Most (online and offline) shops that sell sex toys, also offer sex toy cleaners. But what are these cleaners, really? What do they contain? Are they safe? Do they actually work? Can you clean your sex toy, using a sex toy cleaner only? NBRplaza did the research.
Whenever I review a sex toy, I try to say something about how to clean it. That is important, but also a little complicated. Sex toys come in contact with your most intimate parts and when you don’t clean them well, bacteria and fungi can start to grow. And they can cause nasty infections. But toys come in many different materials, so there is not just a one-cleaning-tip-fits-all-toys. When you want to learn more about the best way to clean and maintain your sex toy, read all about it in our other blogpost.
Shockingly little known
There is very little information on cleaning products for sex toys. Yet, many people don’t give it much thought when they clean their vibrators, dildos, butt plugs and other toys with.
That’s why I decided to do long and extensive research, to conclude in the end that:
- There is no simple way to explain this complicated matter,
- Most information that can be found on the ingredients, is related to cosmetics (shampoo, conditioner, skin care, etc). Rarely, if ever, has any research been conducted to the effect of ingredients in cleaners on the material of sex toys.
- On top of that, the real question is what happens if residues of cleaner stay on your toy, and be transferred to your intimate parts.
That’s why this hasn’t become a whimsical piece of reading. Sorry.
When can you use a toy cleaner?
Whatever anyone says, toy cleaner never (NEVER, you hear?!) replaces a good and thorough cleaning of your toy. It’s like using dry shampoo for your hair. At some point you must wash it off under the shower. That is why you should always use your toy cleaner together with a good washing, for example as a replacement for soap.
When your legs are still shaking from that intense orgasm you just had, you probably don’t feel like stumbling into the shower to wash your toy. But it probably goes to far to just throw the toy back in the night stand, still containing all the bodily fluids and lube. In that case you could use some toy cleaner and a (moist) cloth. Every now and then, you’d still have to clean the toy with (running) water though.
Another time when toy cleaners can come in handy, is when you share your toy with multiple persons. Let’s just say you have a threesome, or group sex, or you are a swinger. Every time you will switch partners, you should clean your toy. In this case, you might want to use a toy cleaner.
Also on holidays sex toy cleaners can be convenient. You might not have the same cleaning methods at hand as you do at home.
But the best way to use toy cleaner is as a replacement of soap. Anyway, I strongly advice you to clean your toys properly every now and again.
How should you use a sex toy cleaner?
The best way to clean your sex toy with a sex toy cleaner, is by first washing it with water or wipe it with a (wet) cloth.
Then you spray some cleaner on your toy and wait several dozens of seconds. Some sex toy cleaners even tell you to wait until it is dried up completely.
After that, you can wipe your toy with a wet cloth, or wash it under running water (depending if your toy is waterproof). Make sure all cleanser is thoroughly removed.
You don’t actually need a sex toy cleaner. But if you must, at least have one that has safe ingredients (see below).
NOTICE: There are body safe and non-body safe cleaners. The first will also suitable to cleanse the skin. The second are not.
Sex Toy Cleaner and porous sex toys
What ever you do, when your sex toy is made of porous materials (like rubber, TPE, jelly) no cleaner will help you. These materials contain tiny holes where dirt, fungi and bacteria will pile up. No toy cleaner will ever be capable to kill all of it. In fact, there is even a risk that chemicals will pile up in the ‘pores’ of your toy.
What goes in sex toy cleaner?
Ingredients of cleaners differ from product to product. In general it will contain a mixture of substances with the following functions:
- Cleanse: These ingredients fight bacteria, fungi, grease, etc.
- Preserve: Some anti-bacterial ingredients however, are only meant to increase the shelf-life of the cleaner itself.
- Blend: Emulgators are substances that will make sure that the different ingredients will mix.
- Spread: By adding a surfactant, the spread will be facilitated, because the surface tension will be reduced.
- Bubbles: Occasionally, a foaming agent will be added, just because we believe that when something foams, it cleans better.
