mean throwing out a bottle of lube that you don’t love. And that happens with other products too and that’s annoying, but it happens. A lot of online sex toy stores, and again I’ll try to link some up, sell sampler kits. Or you can collect samples from different brands so you can try like a silicon lube, and a water based lube, and an organic really clean lube that’s free of a bunch of stuff, and see what works best for you. And this again is a factor of are you using latex condoms for your sex life? Do you use silicon toys a lot? These factors will influence what kind lube you use. I will link to some lubricant resources on the show notes page of this episode. But again, de-stigmatizing lube. Never feel embarrassed to reach for extra lube, because it means you’re not aroused enough.
Chris Rose: 40:48 I’m so ready to stop getting that email that correlates, oh we had to use lube and that is some failure of arousal. Bullshit. It could just mean you didn’t drink enough water that day, or you’re on a new prescription, or you ate too many pistachios, or that’s just the way your body is working right now at 55 years old, but you’re having the best sex of your life. It could be anything.
Charlotte Rose: 41:12 Or it could just feel more pleasurable to add a little bit of lube so that the sex acts feel more comfortable and pleasurable. Anything that adds to your pleasure is valuable and worthy, and it is not problematic.
Chris Rose: 41:23 And doesn’t need to be apologized for.
Charlotte Rose: 41:25 Yeah. It’s just you’re bringing your tools to the game.
Chris Rose: 41:29 Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Charlotte Rose: 41:30 That was good.
Chris Rose: 41:35 I just remembered our first night together and I had a toolbox with me.
Charlotte Rose: 41:38 Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Chris Rose: 41:39 Here we are as the Pleasure Mechanics.
Charlotte Rose: 41:40 Yeah that’s true. You came down into my bedroom with this whole little toolbox and like came and put it by the side of the bed. I’m like hello, someone’s prepared.
Chris Rose: 41:48 Hey I have an idea. All right we’re going to cut here, we’ll be with you next week. So next week is actually a really important episode. Let me give you a little preview of what’s coming here on Speaking of Sex. So go now, I will put a link in the show notes page. Get yourself a copy of Emily Nagoski’s new book Burnout. Emily Nagoski is the author of Come As You Are. I have gotten hundreds of emails from you guys over the years saying this book changed your life. She’s a brilliant writer who weaves science and sociology and she’s brilliant. Her new book is about burnout. About ending stress cycles so we can live better together. Next week we have an amazing interview with Emily. We had such a good time talking about this book. I’ve been reading the book. Get yourself a book on pre-order. We will be launching with an interview next week, and then the whole month of April is dedicated to preventing and ending sexual burnout. Because the themes in this book, the themes of stress and burnout are so much of what we see getting in the way of your sexual pleasure and happiness. And so we’re going to really be talking about ending sexual burnout and what do we need to do so we don’t bring our stress to bed? So stress isn’t the enemy number one of our sex life.
Chris Rose: 43:07 That’s what we’re going to be talking about in April. In May we’re going to be sliding into a whole new exciting-
Charlotte Rose: 43:15 Theme.
Charlotte Rose: 44:02 I thought you were saying my dears to the people, to our listeners.
Chris Rose: 43:15 Theme. Join us on our Patreon at patreon.com/pleasuremechanics. P-A-T-R-E-O-N, patreon.com/pleasuremechanics and we will be talking about all these themes, planning our monthly episodes together, having community discussions and more. And show us some love or the work we do in the world. Thank you so much to our patrons who help make this work possible. We send you so much love. We will be back with you next week with Emily Nagoski’s interview on Burnout. And we are so excited about what is coming this spring and summer from Pleasure Mechanics. We’ve got some good projects my dear.
Chris Rose: 44:05 You my dear.
Charlotte Rose: 44:06 Yes, yes, we do. It’s so exciting.
Chris Rose: 44:08 Are you feeling good?
Charlotte Rose: 44:09 Yeah.
Chris Rose: 44:10 Our kid is at school more. We have so much more time to work and play together.
Charlotte Rose: 44:16 An entire three and a half hours a day. It feels very luxurious.
Chris Rose: 44:21 I’m Chris.
Charlotte Rose: 44:22 I’m Charlotte.
Chris Rose: 44:23 We are the Pleasure Mechanics.
Charlotte Rose: 44:24 Wishing you a lifetime of pleasure.
Chris Rose: 44:27 Cheers.
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