Lubrication can be very helpful to make sex less painful and more pleasurable. It doesn't mean something is wrong with you if you need lubrication.
There are times in life when the vagina produces less natural lubrication, even when aroused. This is common in postpartum, while breast/chestfeeding or pumping and after menopause. Estrogen levels are lower during these times and estrogen is a big contributor to lubrication.
What should I look for in a lubrication?
There are three categories of lubricants:
They all serve their purposes and often it comes down to personal preference.
Water Based Lubricant
Water based is the most common and most compatible. Some people say it absorbs too quickly and some people don't like certain brands because they feel too runny. Again, all personal preferences.
Silicone Based Lubricant
Silicone based lubricant some people prefer because they say it feels really silky and doesn't absorb into the body as quickly. Some others say it is too runny. Again, personal preference. One of my favorite silicone based brands is Uberlube.
Silicone based lube will break down silicone toys/tools, so if you are using lube with a silicone toy or tool be sure to use a water based lubricant. The silicone in the lubrication will over time break down the silicone in the toy or tool.
Oil Based Lubricant
Oil based lubricants can be all natural like olive oil or coconut oil. Be sure to use a pure version of these oils. Also know they won't be absorbed into the body and the body will expel them when you are finished. That is ok and normal. There is a plant-based version of Ah Yes brand that is oil based.
If you use oil or an oil based lubrication know it is NOT latex condom compatible. This is very important if you are trying to prevent pregnancy. The oil will break down the latex material of the condom.
Some other ingredients to avoid in your lubricant are: paraben, glycerin, phthalates which can be harmful to the body and reproductive system. These ingredients have been in beauty products for many years and now we are realizing that they can be harmful and we want to keep our pelvis' healthy and happy.