- Nourishing: Some cleaners also claim to have soothing and caring ingredients. Which is off, when they are meant to be removed from the toy with water or a wet cloth. Only when you have a body safe cleaner, that could also be used to cleanse the (intimate) skin, this could be important.
When you have to wash it off, why are ingredients so important?
Good point! Well, because you will never wipe everything off with a cloth, even if that is meant to! There is a chance that residu of the cleaner will remain on your toy. If you, for example, get some bacteria killer in your vagina (for the sake of argument) it could have harmful effects.
And if you use a ‘body safe’ cleaner, you could also used it to cleanse the skin (of your intimate parts). See, now it becomes a completely different story!
On top of that, the material that your sex toy is made of, might not be compatible with some of the chemicals that are being used. Be very careful with alcohol and silicone that is used in some sex toy cleaners.
That’s why it is extremely important to know what are good, less good, or even bad ingredients that could be in your sex toy cleaner. Deal?
List of ingredients you could come across
Every sex toy cleaner is different and the formulation differs from product to product. Below, you will find a list of ingredients that you could run in to in sex toy cleaners. I have done research on how they are used, mostly in cosmetics. I have mentioned when there might be a reason to have some doubts over a specific ingredient. Please consider that there has never been conducted any scientific research into the use of these ingredients in sex toy cleaners.
ALLANTOÏNE / ALLANTOIN– Safe
Occurs in nature in wheat germ and comfrey and is very popular in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. Soothes, moisturizes and prevents (skin) irritation.
ALOE BARBADENSIS LEAF EXTRACT / ALOË VERA – Safe
The plant juice can be used as a wound remedy and against sunburn. It is often used in cosmetics. The flesh is processed in drinks.
ALTHAEA OFFICINALIS ROOT EXTRACT – Safe
The starch with protein-like substances found in the root was used in the past to make marshmallows. Cooked, the leaves of this plant are edible, the flowers are used in salads. Medicinally, the root root has a soothing effect on the airways. It is used in cough drink.
AMMONIUM LAURYL / SLS (or DODECYL) SULFATE (SDS) – Questionable
This is a substance that is made by isolating the fatty acid lauric acid from palm oil or coconut oil, changing it to lauryl alcohol and then processing it with sulfuric acid and finally neutralizing it with salt. SLS is best known for its cleaning effect; it can dissolve fats. SLS is used in shampoo because it de-greases well and SLS also ensures that the shampoo foams and is easier to distribute. Some blogs warn against this ingredient in shampoo because it is irritating to eyes and skin and can cause internal damage.
AQUA – Safe
Water. This is the bases for most toy cleaners.
AVENA SATIVA (OAT) KERNEL EXTRACT – SAFE
Oats are used, among other things, as a constituent of cosmetics and in external preparations for the treatment of eczema and dry skin.
BENZALKONIUM CHLORIDE (BZK, BKC, or BAC) – Acceptable
BAC is used as an active substance in disinfectants (for example lysol), for the prevention of athlete’s foot, or for combating algae in swimming pools and water beds. In low concentrations it is a preservative for example in ear drops, eye drops, nose drops and shampoos. It is only intended for external use, as swallowing can cause nausea and vomiting. Benzalkonium chloride is also found in cleaning products.
BENZYL ALCOHOL – Acceptable
Benzyl alcohol is a colorless liquid with a slightly aromatic odor. The substance is a natural component of various essential oils, such as ylang-ylang oil. Benzyl alcohol is generally used as a solvent in, among other things, ink and paint. Benzyl alcohol is also used in the preparation of a number of drugs because the substance prevents bacteria from multiplying. That is why it works well as a preservative. In low concentrations it is permitted in cosmetics.
BUTYLENE GLYCOL – Avoid
Butylene Glycol is a chemically produced solvent that acts as a moisture-binding agent. Thanks to Butylene Glycol, the skin can retain moisture better and therefore looks fuller and smoother. It is seen as an inexpensive alternative to propylane glycol or glycerin. However, it is toxic in high concentrations to the central nervous system and kidneys.
