How to Choose the Right Sex Toy Cleaning Process for Your Toys

How to Choose the Right Sex Toy Cleaning Process for Your Toys

You know you need to keep your sex toys clean, but is there a right way to do it? The answer is that it depends on a few factors. Regularly cleaning your toys is necessary, but the method you choose depends on multiple factors.

Here’s what you need to know to find the right cleaning process for your sex toys.

Understand Your Cleaning Options

Understand Your Cleaning OptionsThere are three main ways to clean your sex toys. Depending on the type of sex toys you own, you may only use one method, or you may use a combination. Each of these processes removes dirt, dust, lubricant, body fluids, and anything else that might get stuck to your toy. Only one method removes bacteria. Not cleaning your toys or only relying on a quick rinse shouldn’t be your go-to choice.

  • Soap and water work for most sex toys in most situations. Avoid heavily perfumed soaps and always use warm water.
  • Sex toys cleaners or wipes are safe for every toy and are simple to use. In some cases, you don’t even need to rinse your toy when you’re done.
  • Boiling water or putting your toy in the top rack of the dishwasher takes cleaning a step farther and lets you fully sanitize your sex toy. This method removes bacteria and germs as part of the cleaning process.

Know the Type of Sex Toy You’re Cleaning

The type of sex toy you have determines which cleaning method will work best. All sex toys can be cleaned with soap and water or a sex toy cleaner. These are universally good methods and should be your go-to. But if you want to sterilize your sex toy, maybe to share later or because you’ve used it a lot, the dishwasher or boiling water method will only work for specific sex toys.

  • Never place any sex toy with a motor or battery in the dishwasher or submerge it in boiling water. Many (but not all) toys without a motor can be sterilized.
  • Know the material first. Only silicone, glass, or metal can be placed in boiling water or the dishwasher. Anything else will melt, congeal, or otherwise be ruined.

If you can’t sanitize your toy, consider using a condom to protect it. You’ll still need to use soap or a cleanser to clean it, though. But condoms help prevent bacteria from getting on your toy in the first place, which is what the dishwasher and boiling water methods get rid of.

Think About the Time You Have

Think About the Time You HaveSome form of cleaning is better than no cleaning. The longer you let your sex toys sit with dried spunk and lube on them, the harder it will be to clean and the grosser it may become. Before you lie to yourself and say you’ll clean your dildo or masturbator later, pick the method that works for the time you have.

  • Sex toy cleaners and wipes are the fastest. A quick spray or wipe down, and you’re done. You should come back and do a more thorough cleaning later to get anything the cleaner might have missed.
  • Soap and water are great for most cleaning options. It takes just a few minutes but you can be more thorough than when you use a spray or wipe.
  • Using the dishwasher or boiling water method take the longest time, but they get your toys the cleanest, too.

Solo Sex Toys vs. Shared Sex Toys

Another factor to consider is whether the sex toy that needs cleaning is shared with a partner or only for you. A solo sex toy may not need to be sterilized as often (or at all) but sex toys shared with partners may need to be. To be clear, if you are the only person using your sex toy, you may still want to sterilize it or use a condom with it on occasion. But with partners, you need to consider it very carefully.

  • If you share the same sex toy across multiple partners, you should definitely use a condom or sterilize it regularly.
  • For partners who know their STI status and have been diagnosed with an STI or partners who do not know their status (because they have not been tested), you should use a condom or sterilize the toy after each use.
  • For monogamous partners who have not been diagnosed with an STI, you may want to do a “deep clean” in the dishwasher or boiling water every so often, but it’s less necessary.

And remember, many sex toys can’t be sanitized in a dishwasher or with boiling water. You can use a condom instead to keep them free of bacteria. This tends to make clean-up easier overall, no matter what cleaning method you choose.


The big thing to remember about how to clean your sex toys is that you need to clean them — after every use and maybe before if your toy has been sitting out. The method you use depends on several factors, but once you find what works for you and your toys, keep doing it. A clean sex toy is ready to play whenever you want. A crusty sex toy is just sad.

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Kayla L. Written by Kayla L..

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