Like most things in life, my first encounter with latex happened because of a guy. Darien* was really into fetish, to the extent to which his favourite activities were listing off the millions of things he liked doing, complaining that I couldn’t do the same, and telling me off about it.
Now, this doesn’t mean that I hadn’t always wanted to try the fetishes on Darien’s list. I had. The truth was, that I’d never had the opportunity to. So, like the big fashion-lover I am, I refused to let this one pass, and decided to buy some wearable latex.
Sooner rather than later, I found myself on the obvious place to source things sexual: the Lovehoney website. Sue me, they do a great student discount. Anyway, following several internal debates on whether I should go ‘open cup’ or tasteful, I decided to buy this ‘Rubber Girl Plunge Neck Crotchless Latex Body’. Versatile enough to be worn in public, it also has an opening at the crotch for ‘easy access’.
Unfortunately for Darien, just as I was about to surprise him with my new purchase, he called it quits on me. Darien, if you’re reading this, sucks to be you. You missed out on a once in a lifetime opportunity, and you didn’t even know it. Suddenly, I was left with this awesome toy but no one to show it off to. I had to learn to enjoy it by myself.
The experience taught me a lot about self-care and taking charge of my own pleasure. I’d been waiting all this time for the perfect person to try new things with, when all along that person could’ve been me. I guess my point is that latex is fun, and it can make you feel powerful. You don’t need to have a partner to mess around with it. Don’t get me wrong, partner-play has its own perks. I’ve shown a picture of me wearing the body to a couple of people since then, and one guy even offered to pay the cost price so he could rip it off my back. Nevertheless, nothing beats staring at yourself in the mirror, latex-clad and beaming, looking like the ultimate badass. Every one of us is a badass, including me, and latex helped me to remember that.
Tips for getting started:
1. Make sure that you’re buying real latex.
‘Latex-look’ PVC (aka. Vinyl) is commonly passed off as the real thing, but there are some key differences. Genuine latex is a natural material; it’s biodegradable and sustainable. It feels different on the skin, because it’s softer and more sensuous. On the other hand, PVC is a stiffer man-made material. Consequently, it doesn’t fulfill the ‘second skin’ brief quite as well. However, PVC is a great dupe for those of you with a latex allergy. Essentially, just make sure to check what you’re buying before you click ‘add to basket’. It’s also worth remembering that extreme heat and light can corrode latex. To prolong its longevity, store your garment in a cool dark space.
2. Lube, lube, and more lube. Specifically, silicone lube.
Latex is rubber, so when it arrives it’s pretty dull looking. That glossy sheen you see in the photos? It doesn’t come in the package. To get your latex nice and shiny, rub it over with some silicone lube. You’ll also need the lube to get the latex on in the first place; the material is tight and prone to ripping. Grease up the inside, and it will slide right on; this is the best way to avoid chafing. Also be aware that with some products, wedgies are inevitable.
3. Latex can be fashionable; it doesn’t have to be sexual.
Latex comes in a lot of different shapes and sizes; it can even be modest. Long frilly and baggy latex skirts are hardly a rarity on the market. For example, William Wilde is a London-based designer who specialises in exactly this kind of latex. He’s dressed the likes of Taylor Swift, in the ‘Look What you Made Me Do’ video, and Nicki Minaj. Some of his dresses are indistinguishable from the average evening gown. Undoubtedly, latex has been making a splash in the high fashion world recently. YSL’s latex leggings were plastered all over social media, as well as the model’s thighs and bum.
*Name changed for personal protection.