CAPRYLYL GLYCOL – Safe
Moisturizer that is mainly used in cosmetics to add no or fewer preservatives. Under special circumstances and in very low doses, caprylyl glycol has a preservative effect, because it ensures that yeasts and molds have less water available. So it prevents them from growing and your product gets full of them. As a result, very mild products can be made that also work against skin problems involving micro-organisms, such as acne (skin care products) and dandruff (shampoos).
CHAMOMILLA RECUTITA FLOWER EXTRACT – Safe
From the dried real chamomile, tea is made for mouthwash and more. Due to the higher percentage of blue azulene and bisabolol, the oil has anti-inflammatory properties and is processed into ointments.
CHLOORHEXIDINE GLUCONATE – Acceptable (can cause allergic reactions)
Chlorhexidine is a disinfectant. It inhibits the growth of bacteria and fungi. Occurs in mouthwash, or disinfectant for wounds. Some people are allergic to chlorhexidine, even in very small amounts.
CITRIC ACID – Safe
Citric acid is a white, colorless powder with a crystal structure that occurs naturally in citrus fruits. Citric acid is used as a natural preservative and antioxidant. It is also used as a (natural) cleaner because it descales.
COCAMIDE DEA – Avoid
DEA (diethanolamine) is a synthetic solvent, disinfectant and cleaning agent. It is found in liquid soap, shampoo, hair dye, cream, bubble bath, liquid detergent and dishwashing detergent. It is harmful to the liver, kidneys and pancreas. It irritates the skin, mucous membranes and eyes. It can cause cancer in various organs and is particularly dangerous for small children. The contact also causes dermatitis and allergies. It is dangerous and toxic. This variant is extracted from coconut oil but is no less dangerous. It forms nitrosamines on the skin. Nitrosamines are carcinogenic. It is used in cleaning agents to make it foam. The American FDA allows cocamide DEA in small percentages.
COCAMIDOPROPYL BETAINE / COCAMIDOPROPYL HYDROXYSULTAINE – Questionable (can cause allergic reactions)
Is extracted from coconut oil and can cause all kinds of nasty allergic reactions. This semi-synthetic substance is widely used in shampoos and other cleaning agents (lotions, liquid contact lenses, hair products, shaving products, toothpaste, etc.) as a thickener and foamer. It is a substance that more and more people are allergic to. The development of eczema may also be related to the use of products containing cocamidopropyl betaine.
CUCUMIS SATIVUS (CUCUMBER) FRUIT EXTRACT – Safe
Extract from cucumber. Often used in skin products to get softer skin or to soften sunburn.
DECYL GLUCOSIDE – Safe
This substance is made from coconut oil and sugars and is a least aggressive cleaner. In addition, it is biodegradable. Used a lot. Does not irritate and does not cause allergic reactions.
DENATURED ALCOHOL – Questionable
Denaturing means making it unsuitable for human consumption. In this case, ethanol (alcohol) is denatured to spirit, a product that is used as a cleaning agent.
Some sex toy manufacturers (for example LELO) warn that it is better not to clean their (silicone) toys with alcohol. Alcohol also dries out the skin.
DISODIUM COCOAMPHODIACETATE – Acceptable
This substance has the function of cleaning and is a foam booster. This product also takes care of the skin. This substance is sometimes wrongly ‘lumped together’ with other tensides (such as SLS and SLES) when it comes to their risks. Disodium cocoamphodiacetate is considered a mild alternative to these surfactants and are safe in cosmetics.
DISODIUM EDTA – Questionable (can cause allergic reactions)
Within cosmetics (and also within food and pharmaceuticals) the EDTA compounds are used to prevent the adverse effects of metals (which can still be present in water, for example). Residues of these metals can react with other substances in a cosmetic product. This can affect shelf life, consistency and odor. The presence of metals in a product can also reduce the antibacterial effect of preservatives. The addition of EDTA compounds therefore makes a product more stable. In addition, EDTA compounds can help to optimize the acidity (pH value) of cosmetic products. Addition of EDTA can correct this and ensure that fewer preservatives are needed. Furthermore, it ensures optimum foaming of soap products that need this.
