Is a Jelly Dildo Safe?

By Isabelle Uren / July 27, 2022

The quick and fast answer to ‘Is a jelly dildo safe?’ is no!

Yes, jelly dildos might look and feel fun, but using them can have some pretty serious consequences for your health. This post will cover all you need to know about the dangers of jelly sex toys and what to shop for instead! Sex and masturbation should always be both safe and satisfying. And, even more importantly, it definitely should not put you in unnecessary danger.

You might be surprised to find out that sex toy materials are not regulated. Pretty wild right! These products that we used very intimately and come into contact with very absorbent areas of our bodies are not subject to any rules.

The unwillingness to acknowledge sex toy use has meant that they have fallen through the gaps in regulation. Company’s get away with making sub-standard, dangerous sex toys by labelling them as ‘For Novelty Use Only.’ Essentially, this means they do not get the rigorous safety testing and regulations needed to ensure what you are putting inside you is actually safe.

Why are jelly dildos not safe?

Some materials are bigger offenders than others, but jelly has to be one of the worst ones out there. Here are some of the main problems with jelly sex toys.

1. Jelly is an unstable material.

Jelly rubber is unstable, meaning it can degrade over time and leach chemicals into your body. They can also react to other things around them, including other sex toys and have even been known to melt. Definitely not what you want in a sex toy.

2. It contains phthalates and other toxic chemicals.

Jelly dildos often contain phthalates that can leak out into your body. These are a family of plasticizers that manufacturers use to make plastics more flexible. Phthalates are what give jelly dildos their soft jelly-like quality. Unfortunately, phthalates have numerous dangerous side effects. Among other things, certain phthalates are known endocrine disruptors, meaning they can effect our hormonal system and lead to reproductive issues and carcinogens. They are even prohibited children’s toys in the US. Not to mention, some are even banned completely in Europe, so it’s really baffling that we are still allowing them in our sex toys!

Source: Dildos, Artificial Vaginas, and Phthalates: How Toxic Sex Toys Illustrate a Broader Problem for Consumer Protection

3. Jelly dildos are porous.

Jelly rubber is a porous material, meaning it is fully tiny holes, or pores. It is impossible to fully clean and dry porous materials, and unlike non-porous materials, you cannot sterilize them. Over time, these pores provide the perfect breeding place for all kinds of germs and mold to grow and multiply. Combine that with the fact your bodily fluids are full of bacteria and things can get pretty nasty pretty quickly.

4. It can cause burns or reactions.

Many people have experienced chemical burns and painful reactions to jelly sex toys over the years. This can range from mild itching right up to more severe burns. Your genital skin is very thin and sensitive and much easier to damage, and, as such, we need to be more careful about what comes into contact with it.

5. They can absorb and give off some very nasty smells.

If you’ve ever opened a jelly sex toy, it’s hard not to notice the chemical smells that come off it. These should be seen as warning fumes! Not to mention, due to unstable and porous nature of jelly rubber, it can also absorb some pretty nasty smells over time. Yeah, really doesn’t sound that sexy, does it?

Is a Jelly Dildo Safe if I Use a Condom?

The research into jelly dildos in general is pretty scant, but given the unstable, reactive nature of jelly dildos, I wouldn’t recommend using them with a condom as the two materials could degrade each other.

Check Those Sex Toy Labels

Sex toy companies have been able to make up their own labels and they have really used that to their advantage. Some sex toy companies don’t even disclose exactly what their products are made of. Maybe they are emulating the closely guarded secrets of The Colonel or Coca Cola. Or maybe they think the air of mystery adds to the sex appeal. Or maybe, just maybe, they are trying to conceal the fact they are using sub-par materials that are not safe for your body!

The only way to know if a sex toy is safe is to find out which specific materials it is made of. Next I’ll go through which materials are safe, so you can be a safe and savvy sex toy shopper!

