If you like the look of shiny clothing, you may have already tried PVC or patent leather. The next step for many people is trying latex or rubber. You don't have to be a hardened fetishist or fashionista to try latex and this guide will help you choose the right size latex wear and explain how to put it on.
Before you start: check that you do not have a latex allergy. Cut cheap latex gloves into strips and place them in various places against your skin (under a bra strap, inside a sock, inside a waistband) and, after an hour or two, check for any signs of irritation.
You may be thinking; “But I've used condoms, I know I'm not allergic.” You should still patch test various parts of your body before encasing yourself in the stuff, just to be sure.
How to Buy Latex Clothing
There are generally two types of latex garment: glued and the moulded.
Moulded latex is most common. This is where liquid rubber is poured into moulds to make one seamless garment. Moulded latex tend to be much less expensive, are slightly thicker and are harder to puncture or tear.
Glued latex is made from sheets of latex that have been cut to size and put together by hand using adhesives. Glued garments generally fit slightly better, come in more interesting shapes and varieties and polish to a higher shine.
If you are new to latex, it is wise to start with moulded garments. They are thicker and generally deteriorate at a much lesser pace. One downside is that they very rarely have zips or any kind of fastener, which means wriggling your way in and out.
Rubber has an incredible stretch that flattens lumps and bumps, giving you a smoother silhouette. Think of rubber or latex like Lycra, stretching to fit your body.
Rubber clothing sizes already take stretch into account, so if you’re a size 12-14, buy the size labelled to fit a size 12-14. When it arrives though, expect it to be smaller than you are. Just like you’d expect from a pair of Lycra shorts.
As a general rule, the measurements of your latex need to be 2-3 inches smaller than your own to give you a great skintight fit. Women can get a little more squeeze factor out of their boobs, especially if there’s a zip-up front, so up to 4 inches smaller than your full breast measurement should work without flattening your chest.
If you’re still not sure it’ll fit when it arrives, you can measure it to make sure. Take measurements from your new latex clothing at all the important points - like waist, hips, chest - and then measure yourself. If after measuring your garment you still think the item is too big or too small, just return it to us for a different size.
How to Wear Latex
Because latex rubber is a stretch-to-fit fabric it can be quite tricky to get in and out of. It’s also easy to damage if you’re not careful.
Before you start dressing in rubber, take a few safety precautions. Firstly, don’t try dressing in rubber for the first time when you’re on your own. Have a friend or partner help you. Because the fabric has a tendency to bunch up, it can create a thick band which can restrict your breathing or be awkward to get back out of. Secondly, because rubber is not breathable, you need to make sure you’re really careful pulling it over your head. You really don’t want to get it stuck covering your face.
Before you dress take a look at the garment and think logically about how best to put it on. A t-shirt or top will need to go up over your head but most other things are best tackled feet first. If you’re bottom heavy, you may prefer to dress over the head and if you’re top heavy, feet first is easier. A little time spent thinking about how the garment will slip on makes dressing quicker, easier and safer.
Next, you need to prepare the garment so you can slip into it easily. You can use a renewer powder or cornflour to help you get dressed, or a specialist latex dressing aid like the Pjur Cult Easy Latex Dressing Aid 100ml (£12.99) or silicone lubricant to help keep things slick.
Powder is better for tops or anything that go over your head, because you don’t want to ruin your hairstyle or make-up with lube. The down-side is that it makes your rubber more dull and difficult to shine. Because of this, dressing aids and silicone lube are much more popular with latex devotees.
Once you’ve chosen your lube, turn your garment inside out and lube it up. You only need a very thin coating of lube on the inside to help you dress, so apply it sparingly all over and then flip it back around the right way. If you’re using powder renewer or cornflour, you need to apply a little to your body as well. You might want to do the same with dressing aid or silicone lube, but normally you’ve got enough on the clothing to do the job.
Once you, your garment, or both are good and lubed, you’re ready to get dressed.
It’s best to be completely naked when you get started as you won’t wear underwear underneath rubber. The fit is so tight that even the smallest G-string will give you VPL. Dress slowly and carefully, ensuring that the latex doesn’t bunch up as you go. You can either slowly ease the rubber up bit-by-bit, ensuring it doesn’t bunch up. Another way to do it is by sliding your hands inside the garment, pushing the rubber away from your body with the back of your hand and lifting it up and onto your body.
If you’re finding it difficult, stop for a bit and let the latex warm up. What you don’t want to do is pinch the latex to pull it upward as this can cause it to split. The main causes of damage to rubber are stretching the rubber too much too soon, or accidentally puncturing it with your nails.
Once your garment is in place, you can then adjust the fit by placing your hands inside the garment and use the backs of your hands to push or pull the clothing into place. A final gentle tug at the hem should finish the job.
How to Shine Latex
Latex needs shining to give it a glossy finish. To get that high-shine, you need to massage a specially formulated latex shiner or a silicone lubricant into the surface.
Most latex shiners suggest using a polishing cloth but you may prefer a more hands-on approach. Not only does it mean you waste less, but it also feels much nicer to get hands on. The act of shining the latex can be incredibly erotic - especially if you’re lucky enough to have someone else doing it for you! A word of warning though: shining up your latex can feel pretty cold, so you might want to pop your shiner in a bowl of hot water to warm it up first.
Before you start you want to make sure you don’t have any powder on the outside of the latex. If there is any powder, wipe over with a wet cloth to remove it before you start.
If you’re using a squeeze bottle, get a good amount in the palm of your hand, rub your hands together and then rub the shiner into the rubber. With spray bottles you can apply the shiner straight to the latex and then use massaging motions to rub it across the latex.
If you’re wearing your latex out, take a bottle of shiner with you so you can top up throughout the evening if it goes dull. Remember: the shiner won’t absorb into the latex or your skin but it will soak into other fabrics and transfer onto other people. So, be careful who you touch and where you sit to avoid leaving stains on the furniture.
Need more help?
You can Contact Customer Care, who will be able to help you find the right latex clothing - try to have a tape measure to hand so you can give the advisor your measurements. You can send an email any time, and telephone or live chat to an experienced advisor from 8am-10pm Monday-Friday and 8am-4pm Saturday.
The other great place to look for people's advice on latex and rubber is on the Lovehoney Forum, where our community is on hand 24/7 to give their opinions and tips.