So, what’s the buzz with CBD in lube?

CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of more than 140 cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant. CBD is not the cannabinoid that has the psychoactive effect; that’s THC. Although it delivers a cannabis experience without a high, CBD has been gaining its own ground lately, especially when it comes to creating a buzz in the bedroom. There’s a wealth of anecdotal evidence from enthusiastic users across the world that CBD lube and other intimacy products can be game-changing when it comes to women’s sexual pleasure, and their sexual health.

Revitalising women’s wisdom
Over the past decades, cannabis prohibitions have been easing across the world, including SA. What is steadily coming to light is just how the plant and its uses have been systemically distorted and stigmatised to justify its criminalisation in the 20th Century. There are records dating back to antiquity detailing the use of the cannabis plant as treatment for illness and tonic to maintain wellness. Cannabis was the medicine woman’s mainstay amongst herbs when it came to dealing with women’s sexual and reproductive health. With its effectiveness in reducing stress and anxiety, inflammation and pain, it was part of gynaecological remedies over a lifetime from menstrual cramps and heavy bleeding to painful sex; through childbirth to post-partum care; from treating sexually transmitted infections to easing menopausal conditions. These were historic uses of the cannabis plant, and it is important to note that CBD as a cannabis derivative is not yet regarded as sufficiently scientifically tested for efficacy in treating these ailments today. CBD is not recommended for use by pregnant and breastfeeding moms. However, cannabis was also used for its aphrodisiac properties, a testimony that women’s true pleasure in sex has, for longer than not, been considered a standard of wellness. The integrity of this ancient cannabis lineage, and its potential to support the sexual health of 21st Century women is the driving force behind our partnership with global Foria CBD Intimacy brand.

Reclaiming women’s sexual wellness
Physiotherapist and pelvic health specialist, Candice Jane Langford, the social media innovator of @nurtureyourvagina, points out that when it comes to women’s sexuality, society remains shadowed by pervasive negative sex messages. There is, too often, an arid gulf between women’s own presentation of their oh-so-bold 21st Century sexiness and the hushed reality of their actual sexual experiences. Candice says, “I created @nurtureyourvagina as a safe space, curated with an intention to enlighten, empower and educate followers about topics relating to pelvic and sexual health - topics that are all too often considered taboo or brushed under the ‘rug’. My hope is that this body/sex-positive content will encourage followers to embrace and explore their unique sexuality and sexual experiences in a shame free manner. It’s also important to give individuals, who may be experiencing symptoms of sexual dysfunction, the confidence to seek help by advocating for their comprehensive sexual wellbeing.”

Candice on lube - “Lubrication is wonderful, there is no shame in reaching for lube! We know that lube has the potential to enhance sexual pleasure and satisfaction. Lube not only provides a reduction in friction but also an opportunity to connect with your genitalia through different sensations, explore new senses, play, reduce inhibitions and enjoy sexually relevant stimuli. Lubricants also play an important role in managing discomfort or making up for a lack of natural lubrication. In my opinion, lube should be an essential on your shopping list.”  

Lube + CBD
It’s a match made in sexual heaven. The buzz that CBD brings to the lube party is healthy relaxation, heightened pleasure and a boost of genuine sexual wellness that lasts a lot longer than just a single sexy session. Being well-informed about choosing a quality CBD lube product also brings peace of mind that what you’re silkily applying down there is good for you in more ways than one. U.S pioneer of world-leading CBD lube, Foria, is steadfast in maintaining that broad spectrum CBD trumps CBD isolate. Broad spectrum CBD excludes psycho-active THC but maintains the integrity of the many other natural components of the health-giving cannabis plant such as terpenes and flavonoids. By contrast the processing of CBD isolate, strips away everything else.

When it comes to choosing a quality CBD lube Foria's Intimacy Lubricant  ticks all the right boxes: 
* All ingredients are certified organic and/or are grown free of pesticides
* 100% plant-based ingredients – no synthetics
* Manufactured in a GMP facility with 3rd party lab testing on every batch
* Premium broad spectrum CBD, not CBD isolate
* pH of all Foria’s Intimacy products is 4. (Average vaginal pH range is 3.8-4.5).
* Foria Intimacy Lubricant is coconut oil-based which has an osmolality between 180-340 mOsm/kg. (Normal osmolality of vaginal secretions is 260–290 mOsm/kg)

What you need to know about choosing your lube:
Candice advises, “Take a moment to read the ingredient list. Consider the source of your product of choice and be mindful of harsh ingredients that may cause irritation. The WHO (World Health Organization) recommends selecting a lubrication that has a pH 4.5 for vaginal use and less than pH 7 for rectal use. These factors will aid in helping you maintain natural vaginal pH and tissue integrity.”

Lubes are either:
Water based - readily available, toy compatible but require repeated applications and contain additives
Oil based (avoid petroleum based) - not latex compatible, last longer than water based, typically natural and/or organic, can be hydrating
Silicone based - more expensive, not compatible with silicone toys, lasts the longest, can be used in water, not absorbed and typically pure

“When purchasing any new item we need to be mindful that we are all different and have different sensitivities to ingredients,” says Candice. “Before using a new lube do a patch test on your inner arm, and then on your inner thigh if you are particularly sensitive. Rub it in for at least 2 minutes and monitor to see if you have any adverse effects.”

TOP @nutureyourvagina TIPS

Tune in and listen to your body – “Our bodies have a way of communicating with us, making us aware of any areas that may need a little more attention. Poor body image or other discomforts around sex may lead to dissociation when it comes to intimacy, making it difficult to be present and possibly impacting your ability to experience pleasure or reach orgasm. Taking the time to connect to your body by exploring your anatomy, addressing body image or practicing breath work or other mindfulness techniques.”

Grant yourself permission for pleasure – “Pleasure is not limited to sex and pleasure should not make you feel guilty. It’s not a ‘guilty pleasure’; it’s pleasure and you shouldn’t feel ashamed for embracing it! Women’s pleasure is not dependent on ‘sex’, nor is it in the hands of our sexual partner as opposed to our own. These ideas result in a sense of guilt if we indulge in a little self-pleasure, whether that’s treating yourself to a spa day or masturbation. So my advice is to be gentle with yourself and grant yourself permission for pleasure.”

Explore the meaning of ‘sex’ – “What does ‘sex’ mean to you, better yet, what does ‘good sex’ mean to you? We need to acknowledge that sex is not just penis in vagina (PIV) intercourse. Sex is inclusive of all that brings you pleasure. So when your partner says; ‘let’s have sex’ that might just be cunnilingus and that’s okay!”

Sexual self-care includes management of sexual concerns – “I beg you, please don’t push through pain! Sex should not be painful, unless that is your sexual preference, as in bondage. If you have concerns or queries please chat to a sexual health practitioner who is passionate about sexual wellbeing and a willing advocate for your comprehensive care. ‘Have a glass of wine and relax’ or ‘it’s all in your head’ are NOT effective methods of management for dyspareunia (painful intercourse).

Shift your focus from orgasm to pleasure - We tend to put a lot of pressure on ourselves to achieve a particular outcome during intimacy. This outcome may be subconsciously shaped by societal views, social media or porn. The expectation to have a screaming, linen-clenching, back arching orgasm with PIV sex, in 5 minutes derives from a lack of exposure to empowering and realistic sex positive content. When we don’t meet these expectations, we might fake an orgasm (reinforcing intimacy which does not serve you) or we put pressure on ourselves and may come to believe that there is something wrong with us. This interplay of pressure and expectation might impact your ability to be present and experience pleasure.”