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  • Xanthan Gum

    I've tried Astroglide and Wet (both the water and silicone based kinds) but I didn't think either was good enough to continue spending money on them. Some good, viscous saliva always seemed to do the job better. Suits me just fine as I've always been the do-it-myself sort of guy. The only problem with that is that I can almost never produce as much of it as I need. Frustrating, so frustrating.

    In desperation I began looking for homemade lube recipes. I found very little, but one of the recipes I did find included xanthan gum. Xanthan gum... hmm... I'd bought a bag of it a year or two back because I thought it might help me bake a loaf of bread with a tougher crust and chewier texture, but it didn't work and it has been gathering dust ever since.

    Then I did some reading. Xanthan gum is a very interesting subtance. Developed after extensive research by the US Department of Agriculture. Used both in food products as a stabilizer and in heavy industry as a lubricant. A lubricant? Really? The xanthan gum I'd bought at the grocery store came as a powder. I'd never tried seeing what happened when I dissolved it all by itself in water. So I tried it and I was blown away. The consistency, while not as good as that of saliva, was way better than the storebought lubes.

    I've now been using it as a lube with my fleshlight for about 2 weeks, and I'm quickly coming to regard it as the best thing that has happened to my sex life all year. The most wonderful thing about it is how little xanthan gum powder is needed. A little seems to go a long way. I've found that I only need to add 1/4 teaspoon of powder (tops) to 1/2 cup of water in order to yield a mixture that is neither too viscous nor too runny. I like this stuff so much that I've settled into the habit of mixing up a 50ml batch of this stuff every day.

    What I'm still trying to figure out is why this stuff isn't more popular and talked about as a sexual lubricant. I've noticed that some commercial brands of lubricant list it as an ingredient, and of course there's the recipe I got the idea from, but that's about it. Obviously it's biologically friendly since it's used all over the place as a food additive. I don't get it -- seems like one of the best kept secrets on the Internet to me.

  • #2
    Hmnm, sounds interesting. I might give it a try. Is it readily available in stores? I've never seen it before.

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    • #3
      Gums in lubricants

      If you read the ingredients of many commercial water-based lubricants very closely,
      you'll see that they have some type of gum as a thickening/gelling agent:
      Locust bean gum (E410)
      Guar gum (E412)
      Gum arabic (E414)
      Xanthan gum (E415)

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      • #4
        Originally posted by chives
        Hmnm, sounds interesting. I might give it a try. Is it readily available in stores? I've never seen it before.
        I got my packet at a Whole Foods store. I haven't looked for it since because the first packet I bought is lasting me so long. You might have to look in a place where they sell "special needs" sort of baking items, because xanthan gum is a common ingredient in gluten-free bread recipes and such.

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        • #5
          This sounds very interesting. You compared its consitency to saliva, and said it beats any other water-based lube out there. Personally, I can't stand water-based lubes, and I've tried just about every one. My main problem is how they get sticky and stringy when they start to dry up. Does your homebrew lube have this problem? Can you tell us which inserts you use and how this lube works in them compared to the store-bought lubes you've tried?

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          • #6
            homemade lube recipe

            Well I went out to the store and got some xanthan gum. It really is incredibly slick. I decided to mix up some homemade lube. Here's the modified recipe I came up with based on Noctua's. It really is excellent and very economical. An 8 oz bag of xanthan gum powerder is about $10 which contains 75 teaspoons of powder. I also used glycerin for which I paid $2 for 4 oz.
            • 1 cup water
            • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum powder
            • 4 oz glycerin
            12 oz lube = $2.14
            I had to use a hand held blender thing to get the power totally disolved. Freshly blended the aeration makes it whitish and bubbly, a lot like semen really. Finally I added a few drops of grapefruit seed extract as a preservative. This is as good or better than any commercial lube I've tried. Try it! You can use more or less xanthan depending how thick and slippery you like it. It glycerin is optional I guess but I think it makes it just perfect. Also I do recomend some GSE or something for perservative otherwise you might want to store it in the fridge or just make a tiny bit at a time.

