For many folks, a healthy sex life is essential to their wellbeing. And, in my experience, a good sex romp with an experienced escort can really boost your mood! But it’s not always as simple as turning up and having a good time.
There are a number of annoying issues and difficulties that can get in the way of having an active sex life. One of these is the issue of latex allergy. If you’re allergic to latex, you may find even a straightforward sexual encounter stressful or uncomfortable.
So, what’s to be done? Here’s a quick introduction to latex allergies and how to manage them when you spend time with escorts and other sex workers.
What is a latex allergy?
Sex is fun, but it isn’t risk-free. Regardless of whether we’re dating long-term or hooking up with casual partners, protecting ourselves from sexually-transmitted infections (STIs) is an important concern. To help avoid STIs, most folks rely on barriers: condoms for sexual intercourse, dental dams for cunnilingus or rimming, and even rubber gloves for vaginal fingering and ass play.
Many of these products are made from latex, a stretchy rubber material that’s very effective at blocking the nasties that can cause STIs. Unfortunately, around 4% of the world’s population are allergic to latex. Upon coming in contact with this substance, their bodies react with an extreme immune response. Latex allergy may cause itchy skin, hives, or even anaphylaxis - a potentially life-threatening condition that swells the throat and can make it difficult to breathe.
If you suffer from a latex allergy, the prospect of seeing a sex worker may make you feel a little anxious. Even a mild reaction can be distracting and even painful.. And a severe allergy could mean that your encounter ends in the back of an ambulance, which certainly isn’t anyone’s idea of a good time. How can you enjoy your sexual adventures with professionals while minimising these risks?
How to deal with a latex allergy (and how not to)
The good news: many clients who suffer from latex allergies still enjoy sex without too much drama. Here are some strategies that you may have considered, and my thoughts on whether they’re useful.
Asking for ‘bareback’ sex is a bad idea
If latex condoms don’t work for you, you may be tempted to ask your favourite provider to avoid using condoms altogether. But this is a really bad idea. Asking (and especially pressuring) a worker for unprotected sex will almost certainly result in an instant ‘no’ and may also cause them to terminate your session.
Providers are generally very strict about their safer sex standards. Staying healthy is essential so we can make a living! By suggesting unsafe sex, you’re asking us to put our health and livelihood at risk, and that’s simply not okay.
Option #1: Ask your sex worker to use non-latex barriers
When it comes to condoms, dental dams, and gloves, there are many types of non-latex safer sex options available. By asking your worker to provide non-latex items, you can lower the risk of an allergic reaction.
Polyisoprene condoms are a popular choice. They’re made from synthetic latex and are designed to be ultra-thin (they’re often referred to as "barely there" condoms). Polyurethane condoms and dental dams are made from a type of plastic and are also very thin, which can make them more comfortable to wear. And nitrile, a kind of synthetic rubber, is also used to make dental dams and surgical gloves. All these materials are just as effective as latex at preventing both pregnancy and STIs.
As an escort, I use latex-free condoms as standard during all my bookings. I like the feel of them better than rubber, as they often conduct more heat and feel thinner than most latex options. Some workers might not carry these, so it’s a good idea to request them beforehand just in case.
Of course, it’s not always possible to discuss sex before you meet your worker in person! But if it’s safe to talk about the particulars, mentioning your latex allergy during the booking process will allow your provider to plan ahead and bring the right safer sex equipment for you.
Don’t forget to consider lube! Many personal lubricants contain latex, so you’ll need to check the ingredients on the packaging before using them.
Option #2: Bring your own safer sex supplies
If you’re not able to discuss safer sex options with your provider beforehand, it’s a good idea to arrive at your session equipped with the tools you need for the job. This means stocking up on latex-free condoms, latex-free dental dams (some workers require barriers for eating pussy or ass) and latex-free gloves if you suspect they’ll be required for fingering or anal play.
These items can be readily found online and in most adult stores. Your local supermarket or drugstore may also stock latex-free condoms, depending on where you shop.
As I mentioned earlier, it’s also essential to bring personal lubricant. Water-based and silicone-based lubricants are the safest options, but always check the ingredients before you buy, to ensure your choice is latex-free.
Option #3: Experiment with sexual activities where barriers aren’t required
If you find yourself in a situation where non-latex barriers aren’t available, it’s not the end of the world, or even your booking. Great sex doesn’t need to involve penetration!
Popular culture often suggests there’s only one way to get it on: penis-in-vagina. But, in reality, people of all genders and sexualities have been having sex in many, many other ways since the dawn of time. If you’re uncomfortable with condom use - whether it’s because of your dick size, trouble getting hard, latex allergy, or simply that you dislike the sensation - there are still plenty of ways to get sexy that don’t require a rubber.
Just a few examples are:
- Mutual masturbation: Nothing is hotter than a bit of digital action! Knowing how to get someone off using your hands is a very special skill. And receiving a hand job can be delightful too.
- Erotic massage: Many providers are skilled in the art of erotic massage, with or without hand relief. It’s an enjoyable way to receive sensual touch without necessarily requiring a condom.
- Sex toys: Many clients love using vibrators, dildos and other adult equipment on their playmates, or having those items used on them. It doesn’t have to be about penetration.Vibrators, sleeves and penis pumps can feel incredible when used with a partner! Note that if you’re sharing toys between partners, you may still need to put a condom on them before use otherwise they are still a safer sex risk.
Safer sex isn’t just about penetration. Some other non-intercourse activities, such as oral sex, still carry a risk of STIs. If you or your provider are concerned about STIs but don’t have access to barriers like condoms, gloves, or dams, you’ll want to avoid that kind of stuff. Even touching yourself and then touching someone else with that same hand can spread STIs! So make sure you avoid any direct contact between eyes, mouth, and gentials, and wash your hands after touching any sticky bits.
Talk to your provider
Regardless of the options you choose, it’s a good idea to let your sex worker know about your latex allergy so that they can minimise risks and help safeguard your health. Ideally, this means saying, ‘By the way, I’m allergic to latex’ in your initial booking enquiry. If you can’t mention sex up-front, you’ll need to wait until you meet your provider in person and they’ve indicated it’s safe to talk about the sexy stuff.
No matter how you have the conversation, remember that there’s no need to feel awkward or embarrassed. An experienced sex worker will be very familiar with this kind of issue. Good sex involves talking about your needs, and any worker will appreciate that you’ve trusted them with this information.
A latex allergy shouldn’t get in the way of your having fun in the bedroom. So, let your provider know about your situation and stock up on latex-free supplies. When you meet your provider in person, be sure to have an honest conversation about what you’d both like to do together! Once you’ve ticked those boxes, you’ll be ready for an enjoyable, anxiety-free play session.