Ahhh sex, seggs, coitus, making love, etc. It's fun, it’s spicy, it's…messy. For most of us after sex clean up is a chore no one taught us how to do, so we’ve been winging since we started doing it. So, I figured I’d give you all (and myself) the ultimate cheat sheet on how to clean up after sex from your body to your toys to your sheets, I gotcha covered!
The Vulva and Vagina
Yes, they’re two different things. This can be a little tricky and vary from person to person. There’s a lot of myths surrounding proper care of the vagina and vulva. We all know the vagina is a self-cleaning organ and flushes itself out following sex (even if there’s sperm or lube inside), but sometimes the baby batter likes to hang around and surprise ya later.
Products “intended” for intimate care, such as douches and vaginal creams, perfumes, sprays, and soaps, do more harm than good. The outside of the vulva can be cleaned with plain ol’ water! No soap or special products needed!
In fact, douching or using other strong products can disrupt the natural cleaning process and vagina’s microbiome, upping your risk of infection. So, keep all the cleaning on the outside, never inside, and avoid products designed to “clean” the vagina.
Now, sex during menstruation can be a little messier. To make the experience more comfortable for all the parties involved, lay down an old towel or blanket, use a condom, and keep some unscented baby wipes on hand to minimize the mess. If your flow is on the heavier side, you can always hop in the shower or tub!
And please for all that is good in this world, PEE AFTER SEX!!!! During sex, bacteria can get thrust (no pun intended) into the urethra (the tube that carries urine out of the body). If it’s not flushed out, it can cause a painful urinary tract infection (UTI).
People with vaginas have a shorter urethra than penis owners, making them more prone to UTIs. Because of this, you should always pee after sex, even if you don’t feel like you need to. You don’t have to sprint to the bathroom, but do go sooner rather than later (trust me on this one)!
The Penis and Testes
Generally, penis cleaning follows the same rules – avoid strong smelling soaps and use plenty of water. However, if you’re an uncut gem, foreskins need a little more attention. Wash the area with warm water, gently, to remove any seamen or sweat buildup. Unscented, mild baby wipes or a quick rinse in the sink can also be used in a pinch, but be sure to give your member a good wash in the shower when ya get a chance!
Done properly, anal sex is safe, healthy, and a generally a good time! Still, anal sex can cause microscopic tears to the rectum, even if you’re careful. If fecal matter or bacteria get into the tears, it can lead to infection (so lube up).
You should always shower after anal sex and rinse the genital area to rid it of any lingering bacteria. Clean up thoroughly with warm water to remove any bacteria, and penises with foreskins should be cleaned beneath the foreskin and around the entire head to remove trapped bacteria!
If you and/or your partner use sex toys, be sure to clean them after every use! Sex toys can hold onto harmful bacteria that can lead to infections, such as UTIs. It’s also best to avoid using sex toys with multiple partners, but if you do, throw a condom for each toy to stay sanitary.
Sex toys are made of all kinds of materials. To clean them properly, check the cleaning instructions for your specific sex toy to see what’s recommended!For example, silicone products may require a special cleaning solution or may be boiled or put in the dishwasher. Waterproof toys can be cleaned with antibacterial soap, but water-resistant toys shouldn’t be submerged.
In Case You Soak the Sheets
For bedding, use your judgment on whether it needs to be tossed in the wash asap or can wait until the next morning. If you’re concerned about cleanup on a regular basis, keep towels around to lay on the bed.
If sex tends to be messy, consider using a mattress protector. When you’re finished, you can remove the protector and toss it in the laundry, leaving a dry, clean mattress for fresh sheets. It’s a bit of work, but better than dealing with a wet spot soaking the mattress for hours. You can also opt for mattress protector pads, which cover a smaller area.
If you’re worried about excess fluids and the wet spot and don’t want the hassle of a mattress cover, invest in some products to help with the mess like the Dripstick after-sex cleanup sponge that removes fluids (aka semen) from the vagina. You could also keep baby wipes around for quick body cleanup!
Sexy Time Surfaces
Whether you stayed in bed, found your way to the floor, or had a spontaneous session on the kitchen table, you may be wondering how to clean your surfaces. The bed is easy – you may not need to do any cleanup at all.
The floor or other surfaces? They need a little attention for proper hygiene. While you don’t have to jump up immediately to clean, you should disinfect your floor, countertop, table, or wherever else struck your fancy after sex.
Use an antibacterial cleaner that’s appropriate for the material, such as an all-purpose cleaner for the kitchen or a wood cleaner for hardwood floors. Carpets can be cleaned using upholstery cleaner to prevent odors, though it may take some time to dry properly.
Furniture, such as chairs and couches, should be cleaned with an upholstery cleaner designed to sanitize and deodorize. Like the carpet, this can take some time to dry. If possible, use towels or blankets to protect your couch or loveseat from impromptu sex sessions and make cleanup a breeze!
Other Post-Sex Suggestions
Cleaning the vagina after sex is NOT a way to prevent pregnancy (which feels like a scam, but I digress). No amount of cleaning can remove all sperm from the body, which leaves the door to baby town wide open.
If you want to prevent pregnancy, take preventative measures like birth control, condoms, or other prophylactic measures. If an accident happens, consider emergency contraception if desired or call your doctor.
If using condoms, check the condom after sex to make sure it’s intact. Things may seem off, and checking the condom gives you peace of mind that it hasn’t broken or torn during sex. If it has, then you can explore your options.
STIs are a common concern with sex, especially with new partners. If you’re with someone new or engage in sexual activity with multiple partners, it’s important to get regular STI testing and always use barrier forms of protection, such as condoms or cervical caps.
If you engage in anal sex, use water-based lubricants with condoms to reduce the risk of microscopic tears, which can invite infections (like STIs).
And In Case You Need a Summary
After-sex cleanup doesn’t have to be a bummer. Taking simple steps, such as gentle cleaning, peeing after sex, and keeping a few towels and baby wipes (or Dripsticks) around can go a long way in making cleanup quick and convenient.
If you’re using toys or having sex in random places, take some time to sanitize properly after. You also need to pay a little more attention to cleanup and aftercare with anal sex or sex during menstruation. Beyond that, cleanup is about your personal preferences and what works best for you and your partner!!!