Some (internet) sources claim that EDTA is carcinogenic and irritating. However, conclusive literature on this subject cannot be found. Other scientific research shows that EDTA is safe in concentrations below 2%. Typical concentrations of EDTA in cosmetic products are at most in tenths of percent.
However, there is an environmental aspect. EDTA is almost non-biodegradable.
DISODIUM LAUROAMPHODIACETATE – Safe
Surfactant, foaming agent and cleaning agent. Occurs in mild soap, facial cleansing, shaving products and foot bath salts. It has a low irritation rate.
DIAZOLIDINYL UREA – Questionable (can cause irritation and allergic reactions)
This is a preservative and pH stabilizer. May only be used in very low doses. Dermatologists warn of allergic reactions to this substance.
ETHYLHEXYLGLYCERIN – Questionable (can cause irritation and allergic reactions)
This is a very mild preservative and surfactant. Yet there are studies that show that it can cause skin irritation.
FRAGRANCE (PARFUME) – Questionable
The term “fragrance” means really nothing at all. It could be anything. Without further specification, I’d avoid it.
If you have sex toys that take on odor, do not spray odorant on it to mask it. Better read our blog post about cleaning sex toys. It contains tips that can help in some cases.
GLYCERIN – Acceptable
Glycerin and glycerol are a sugar alcohol. There is a lot of discussion about this material. Especially about the use of glycerin in lubricant. Assuming that the glycerin in your toy cleaner is not used internally (read: that it enters the vagina or anus), this discussion is less relevant.
HEAMIDINE (HEXAMIDINE) DIISETHIONATE – Safe
Used as a preservative and bacterial killer. Often used in cosmetic products such as eye makeup. Hexamidine Diisethionate helps to cleanse the skin and prevents odors by killing microorganisms.
HYDROXYETHYLCELLULOSE / HEC – Questionabe (can cause allergic reactions)
Hydroxyethyl cellulose is a thickener or gelling agent. It is used as an ingredient in solutions such as household cleaners, soap and shampoo. It thickens these solutions and reduces the amount of foam. It increases the cleaning effect, because it surrounds the dirt particles, which can then be washed away with water. It can cause allergic reactions to the skin.
LACTIC ACID – Safe
Lactic acid is widely used in personal care products such as peelings, creams, lotions, masks and cleansers. Lactic acid is used in personal care products as a pH regulator and as a wetting agent. In addition, it is used to remove dead skin cells (exfoliate). This exfoliating effect helps prevent the signs of aging skin.
LAURYL GLUCOSIDE – Safe
There are no restrictions on its use in cosmetic products. Lauryl glycoside is used in, among other things, liquid soaps, sunscreen creams and shampoos. It is also suitable for products for sensitive skin and for baby products. It is extracted from sugar.
LAVANDULA ANGUSTIFOLIA – Safe
This is oil that is extracted from the lavender plant. It has an antibacterial effect, kills fungi and is gentle on the skin.
LEPTOSPERMUM PETERSONII – Safe
This is also an essential oil extracted from the twigs and leaves of the lemon tea tree. It is widely used in shampoo, gel, conditioner, lotions. It kills bacteria, cleanses the skin, kills fungi.
MELALEUCA ALTERNIFOLIA – Safe
Tea tree oil is an essential oil that is obtained by steam distillation from leaves of the tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia). It has an antibacterial and anti-fungal effect.
METHYLCHLOROISOTHIAZOLINONE – Questionable (can cause allergic reactions)
This is a preservative to prevent the product itself from perishing. May cause contact dermatitis in case of long-term contact with the skin.
