Menopause marks a significant life transition for many people, bringing about changes in hormonal balance that can impact various aspects of health, including intimate wellbeing.

In the spirit of Menopause Awareness Month, qualified sexologist and Passionfruit educator Tori, explores the role of personal lubricants during this life transition and how to thoughtfully incorporate lube into your pleasure practice.

How lubricant can help support you during menopause.

Menopause can bring about hormonal shifts that contribute to vaginal dryness and discomfort during intimate activities. While commonplace, this discomfort can often lead to decreased desire and intimacy, affecting the overall wellbeing of those that experience menopause, and their intimate partners. An often overlooked ally in this journey, personal lubricants can act as a valuable solution in providing moisture and reducing friction to enhance the overall experience. Rather than a precursor for penetration or foreplay, we’re reframing lube as a catalyst for comfort with pleasure in mind.


Soothing the symptoms. Embracing sensations.

Vaginal dryness and atrophy are common experiences during menopause, often causing irritation and pain during penetrative intercourse. Personal lubricants, whether water-based, silicone-based, or oil-based, offer relief by alleviating dryness and reducing this friction. Beyond significantly minimising physical discomfort, personal lubricants play a role in promoting pleasure during intimacy by enhancing sensations and contributing to a more fulfilling experience. This is especially beneficial as maintaining a healthy and satisfying intimate life is integral to overall quality of life during and after menopause.


Different strokes.

Understanding the different types of lubricants is key to finding the most suitable option for your individual needs. Water-based lubricants are versatile and safe for most individuals, while silicone-based lubricants provide long-lasting moisture but unfortunately, are not compatible with silicone toys. Oil-based lubricants can also be effective, but caution is advised for those who are prone to thrush and irritation. Unfortunately, oil-based lubricants are not compatible with sex barriers like condoms and dentals dams and not recommended for use with silicone toys.

What to consider when choosing lube for your pleasure practice.

When selecting a personal lubricant, it's essential to consider any potential sensitivities or allergies. E.g. preservatives, fragrances, extracts, etc. Opting for products with minimal additives and gentle formulations can help prevent irritation and awkward situations alike. You might also need to factor in the type of lifestyle you're engaged-in and how you are intimate. E.g. Solo, partnered, with multiple partners, with the presence of toys or barriers and whether you’re participating in vaginal, anal or oral sex, etc. Finding a lube that matches your lifestyle preferences is key to more enjoyable experiences.


What the pH?

It's not an easy task picking the perfect lube to support your specific experience with menopause, however it is one that is greatly beneficial to one's wellbeing. Our advice on water-based lube is to try and find one that is formulated with vaginal pH in mind. Those with vaginas tend to sit between 3.7 and 4.5, however during menopause that natural pH can be upwards of 5 and 6 due to the lack of oestrogen which is fundamental in maintaining an acidic environment. If you’re looking for a water-based lube that can assist in bringing down that pH to a more acidic level, that isn't irritating, we suggest YES VM and Sliquid Satin. Another factor in choosing the right lube is the science of osmolality (without going into the chemistry of it all, this refers to the moisture balance, specifically of water-based lube in relation to the surface it's applied to – like vulvas or anuses). Our skin produces and absorbs moisture at different rates around the body, so we need to find a lube that works with our bodies and supports our skin without taking from it – or exposing us to infection and irritation. Lubricant with a similar osmolality to our vulval, anal or vaginal skin is better for us, it will provide more of a seamless experience during intimacy; rather than further friction or worse, a burning sensation.


Look for lubricants that support your personal needs.

For a body that self-lubricates well, a Sliquid Naturals lube will support you. If you’d like some extra help with hydration and moisturisation, consider blending this with a Sliquids Organics lube. Viamax and Yes WB are great in-between lubes that aren’t overly hydrating but will stay around a little longer.

Silicone lube is wonderful in that we don't have to pay attention to pH or osmolality as these principles don't apply. Instead, it all comes down to ingredients, which thankfully are non-absorbent and very dermatologically-friendly. These lubricants tend to stick around depending on their molecular size and will evaporate when friction ceases. uberlube is our absolute favourite when it comes to silicone-based lube. This formula features added Vitamin E to support the repair of micro-tears, which naturally occur after friction in sensitive or thinning skin.

At the end of the day, navigating menopause is a unique and personal journey.

Incorporating the right lubricant, tailored to your individual preferences, is a simple yet powerful step towards embracing menopause with confidence and joy. By prioritising comfort, minimising discomfort, and embracing the potential for increased pleasure, people can enhance their intimate wellbeing and overall quality of life during this transformative stage.

Looking for more tailored advice on lubricant, menopause or osmolality!? Book a private consultation with a Passionfruit educator or qualified sexologist today.