            Thanks so much Noctua for the tip!
            Last edited by chives; 07-06-2006, 09:50 PM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by liftoff
              Personally, I can't stand water-based lubes, and I've tried just about every one. My main problem is how they get sticky and stringy when they start to dry up. Does your homebrew lube have this problem?
              That's exactly what I didn't like about the water-based lubes I've bought... when they started to dry up, I'd always feel like I was covered in an uncomfortable layer of gooey, sugary carmel or something. Now, while it may just be my imagination that my xanthan gum lube stays wet longer, it's true that it doesn't stay wet forever. It does eventually dry up. But the strange and wonderful thing about xanthan gum is that it seems to "dry smooth". I've taken notice of this when I go to wash my hands after a torrid night of passion with my fleshlight: my hands feel fairly dry and clean, but once I put them under the running water they become really slippery and I can tell that they were caked with a thin layer of xanthan gum.

              Originally posted by liftoff
              Can you tell us which inserts you use and how this lube works in them compared to the store-bought lubes you've tried?
              So far I've only used it in a WW lady, but I have no reason to believe it wouldn't work just as well whenever I feel like using an SR or SB again. It has been a long time since I've had a bottle of storebought lube on hand, and the way I use the fleshlight has evolved a lot since then, so I'm afraid I can't draw any direct comparison. All I can say is that, in the few weeks I've been using xanthan gum, I have yet to run into that dry, tacky feeling I'd always get with the bottle of Astroglide I tried. And as a side bonus, it doesn't smell funny either .

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              • #8
                Originally posted by chives
                I had to use a hand held blender thing to get the power totally disolved. Freshly blended the aeration makes it whitish and bubbly, a lot like semen really.
                Ha! Funny you should mention that, Chives. That was my first reaction precisely.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Noctua
                  All I can say is that, in the few weeks I've been using xanthan gum, I have yet to run into that dry, tacky feeling I'd always get with the bottle of Astroglide I tried. And as a side bonus, it doesn't smell funny either .
                  Perfect! I'll have to pick some of this stuff up this weekend and report back how it works out for me...

                  With regard to getting the ingredients dissolved, I wonder if it would help to add it to hot or boiling water, such as when you're trying to add sugar to water. I didn't see you or chives mention whether you heated the water up before mixing.

                  Great stuff guys!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by liftoff
                    Perfect! I'll have to pick some of this stuff up this weekend and report back how it works out for me...

                    With regard to getting the ingredients dissolved, I wonder if it would help to add it to hot or boiling water, such as when you're trying to add sugar to water. I didn't see you or chives mention whether you heated the water up before mixing.

                    Great stuff guys!
                    I didn't heat it up I just blended it really well. It's a good idea though I bet heating it would help it disolve much more easily.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by liftoff
                      Perfect! I'll have to pick some of this stuff up this weekend and report back how it works out for me...

                      With regard to getting the ingredients dissolved, I wonder if it would help to add it to hot or boiling water, such as when you're trying to add sugar to water. I didn't see you or chives mention whether you heated the water up before mixing.

                      Great stuff guys!
                      That is simple Grade 7 Science right there. To dissolve a solid in a liquid better, you need to add heat, faster stirring or blending, or finer ground up solid, if it is a powder using hot water should help mix it greatly!

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                      • #12
                        I mix mine in a conical laboratory flask. Sometimes I place the flask on top of my monitor's power transformer, which keeps it fairly warm if left there for a while.

                        Xanthan gum does tend to clump together -- sometimes more, sometimes less depending on how careful you are when you're mixing it in. The clumps disappear eventually as water seeps into them, and I'm sure heat helps clarify the mixture faster, but it hasn't been much of an issue for me. Sometimes I don't think far enough ahead and have to mix some up only minutes before using it, but as long as I mix the powder in slowly and shake the flask vigorously for about 1/2 minute to a minute, I never have a problem with lumps.

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                        • #13
                          Do you chemists have a recommendation for enhancement by adding flavorings and/or aromatic substances?

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by antenna
                            Do you chemists have a recommendation for enhancement by adding flavorings and/or aromatic substances?
                            There is a post on the forum somwhere by a chemist who said that essential oils in small amounts won't hurt the fleshlight. So I can imagine you could add all kinds of different things like mint, or cinnamon. You could also add artificial sweetener, and for fruit flavors maybe coolaid powder or something.
                            Last edited by chives; 07-09-2006, 02:25 PM.

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                            • #15
                              can someone advise me on where to get xanthan gum? I cannot find it in grocery stores and kmarts

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