METHYLISOTHIAZOLINONE – Avoid (can cause serious allergic reactions)
Methylisothiazolinone (MI) is a preservative that is frequently used in the personal care industry. However, there is currently some concern that it can cause allergies in some people. Some manufacturers (such as Unilever) have stopped using this substance. In 2013, research by Dutch dermatologists showed that the substance can lead to an allergic reaction with symptoms such as swelling of the face, itching, hives, redness and eczema.
METHYLPARABEN – Questionable
Methylparaben is widely used as a preservative. In cosmetics, it is used for the preservation of shampoo, cream and other high-water cosmetics. In food it is mainly used as a preservative for sauces and fish products.
In addition, methyl paraben is widely used for the preservation of various water-containing liquid products such as cleaning agents, paints, inks and water-based adhesives.
There is a lot of consternation around parabens. Parabens appear to be safer in terms of allergic reactions than many newer alternatives. It is just as likely that people respond to ‘natural’ preservatives such as rosemary extract or tea tree oil as to parabens in cosmetics. When used in cosmetics, parabens can certainly penetrate the skin and it has been shown that they can occur in human tissue. There are many different parabens and there is a big difference in safety. Unfortunately, despite prolonged use, relatively little research has been done into possible negative effects.
NEOHESPERIDIN DIHYDRO CHALCONE – Questionable
This is an artificial sweetener. No idea why you should add that to a sex toy cleaner. Anyone?
OLEFIN SULFONATE – Questionable
Sulphates are known as strong cleansing agents in, for example, toothpaste, shower gel and shampoo. Sulphates are salts or esters of sulfuric acid. Sulphates are very powerful, but at the same time fairly aggressive cleaners, the use of which is often associated with a drying and irritating effect. Sulphates are also excellent foaming agents.
PANTHENOL – Safe
Panthenol, also known as Vitamin B5, is a beauty ingredient that is found in many hair and skin products. Panthenol is known for its ability to attract moisture and works on dry and irritated skin.
POLYETHYLENE GLYCOL (PEG) – Questionable
PEG is an abbreviation for the substance Polyethylene Glycol. This substance is a chain of several units of ethylene glycol. The number that is often behind the substance, such as PEG-100 Stearate, indicates the average chain length. The higher the number, the longer the material. These substances are used in many areas, including cosmetics. It is most commonly used as a solvent.
Many studies show that this substance is not good for your skin and can be irritating. PEG is known to help other substances penetrate the skin. Bacteria also hitch on that. It can also affect the moisture of your skin (dehydration).
These consequences, however, depend on the type of PEG that you are dealing with and the condition of your skin. With broken or dry skin, the chance is bigger that the substance will penetrate your skin.
PEG-12 DIMETHICONE – Questionable
This is a silicone that occurs in many shampoos. It gives the emulsion a smoother feel and makes it easier to spread. It is considered a safe product.
However, it is unknown to me what the risk is if you use this product on silicone sex toys. It is known that different types of silicones can react with each other. For safety’s sake, I would carefully test it on a silicone toy.
PEG-[7, 30, 40, 78, 80] GLYCERYL COCOATE – Questionable
These PEGs are polyethylene glycol ethers. They are used in hair dye, cleaning products and skin care products. PEG-7 Glyceryl Cocoate is a skin moisturizer. It is used to spread products more easily.
PEG-30, -40, -78 and -80 Glyceryl Cocoate cleanse the skin and hair because they help to mix fats and water. This makes it easier to wash away grease.
PEGs are completely safe in their pure form. However, 1.4-dioxane can develop during the production of PEGs, which may be carcinogenic. Although you would expect production to be safe these days, a 2011 study found that 52 out of 105 products tested were contaminated.
PENTYLENE GLYCOL / PG – Questionable (can cause irritation)
Pentylene glycol is a chemically produced antimicrobial moisture-binding substance. It ensures that the growth of micro-organisms on the skin is inhibited. At the same time, it moisturizes the skin, making it look tighter. It is generally considered safe, but can cause skin irritation if exposed in large quantities.
