Pink is a lube marketed towards women, and their girly packaging tries to incorporate playfulness and class in an effort to make a product that wouldn’t look out of place on a bedside table. Their packaging emulates beauty products like face creams or perfume, and the hyper-femme branding is analogous to many cosmetics. No wonder Pink lubes are popular – they’re pretty discreet and come in a bunch of different incarnations that are made to suit many bodies and preferences.
I got a sample sachet of Pink Water, a glycerine- and paraben-free, hypoallergenic lubricant that’s designed to mimic the vagina’s natural lubrication, to test out for SGP. Pink’s whole brand ethos is about making sensual products that are safe for women, but do they deliver with this product?
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Pink Water is advertised as being unscented, but the first thing I noticed was the fresh, clean smell of the lube. I think it comes from the plant extracts (aloe, oat, ginseng and guarana) that are supposedly added to minimize irritation and aid in sensation. It smells really good – “fresh” is the only word I can really use to adequately describe it, but the closest thing to compare it to might be that its kind of … lemony? Not in that it smells like lemons, but just because it’s a similarly light and herbal and clean-smelling. It’s actually really nice!
The texture is slick and slippery without the almost greasy feel that comes with silicone lubes, so if you’re into a little extra slipperiness without any additional heaviness, you’ll probably enjoy the feel of this lubricant! However, it does taste suuuper bad – really bitter, probably from the aloe vera. It’s just like when my cousin tricked me into taking a bite out of an aloe plant, and I had to rinse my mouth out with seawater. So it’s pretty gross. Word for the wise: don’t use this lube for manual stimulation and then switch to oral, because you will have a bad time. Like, I can imagine it would make a really funny prank for a partner, but for on-the-reg oral use? Nah.
The lube is light, clear in colour and drippy in consistency, so adds some nice slipperiness that is great for some external stimulation. It functions the same way as any regular water-based lube; so works well with toys or fingers to provide some extra glide that feels pretty much the same as vulva-produced moisture, just more of it. Yay! It’s also safe for use with condoms and all types of toys, although I think you’d want something a little thicker if you want to use it with hard toys made out of steel or glass. Maybe that’s just a personal preference of mine, but my bod always appreciates a little extra cushion for internal stim. Of course, if you want a lube for anal play, you might wish to switch to something a little thicker and longer-lasting – water-based lubricants need to be reapplied more often than silicone equivalents, and delicate anal tissues often need some extra TLC.
Afterwards, it dries to pretty much nothing. It does get very slightly tacky until it has evaporated entirely, at which point it becomes unnoticeable. If you don’t have time to clean up before needing to throw clothes on and pay for the post-sexuals takeout, this will probably help you feel a bit more comfortable about it.
But what about the propylene glycol?
Unfortunately, one of the first things I noticed about Pink Water was that the second ingredient listed was propylene glycol; a chemical that’s on the ‘avoid’ list for lube ingredients. This was confusing because the whole Pink brand is built on safety and comfort for intimate areas; the brand avoids other harmful ingredients like glycerine and parabens entirely, so why were they falling back on this apparent no-no?
Fortunately, my Google-Fu is strong, so I investigated the matter. It turns out that the ingredient was made to prevent stuff from drying out, so it makes sense that it’s in lube. Lubezilla claims that the food-grade propylene glycol is not harmful, especially in the relatively small amounts found in sensual products, and therefore is safe for most people. However, the source does state that it can cause some irritation for sensitive users. Conversely, Simply Slick says that the ingredient is super great at permeating cell membranes and is used in e-cigarettes to help deliver nicotine. This article speculates that, when combined with parabens, propylene glycol would help these nasties get into our bodies more easily. Yes, Pink Water doesn’t contain any parabens (yay), but the source also worries about the ingredients potentially facilitating the transferal of STIs. Of course, if you’re using barriers, this doesn’t apply to you either.
The moral of the story? I guess you need to decide for yourself! Do your research, flex that Google-Fu, and embark on a course of action that makes sense to you. For me though? While I enjoyed the feel of this lube, I will be avoiding propylene glycol in future – just in case.
Get it at The White Unicorn for $13!
Free shipping on orders over $100.
We’d recommend one of our favorite lubricants, Sliquid, instead.
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