With the warmer months approaching, you might have started a ritual cleaning of your home. Washing your windows to let in more sunlight and organizing your closet are excellent ideas, but you might be skipping a very important task—cleaning your sex toys.

Even if your toys are used by a single person, it’s a great idea to know how to properly care for and clean your more intimate possessions. Improperly sanitized sex toys can easily build up bacteria that can lead to infections and can even transmit diseases when shared. So, we’ve asked our toy experts and they’ve passed down some important tricks of the trade to help you from start to finish.

When you first receive your sex toy, make sure you clean it prior to use. Also, check your toys to make sure there are no rips in the silicone, rubber, or jelly, and look over your glass and hard plastic toys to make sure there are no cracks. Any tears or cracks in the product can trap bacteria and cannot be cleaned properly.

After use, clean up should happen immediately—or as soon as you can move! While it isn’t required, a quality sex toy cleaner is an excellent investment and helps assure a clean toy every time. We’re fans of System JO Antibacterial Toy Cleaner, which is an excecllent foam soap, and Swiss Navy Toy and Body Cleaner, which is a spray designed to remove even the most stubborn lubrication. We recommend caution when choosing a lube, as some silicone-based lubricants can harm silicone toys.

Of course, a toy cleaner might not be the answer for every toy on the market. Most toys can be cleaned with sex toy cleaner or with a gentle antibacterial soap, but there are few other features depending on the material your toy is made from, which is why we’ve put together a handy cheat-sheet of cleaning tips.

Sex Toys Made of Rubber or Jelly: Sex toys that are made of rubber or jelly are porous and can trap dirt and bacteria. If you are going to use antibacterial soap, make sure all the soap is gone completely from the product to prevent any damage to the toy or irritation to you. Let air dry or wipe with soft cloth.

Sex Toys Made of Silicone: Products made of silicone are non-porous, which means they do not absorb bacteria like jelly toys. Silicone sex toys that are not battery operated or do not contain an electrical system can be boiled for about two minutes for a thorough cleaning. Afterwards, let air dry or wipe with soft cloth.

Sex Toys Made of Hard Plastic or Acrylic: These materials work well with a sex toy cleaner or gentle antibacterial soap and water. Let air dry or wipe down with a soft cloth.

Sex Toys Made of Glass, Pyrex, or Stainless Steel: Wiping your toy toy down with sex toy cleaner or anitbacterial soap and water is great, but you can also boil or place your glass or Pyrex toys in the dishwasher if they do not contain a battery compartment or any electrical system.

Sex Toys Made of Realistic Materials: These types of materials are typically used in erection rings and male masturbation toys, such as Tenga sleeves. After a thorough cleaning with warm water and antibacterial soap, let the product air dry completely. As an optional addition, you can apply a light coating of cornstarch to the product to keep the product maintained and fresh.

Wondering about storage? With any sex toy, we advise that you store it in a cool, dry area, avoiding direct sunlight and taking out any removable batteries prior to storing. If you prefer to keep your toys away from prying eyes, check out theTallulah Toy Case, which features a helpful lock and key, or the Stashe Toy Pillow, which hides your toys in plain sight for easy access.

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