PHENOXYETHANOL – Questionable
Phenoxyethanol is a chemical bactericidal substance that, if inhaled, can cause respiratory irritation, headache and disturbed central nervous system function. In animals, pehnoxyethanol caused fertility problems and even in low doses, skin irritation occurred. Phenoxyethanol is therefore in the top 10 most common allergies. This toxic substance is therefore only permitted in the EU in cosmetic products up to a maximum concentration of 1%.
But because this preservative is present in so many products, the maximum daily ‘safe’ dose is easily exceeded by the unsuspecting consumer. Besides the fact that penoxyethanol is a toxic substance that can cause a lot of damage when it enters your body, it also has a very drying effect on the skin because it has an extremely de-greasing effect.
Great to clean your toy with, but rinse well and it is better not to use it directly on the skin.
PHOSPHOLIPID / fosfolipiden – Safe
Phospholipids are skin care and keep the skin in good condition. They improve the moisture content of the skin. The skin therefore looks smoother and fuller. In addition, phospholipids protect the skin and are permitted as an ingredient in natural cosmetics.
POLOXAMER 184 – Safe
Poloxamer 184 is one of the numerous poloxamers developed by BASF. It is a synthetic polymer that is used in skin care as a cleansing ingredient, including in micellar ‘water’.
It forms a fat-attracting layer with which sebum and makeup can be removed from the skin.
POLYGLYCERYL-4 CAPRATE – Safe
Polyglyceryl-4 Caprate serves in particular as an emulsifier and as a surfactant. It is used as an alternative to PEG and triethanolamine (TEA). It is considered safe.
POLYSORBATE 20 (of 40) – Questionable
These substances are made from PEG. They are synthetic and can cause allergy. See further PEG
POTASSIUM SORBATE – Safe
Potassium sorbate is a preservative that is generally regarded as safe. It is the inactive salt of sorbic acid. Sorbic acid occurs naturally in some fruits. However, almost all Sorbic acid is produced synthetically worldwide. It is not a widely applicable preservative and is therefore often combined with other preservatives.
PROPYLENE GLYCOL – Questionable
Propylene glycol is a moisture carrier and is used in products instead of glycerin, for example in shampoos and makeup, but also in muffins and cakes. It absorbs better into the skin than glycerin and it is cheaper, therefore it is widely used in cosmetics. However, it is also used in detergents, brake fluid, antifreeze, latex and paint. It degreases and dries the skin very strongly. Moreover, it can be absorbed into the bloodstream. It may cause heart rhythm disorders and it may cause kidney damage and liver abnormalities.
PROPYLPARABEN – Questionable
This paraben has the same effect and the same warning as other parabens. See also methyl baraben.
SODIUM BENZOATE – Safe
Sodium benzoate is a preservative and antifungal. For example, it is in shampoo and creams and sometimes in wipes. It is widely used and is relatively harmless. It is laid down by law how much sodium benzoate a product can contain. It can irritate the skin.
SODIUM CHLORIDE – Safe
Sodium chloride is the same as common table salt. It occurs naturally in seawater and is essential for the moisture balance and many other processes in our body. Sodium chloride is used in medicines (for example in nasal spray so that you can breathe freely again). It is also used in personal care products such as shampoo and sunscreen. Sodium chloride then acts as a thickener. The amount of salt in personal care products is many times lower than in, for example, seawater.
SODIUM CITRATE – Safe
Sodium citrate is the salt of citric acid. It is used as an antioxidant, preservative and to balance the pH value.
SODIUM LAURYL SULPHATE & SODIUM LAURETH SULPHATE (SLS) – Questionable
Both Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) and Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLES) are surfactants (or surfactants). These are substances that are used in combination with water to dissolve oil or fat. Because surfactants reduce surface tension, they produce foam and make products easier to spread.
The major disadvantage of surfactants is that they can also easily dissolve the natural skin fat outside of sebum and dirt. This could cause dry skin, pimples and red spots.