But before we get to that, here are few more sex toy materials to avoid:

  • Rubber
  • PVC
  • Vinyl
  • Soft plastics
  • Blends

I also wouldn’t recommend purchasing dildos or butt plugs (or anything insertable) made with TPR/TPE, as although they phthalate-free, they are still porous. Many masturbation sleeves are made from TPR/TPE or the company’s own brand flesh-like blend — this is less problematic as you are not inserting them into your body, but you should still pay close attention when cleaning and drying them.

If Jelly Dildo’s Aren’t Safe, What Should You Buy Instead?

Ok so I’ve ranted enough about why jelly dildos aren’t safe and are quite possibly the absolute worst sex toy material. Now, let’s focus on the good stuff! Luckily for us, there are plenty of safe sex toy materials out there. Here are the best sex toy materials you can buy and some of my top products for each!

Silicone

Silicone is the most similar to jelly in terms of how it feels. However, unlike jelly, silicone is stable and it doesn’t react with your body. It is also non-toxic and non-porous, meaning it can be cleaned and even sterilized! It checks all the boxes! Not to mention, it can be used to create different levels of rigidity from soft and squishy right up to firm.

Medical grade silicone is the highest quality, but anything that is 100% silicone is great!

Silicone dildos can be made into all sorts of shapes and sizes, so whether you crave realism or want a fantasy dildo to transport you to another world, there’s a silicone dildo for you! Dual density dildos are some of the most realistic feeling dildos out there, as I found out firsthand when I fell in love with the Vixen Mustang!

One of the appeals of jelly dildos is the price — they are usually very cheap. However, there are more and more affordable silicone dildos available. Here are my top three silicone dildos at different price points.

Cheap Silicone Dildo

This silicone dildo from Lovehoney is such a bargain at just under $25 (correct at the time of writing). This 7-inch beauty features realistic textural details and even changes color!

Mid-Range Silicone Dildo

Another personal favorite, the Tantus Charmer is a non-realistic silicone dildo with a rippling texture that massages with each movement.

Luxury Silicone Dildo

My absolute favorite dildo to date! The Vixen Mustang is a dual density dildo, giving it an incredibly lifelike feeling. It’s also available in three skin tones, as well as rainbow tie dye.

Stainless Steel Sex Toys

Stainless steel is another non-toxic, non-porous sex toy material, and one that is built to last! While you might think stainless steel doesn’t sound that appealing, it actually has many great qualities. Firstly, the rigidity and weight of it makes ideal for more intense internal massage targeting the g-spot or p-spot. Secondly, you can heat it or cool it in water to experiment with temperature play. Unlike silicone, stainless steel is compatible with types of lubrication. Lastly, stainless steel sex toys look incredibly beautiful! The sleek shiny stainless steel dildos and butt plugs look so shiny and exciting!

Njoy are famous for their range of incredible stainless steel sex toys. Here are three of their top products.

Stainless Steel Dildo

Also known as the squirting wand, the Pure Wand is a double ended dildo, featuring two different sized balls at each end.

Stainless Steel Plug

The Pure Plug is a stainless steel butt plug that comes in three different sizes and provides an intensely satisfying feeling of fullness.

Stainless Steel Prostate Plug

The Prostate Plug is specifically shaped to target the sensitive sweet spot of the prostate.

Borosilicate Glass Sex Toys

Glass probably isn’t the first material that springs to mind when you think of sex toys but it really is one of the best! And yes, borosilicate is a totally safe sex toy material! It has many of the same qualities as stainless steel — it’s non-toxic, non-porous, can be heated and cooled and is compatible with all lubes. Glass also has the added advantage that it can clear or colored. Some glass dildos could definitely pass as works of art!

Crystal Heart Glass Dildo

This smooth glass heart wand features a bulbous tip and ridges for some extra stimulating massage and is topped with a cute heart handle. It’s suitable for both vaginal and anal play and is a great temperature play tool!

Wood Sex Toys

Another unlikely and less common sex toy material that can actually be really great! When properly treated, wood can be turned into some pretty amazing sex toys! Dee Lee Doo make wooden dildos that are safe both safe your body and environmentally friendly!

This g-spot dildo is called the Habu and it is hand crafted from beautifully striped Zebrano hardwood.