SODIUM PCA – Safe
Sodium salt of pyrrolidone carbonic acid (PCA), extracted from glutamic acid. Used for example as an antistatic ingredient in hair products.
SODIUM TRIDECETH SULFATE – Safe
A cleansing product that also acts as a surfactant. Improves foaming. Is used as a mild cleanser in skin products.
SORBITOL – Safe
The substance sorbitol is formed in the human body during the metabolic process, when the body breaks down glucose to produce energy. Sorbitol is a natural component of certain fruits, such as apples and pears, and is also found in tobacco plants. It has a slightly sweet, caramel-like odor and a sweet taste and is therefore used as an artificial sweetener in food and health products.
It is also used as a wetting agent to prevent dehydration of food and cosmetics. Furthermore, sorbitol has the property that it dissolves oil in water and is therefore used in cleaning agents.
SUCRALOSE – Questionable
This is also an artificial sweetener. It is unclear why you would use it in a sex toy cleaner. As a sweetener it is associated with cancer.
TETRASODIUM EDTA – Questionable
Tetrasodium EDTA is a chelating substance. This means that it can ‘catch’ and retain other substances. This chemical is found in personal care products such as hand soap and shampoo, in skin care products and it is found in detergents.
EDTA compounds can help to optimize the acidity (pH value) of a product.
Products with tetrasodium EDTA can be safely used under normal use. See also disodium EDTA.
THYMOL – Safe
This product is a powerful variant of thyme oil. It has a disinfecting and antifungal function.
TOCOPHEROL – Safe
This is the name used in cosmetics for vitamin E. It is used as an antioxidant to protect the shelf life of the product itself.
TOCOPHERYL ACETATE – Safe
Tocopheryl Acetate is the synthesized form of tocopherol and acetic acid. This variant of vitamin E is mostly used in cosmetic products, because this form is more stable than pure vitamin E.
TRICLOSAN – Avoid
Triclosan is a disinfectant. In addition, it is also used as a preservative in personal care products. The concentration of triclosan when used as a preservative is lower than when used as a disinfectant.
Producers and importers often emphasize the positive effect of disinfectants, such as triclosan, on hygiene and their contribution to the prevention of disease. However, research does not show any benefits of triclosan in hand soap or detergents compared to products that do not contain triclosan.
There is still much discussion going on about triclosan and resistance development. Resistance development means that bacteria become insensitive , or resistant to a disinfectant. Because the use of triclosan disinfectants by consumers does not result in a demonstrable health benefit, its use is not recommended.
TRIETHANOLAMINE – Avoid
This substance is used in make-up products such as eyeliner, mascara, eye shadow, blusher and foundation, but also in perfumes, hair care products, hair dye and shaving products.
It is used as an emulsifier, but also to adjust the pH value of products. It is toxic and can cause eye, skin and lung irritation and allergies. The substance can also be contaminated with nitrosamines, which are known to be carcinogenic.
WATER (AQUA) / DE-IONIZED WATER – Safe
Water is often a basic component of the toy cleaner. De-ionized water is purified water.
ZINC ACETATE – Safe
Zinc acetate is the salt that is formed by the action of acetic acid on zinc nitrate. It is used to clean the skin and has an antibacterial effect.
ZINC GLUCONATE – Acceptable
This product has an antibacterial effect. It is often used in anti-acne agents. It would also speed up the healing of wounds. There are some warnings with this product, but they are mainly for people who use it in industrial environments (and therefore in very large doses).
ZINC LACTATE – Acceptable
This is zinc salt from lactic acid. It has an antibacterial effect. Often used in toothpaste to combat plaque.
This list has been compiled by looking at the ingredient composition of 16 different sex toy cleaners and will be updated when new ingredients become known or if the information turns out to be incorrect due to renewed insight.
The information comes from various sources, which are freely accessible on the internet (including wiki and various cosmetic databases).
If you also have a toy cleaner and one of the ingredients is not listed, please let us know. I would like to sort it out for you.